The Premier League will welcome fans back into stadiums from December

Henrietta Strickland
November 24, 2020

Theatres in select parts of England will be able to reopen from 2 December in line with new tier guidance set out by the United Kingdom government.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson revealed the government's latest set of measures created to limit the spread of Covid-19 on Monday, offering a look at what the plan will be for football supporters going forward.

Members of Parliament are set to cast a vote on plans before they are confirmed and the government will announce on Thursday which areas will go into which tier.

Coronavirus vaccines could immunise the "vast majority" of the UK's most vulnerable by Easter, meaning there may be no need for restrictions, Boris Johnson has said.

But Johnson said a "time-limited" exception for families to gather for Christmas would be granted, though he warned that "Christmas can not be normal and there's a long road to spring".

In all areas of England non-essential shops, gyms, hairdressers, beauty parlours, and the wider leisure sector will be able to reopen, and collective worship, weddings and outdoor sports can resume. The government will no longer instruct people to stay at home.

Labour leader Sir Kier Starmer questioned the system, saying it closely resembled the old three-tier system that "did not work" and resulted in the current lockdown situation. The "rule of six" - allowing people to mix with up to five others outdoors - will return in outdoor spaces.

- In Tier 3, pubs and restaurants will only be able to offer takeaway and delivery services, while indoor entertainment, hotels and other accommodation will close.

Despite the support for vaccination as a solution to the crisis, Johnson said that the government will not force people to have vaccinations against COVID-19.

A decision on the possible relaxation of restrictions over Christmas is expected later this week. Coronavirus measures in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland continue to be decided by their own devolved governments, but all three have committed to finding a joint approach to Christmas with England.

Johnson told MPs: "We all want some kind of Christmas, we certainly feel we deserve it". "What we don't want is to throw caution to the wind and allow the virus to flare up again", Johnson added. "We have to be convinced that these government interventions - which will have such a huge impact on people's lives, their health and their businesses - are going to save more lives than they cost", he said.

Largely described as a "tougher" version of the tier system seen earlier this autumn, any venue placed in "tier three" (the very high alert band) will not be able to stage shows in front of live audiences (though live-streamed productions will be permitted, as has been the case throughout November).

Johnson has announced plans for up to 4,000 fans to be allowed to attend matches once a second lockdown ends on December 2, a move that has been warmly welcomed by the Premier League, EFL and the FA.

"But the next few weeks and months will for many feel like purgatory - stuck in limbo between a national lockdown and a new normal".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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