Boris Johnson has said there is a “good chance” the one-metre plus social distancing rule can be scrapped from 21 June.
During a campaign visit in Hartlepool, the prime minister told reporters: “I think we’ve got a good chance, a good chance, of being able to dispense with one-metre plus.”
Under the government’s roadmap for easing COVID-19 restrictions, 21 June is the date on which all legal limits on social contact are set to be removed.
But there have been suggestions that some separate measures – like social distancing and mask wearing – could continue beyond that point.
The government’s roadmap for relaxing coronavirus rules acknowledges that social distancing is “difficult and damaging for businesses and, as a result, it is important to return to as near to normal as quickly as possible”.
It adds: “Ahead of Step 4 [21 June], as more is understood about the impact of vaccines on transmission and a far greater proportion of the population has been vaccinated, the government will complete a review of social distancing measures and other long-term measures that have been put in place to limit transmission.
“The results of the review will help inform decisions on the timing and circumstances under which rules on 1m+, face masks and other measures may be lifted.”
The prime minister’s roadmap for lifting lockdown restrictions applies to England, with the other UK nations drawing up their own guidelines.