Residents and visitors in Cornwall are being urged to make sure they know and follow the new Government rules which come into effect on Monday (May 17).
As more of the lockdown restrictions are lifted and life starts to look more familiar again, there is a real risk that Covid-19 could sneak back into our communities.
Cornwall Council’s Public Health team is urging everyone to follow the rules, get tested twice a week with free Lateral Flow Device (LFD) kits and have the vaccine when invited.
They should also self-isolate immediately and book a confirmatory PCR test if they experience Covid symptoms.
In brief, the rule changes from Monday (May 17) are:
- You can now meet indoors as two households or as part of a group of six. This includes pubs and restaurants.
- Gatherings of up to 30 people are allowed outdoors.
- Indoor entertainment and attractions can open.
- Overnight stays are now permitted for two households or groups of six.
- Organised indoor sport for adults can take place.
- Care home residents can have up to five named visitors and more visits out of their care home.
- Up to 30 people can attend weddings, receptions, wakes, bar mitzvahs and christenings.
- The number of mourners at funerals is based on venue capacity.
- All outdoor entertainment can take place, including performances.
- All accommodation can reopen, including hotels, hostels and B&Bs.
- Some large events will be allowed.
- Some international travel is now permitted, but not to ‘red list’ countries.
The new rules are part of the third step in the Government’s roadmap for reopening the country after lockdown.
Rachel Wigglesworth, Director of Public Health for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, said: “We’ve shown Covid the door – don’t let it back in. That’s my main message.
“To keep the virus at bay and avoid another lockdown, everyone needs to make sure they know what the new rules are and not to break them.
“With the vaccine rollout going well and Covid cases remaining low, people might be tempted to think we’ve come through this pandemic and ignore the rules and guidance. But this would be a big mistake and could jeopardise all the hard work and sacrifices we’ve made over the past year.
“Covid and its inevitable new variants are looking for any chinks in our armour so we must keep our defences as strong as possible. This means following the rules, remembering ‘hands, face, space and fresh air’, getting tested regularly, having your vaccine and making sure you self-isolate and have a test if you have any of the key symptoms – a high temperature, change in taste or smell, and a new cough.
“We’re not out of this yet, and we all need to play our part if we want to get back to doing the things we love.”
People are being reminded that although the vaccine programme in Cornwall is on track and working well, having the jab does not give people a green light to ignore the rules.
Similarly, a negative LFD test does not mean people are free to do what they want.
Cornwall Council will be running a campaign from next week to remind people of the rules so make sure you listen to your local radio stations and look out for our posters.
Visitors to Cornwall are being urged to ‘book, respect, protect and enjoy’ as the Road Map rules change on May 17.
Booking ahead is important, not just for accommodation but also for dining out, attractions and activities.
Tourists are also asked to respect the countryside and local communities by picking up litter and showing tolerance and patience at all times.
As always, they are reminded of the need to follow public health guidance to protect themselves and others.
Finally, with restrictions being lifted and holidays possible for the first time in months, people can enjoy Cornwall’s countryside, culture and attractions.
Malcolm Bell, chief executive of Visit Cornwall, said: “We want everyone who comes here to make fantastic memories and have the best holiday possible.
“By booking ahead, following the public health guidance and showing respect to the countryside and each other, we can all enjoy everything Cornwall has to offer.”
For more information please visit the Visit Cornwall website.