Wait almost over for South West tourism and hospitality industry as decision looms on re-opening date

The tourism and hospitality industries are key sectors of the West Country's economy, with Visit England saying tourism here contributes nearly £10bn to the economy.

With that in mind it is understandable why so many of the South West's politicians want to see hotels and tourist attractions reopen.

The Government's plan is to allow them to reopen on Saturday 4 July along with pubs, restaurants and hairdressers.

However, Downing Street keeps reminding us that is "conditional" on the rate of infection in England.

The Government's plan is to allow them to reopen on Saturday 4th of July along with pubs, restaurants and hairdressers.

The industries are pushing for a decision soon so that they can prepare and be ready to open, but they are also pushing to have the two metre rule relaxed at the same time.

Boris Johnson will decide on both areas today, 22 June, during a meeting with senior Cabinet Ministers and experts, before a full Cabinet meeting tomorrow, 23 June, and an announcement at lunchtime in the House of Commons.

After the decision is announced restaurants, pubs, hotels, tourist attractions and hairdressers will be given guidance on how they can make their businesses 'Covid Secure' before they're allowed to reopen.

However, Downing Street is warning that any easing on the 4 July will only be possible if the spread of the virus is low and stays low after the hospitality and tourism industries start to reopen.

The reason we are able to move forward this week is because the vast majority of people have taken steps to contain the virus.

Number 10 Spokesperson
The industries are pushing for a decision soon so that they can prepare and be ready to open Credit: Google

The general warning from many of our tourism and hospitality businesses is that if they're not allowed to reopen soon and the two metre rule is not reduced then they may not be able to survive and will have to make staff redundant.

Boris Johnson has to balance economic fears like that alongside worries that people moving around more and visiting more places could allow the spread of the virus to increase.