Hotels, cinemas and museums set to reopen in Wales amid relaxation of lockdown

24 July 2020, 12:28

The Welsh First Minister warned “Coronavirus has not gone away. But if we all work together, we can keep Wales safe.”
The Welsh First Minister warned “Coronavirus has not gone away. But if we all work together, we can keep Wales safe.”. Picture: PA
Peter Gillibrand

By Peter Gillibrand

Coronavirus restrictions are set to be relaxed even further in Wales over the next few days.

The First Minister, Mark Drakeford, announced that from tomorrow, tourist accommodation with shared facilities, like campsites and hotels can all re-open, as will underground attractions like Dan yr Ogof Caves in the Brecon Beacons.

While on Monday, cinemas, museums and beauty salons can all re-open from Monday, but, again, not all of those will re-open.

We know already that Wales’ National Museums won’t be re-opening until at least the 4th of August – but some won’t re-open until the 1st of September.

New rules also come in on Monday relating to facemasks. It’ll be compulsory to wear a face-covering on public transport.

But there’s nothing been said by the Welsh Government on wearing a face-covering in shops as with England and Scotland.

Alongside beauty salons, nail parlours, tattoo shops, cinemas, amusement arcades, museums and galleries, the relaxation of the rules will also be changed to get the housing market in Wales to fully re-open.

Mr Drakeford has also given the green light for the viewing of occupied homes for rent or sale to restart from Monday.

While it’s a big change on paper – it’s not necessarily a big change to the people in Wales. The restrictions enable the businesses to reopen but it doesn’t require them to.

But First Minister Mark Drakeford thinks this will be of benefit to the Welsh economy.

“Thanks to the efforts we have all made to reduce the spread of the virus, we are taking further steps to re-open more of Wales.”

“More of our retail, leisure, hospitality and tourism sectors, which play such an important part in our economy, will start to welcome back customers and guests from tomorrow,” he said.

And while more people venture out across Wales – the First Minister is also urging people to use the contact tracing system in place – and a familiar sight to anybody who’s been to a pub here.

“As more places start to reopen, we must get used to some changes to help protect ourselves and the people working in these businesses. This may mean having to book ahead or giving our details to the places we are visiting, to help our Test Trace Protect service, in the event there’s an outbreak of coronavirus.

“It’s the responsibility of all of us to follow these new rules so we can keep ourselves and our loved ones safe,” he said.

Mr Drakeford warned, “coronavirus has not gone away. But if we all work together, we can keep Wales safe.”

The next review of the Coronavirus regulations will legally have to be done by close of play on the 30th of July – and it’s looking likely they’ll be discussing things like opening the hospitality sector indoors so people may soon be able to sit inside their favourite pub or restaurant soon.

Editing by EJ Ward