Guernsey takeaways and non-essential deliveries to restart

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image captionGuernsey entered lockdown for the first time since June on 23 January after a coronavirus outbreak was identified

Takeaways and non-essential deliveries will be allowed in Guernsey from Monday as the island enters stage one of its exit from lockdown.

Bubbles of two households and outdoor gatherings of up to five people will also be permitted.

Anyone meeting outdoors not in a bubble must maintain social distancing, the States of Guernsey said.

Some businesses can return to work, with up to 10 staff allowed on outdoor sites and five in indoor spaces.

Alderney will move into stage one earlier - from Thursday - and Sark has already relaxed restrictions.

Non-essential businesses in the islands were closed on 23 January when the island went into lockdown after new cases of Covid-19 were identified.

Under stage one, non public-facing businesses will be allowed to operate, including non-essential shops where goods can be sold online and delivered, estate agents, construction, garages and catering services.

Some businesses have already reopened if they can be staffed by one person, including non-essential delivery services.

Two metre (6ft) social distancing at workplaces will be mandatory and hand washing facilities must be provided, according to the States' three-stage exit from lockdown framework.

Businesses planning to reopen must inform the States, maintain records and show what steps they have taken to mitigate risk of coronavirus transmission.

'Positive step forward'

The move comes as the bailiwick's active cases fall to 123, with 496 coronavirus infections identified since the outbreak began.

Chairman of the Civil Contingencies Authority Peter Ferbrache said islanders have done a "tremendous job" getting the more transmissible variant of the virus under control.

He said: "But as we continue to see cases, including those where the source is not clear, we need to tread very carefully."

Deputy Ferbrache acknowledged stage one was a "very limited" release of lockdown rules, which was to ensure the island does not "see another sudden rise in cases".

"But it's a positive step forward and does allow us to see some of our loved ones again, and allow some parts of the economy to get back to work in a careful, controlled way."

Stage two - for which no date has yet been set - will permit gatherings of up to 30 people, restaurants, hotels and pubs operating with table service only and the reopening of non-essential shops.

However, nightclubs will remain closed and public singing, or playing of woodwind and brass instruments will still be banned.

The criteria for entering the second stage includes there being no new clusters of infections or individual cases that cannot be controlled by testing, contact tracing and self-isolation, having adequate health care capacity and the continued roll-out of the vaccine.

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