June 21: Which restrictions have eased in England today?

21 June 2021, 09:00

Wedding restrictions are among the rules that eased on Monday
Wedding restrictions are among the rules that eased on Monday. Picture: PA

By Will Taylor

Freedom Day has been delayed in England until next month but some coronavirus restrictions have still eased.

Updates to the limits on guests at weddings and wakes have been made, and changes to care home self-isolation rules have also come into force.

June 21 had been slated as the earliest possible date for legal Covid restrictions to be lifted, but the Government has pushed that date to July 19.

Ministers want to ensure more vaccinations are given out before relaxing measures further.

Boris Johnson said without a delay "there is a real possibility that the virus will outrun the vaccines and that thousands more deaths would ensue which could otherwise have been avoided".

Read more: Covid rules: Cap on wedding guests scrapped in England

Read more: Freedom Day delayed: PM faces fury over not closing borders to Delta variant

"We can give the NHS a few more crucial weeks to get those remaining jabs into the arms of those who need them," he added.

Here is what changed on Monday.

Wedding and civil partnership guests

The cap on 30 guests at weddings and civil partnerships has been lifted, with venues now asked to use the space available to determine how many people can safely attend.

Social distancing measures must remain in place, however, including table service, face coverings and restrictions on dancing and singing.

Read more: 'Hammer blow': PM's Freedom Day delay 'devastating' for country

Wakes and commemorations

Like weddings, the number of people who can attend a wake or events such as stone setting and ash scattering is now limited to the size of the venue.

Similarly, social distancing measures, including restrictions on signing, remain in place.

Events in private homes can only take place subject to the rule of six, or two households at most.

Care home rules

The requirement for care home residents to self-isolate for 14 days after making a visit outside has been dropped for most cases.

They will still need to quarantine on return from "high risk visits", such as staying overnight in a hospital.

Care homes will assess the risk for each visit.

Which restrictions remain?

Other than Monday's minor tweaks, the rules in England remain the same as the previous unlocking on May 17.

This means events and businesses judged by the Government to be higher-risk, like nightclubs, cannot return yet.

Ministers hope to remove all legal limits on social contact and relax restrictions on large events from July 19.