English outdoor attractions, including zoos and safari parks, will be allowed to reopen from Monday (15 June) – providing they can ensure social distancing.
Prime minister Boris Johnson is expected to confirm the measures at Wednesday’s daily coronavirus briefing (10 June), the reports BBC, as the government seeks to further ease the UK’s coronavirus lockdown.
Non-essential retail premises, including travel agencies, in England will also be allowed to reopen on Monday, if they can meet new Covid-secure guidelines.
Public health decisions, such as how and went to ease certain lockdown measures, are a devolved responsibility, so it is for the devolved administrations in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland to make a separate judgement on any outdoor attractions.
A Number 10 spokesperson said the government hoped reopening safari parks and zoos would give families more options to spend time outdoors, while supporting the outdoor attraction sector.
Indoor exhibits at zoos will remain shut, and both zoos and safari parks will be require to ensure visitors observe social distancing.
The move has been welcomed by Biaza, the British and Irish Association for Zoos and Aquariums, and comes after the government set up a £14 million Zoo Support Fund.
Biaza chair Dr Christoph Schwitzer said: “Over the last few months, working with our members and other industry leaders, we have contacted hundreds of officials and politicians, [and] pushed every button we can so government realises the urgency of the situation across our diverse membership.
“Biaza is not under any illusions of the challenges we still face. Many of our members, including aquariums and tropical houses, are not able to open and members in other nations remain under lockdown.
"We will continue to make our case across the nations as well as pushing for urgent financial aid to be made available from governments. We are not out of the woods yet.”