Residents are being urged to act with extreme caution – and continue to practice social distancing at all times – as the Government eases coronavirus lockdown restrictions.

From today, people in England are allowed to gather in groups of up to 6 from other households, either in public or in private outdoor spaces, such as gardens, as long as they follow social distancing measures and keep 2 metres apart. They can play sports with others, but again only if it is possible to keep a 2 metre space between them.

Reception, Year 1, Year 6 and nursery age children are allowed to go back to school, and people can also visit outdoor retail spaces where social distancing can be observed, such as outdoor markets and car showrooms.

In addition, the Government announced yesterday that extremely vulnerable people who are currently shielding can now leave their home if they wish, as long as they are able to maintain strict social distancing. If they do go outside, this should only be with members of their own household. If they live alone, they can spend time outdoors with 1 person from another household - though ideally this should be the same person each time. 

People still need to: 

  • stay at home as much as possible
  • work from home if you can
  • limit contact with other people
  • keep your distance if you go out (two metres apart where possible)
  • wash your hands regularly
  • do not leave home if you or anyone in your household has symptoms

John Denley, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Director of Public Health, said: "As the Government gradually eases lockdown restrictions, this is a critical time in the fight against coronavirus. Nothing has changed with Covid-19 – it’s still infectious and it’s still dangerous – so we need people to exercise extreme caution at all times, particularly if they are planning to take part in any of the activities which are now permitted.

"Limiting our day to day contact with other people is the only way to stop the spread of coronavirus, and to help save lives, and so we all must need to keep on following the social distancing guidance – that means keeping 2  metres away from anyone who isn't a member of your own household.

"Take advantage of the new measures which have been announced if you wish, but please make sure you refrain from organising or taking part in events and activities where social distancing will either be difficult or nigh on impossible. 

“We've seen on the news over the weekend people cramming together at beauty spots, both locally and in other parts of the country, with very little social distancing taking place. From a public health point of view, this is very worrying. A barbecue with friends and family might seem like a fantastic idea, but you need to think about whether it will really be possible to stay 2 metres away from people who are not in your household.

"The Government has said that it will not hesitate to reintroduce lockdown measures in places where the transmission rate increases again, and we all have a responsibility to balance the risk between more social interaction and the risk of a resurgence of the virus."

The latest information and guidance around coronavirus is available at GOV.UK and on the council’s own coronavirus pages at Coronavirus advice and information. There’s lots of advice on how people can protect themselves and their families from coronavirus from the NHS.  

The council’s Stay Safe, Be Kind campaign offers clear and simple advice about how people can help themselves, and how they can support others who may be particularly vulnerable at this time. For more information, please visit Stay Safe, Be Kind