LOCKDOWN restrictions will be eased in Ireland from midnight tonight in the first significant change to public health measures in over four months.
Initially, the start of April had been earmarked as the day when Level 5 lockdown would be lifted, but a combination of Covid-19 case numbers being too high and vaccine supply issues forced the Government into making only a few minor changes.
While the skeleton of a full lockdown is set to remain in place for at least another month or so, the public will be able to enjoy some well earned freedoms from tomorrow.
As of midnight tonight, the following changes will be made to restrictions:
- The 5km travel limit will be scrapped, and people will now be allowed to travel anywhere within their county or within 20km of their homes if crossing beyond county boundaries.
- People who have received their final Covid-19 vaccination over two weeks ago will be allowed to meet one other fully vaccinated person without the need to wear a mask or stay two metres apart.
- Residential construction work will be allowed to restart along with projects involving the development of childcare and other early learning facilities.
- Individuals will also be allowed to meet with others from one different household in an outdoor setting, though meeting in private gardens is still prohibited.
While this is all the changes that will be made overnight, people won't be waiting long before more restrictions are eased.
From April 19, elite athletes and those training for GAA will be able to resume, while on April 26 outdoor sports facilities like golf and tennis will reopen along with outdoor attractions like zoos and other heritage sites.
The maximum number of people attending funerals will rise to 25 on this date too.
All construction work in Ireland could resume on May 14 if case numbers stay low enough, alongside a phased reopening of non-essential retail beginning with outdoor retail.
Personal services, museums, libraries, galleries and religious services could also reopen or resume on a staggered based from the beginning of next month.