Prime Minister Boris Johnson is set to announce the return of big wedding celebrations after June 21, The Telegraph has reported.
In spite of concerns over the fast-spreading Indian variant of coronavirus, the PM remains sure that large-scale wedding celebrations will be able to return following the next stage of lockdown easing.
When will big weddings be allowed again?
According to reports in The Telegraph, government sources said on Friday (May 21) that they were confident big weddings would return after June 21, the next stage of lockdown easing, on the condition that emerging data on the Indian variant didn’t worsen.
Their confidence has been boosted by positive results from the government’s pilot of large events - with just 15 people testing positive for coronavirus among 58,000 attendees.
On May 21, Boris Johnson told reporters in Plymouth that the government would “let people know as much as we possibly can by the end of the month about weddings, for instance.”
When will an announcement be made?
The Prime Minister has said the public will be updated on the next stage of lockdown easing at the end of the month - so it’s likely an announcement will be made in the coming week.
This update is likely to include results of the government’s review into relaxing social distancing rules, including face mask regulations and the “one metre plus” rule.
Will there be any restrictions on weddings after June 21?
The government has previously suggested some, if not all, restrictions on everyday life - including social distancing - may be lifted from June 21.
This means that weddings may be able to go ahead without any restrictions on the number of guests attending or social distancing measures in place.
Further detail on any rules that will remain will be given by the government in due course.
What are the current restrictions on weddings?
In England, up to 30 people are currently allowed to attend a wedding ceremony or reception, with anyone working excluded from the count.
Food and drink can be provided, but it must all be ordered, served and consumed with guests sitting down - as is the case in hospitality venues.
Guests are advised to be “cautious” about mixing with other households and must wear a face covering unless exempt.
Currently, wedding discos are off - with guidelines saying that “dancing is advised against due to the increased risk of transmission, except the couple's first dance."
In Scotland, up to 50 people may attend weddings and receptions, though social distancing must be maintained.
It’s hoped that from June 7, up to 100 people may be allowed at celebrations following the next stage of lockdown easing.
Similarly, physical distancing must be maintained at weddings and receptions in Wales, where up to 30 people are permitted to attend indoors or up to 50 outdoors - with children under 11 excluded from the total.
They must take place in regulated venues, not private homes or gardens.
In Northern Ireland, there is currently no limit on the number of people allowed to attend a wedding, but venues must decide how many people they can accommodate safely. Separate households should maintain physical distancing.