- Title: 'Open up Britain, Boris' - Brits eager to end lockdown despite COVID concerns
- Date: 5th July 2021
- Summary: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM (JULY 5, 2021) (REUTERS) CHARING CROSS STATION BRITISH FLAG WOMAN POSTING MAIL INTO POSTBOX PEOPLE ON CENTRAL LONDON STREET (SOUNDBITE) (English) 69-YEAR-OLD RETIREE, SUE BRACKEN, SAYING: "It's down to the individuals, really. I will still wear my mask in confined spaces, but I think we've got to live with this now. We have to live with this virus and we have to get on with it. People are chomping at the bit now to get out and about and to be able to socialise a little bit more. So I think (I'm) 50-50, if there's such a thing." EURO 2020 FAN PARK OUTSIDE THE NATIONAL GALLERY ON TRAFALGAR SQUARE STAFF PREPARING FANZONE (SOUNDBITE) (English) 50-YEAR-OLD SECRETARY, MANDY SUITER, SAYING: "I think it's too late, but I'm very, very much looking forward to it, I can assure you. I think it's just dragged on too long. Yes, there's still cases, but no one's... not very many people seem to be suffering with it so much. I think the economy and everyone's mental health is suffering a lot more. So, open up Britain, Boris." PEOPLE WALKING ON STREET (SOUNDBITE) (English) 69-YEAR-OLD RETIREE, JOHN STEED, SAYING: "Although the numbers in hospital don't seem to be getting very much higher, and as (Health Minister) Sajid Javid says, you know, we've got to reopen sometime and we've just got to be cautious. But exactly how we're going to be cautious is perhaps to be thought out, I think." VARIOUS OF PEOPLE WALKING ON STREET (SOUNDBITE) (English) 77-YEAR-OLD RETIREE, IAN BALL, SAYING: "I think it's probably high time they were relaxed, but then again, I've got concerns about people who are going to be exposed to the vulnerable. But yeah, we've got to get on with the economy, haven't we?" PEOPLE WALKING ON STREET POLICE VEHICLE VIEW TOWARDS PARLIAMENT FROM THE WEST END
- Embargoed: 19th July 2021 12:08
- Keywords: Boris Johnson COVID-19 coronavirus lockdown pandemic prime minister restrictions
- Location: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM
- City: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM
- Country: United Kingdom
- Topics: Europe,Health/Medicine
- Reuters ID: LVA001EKKDWZR
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will set out plans on Monday (July 5) for the final step in easing England's COVID-19 lockdown, including guidance on social distancing, face coverings and working from home.
After imposing the most onerous restrictions in Britain's peacetime history to battle the novel coronavirus, Johnson is preparing to lift most restrictions in England on July 19, with a final decision due on July 12.
Data suggests that cases will continue to rise as restrictions are eased, the government said, but the link to hospital admissions and deaths has been weakened by a rapid vaccination program.
Johnson is expected to say that people will learn to live with COVID as they do already with flu, meaning that hospitalisations, serious illness and deaths will continue but at a much lower level than before widespread vaccination.
Several Londoners who spoke to Reuters said they believed it was now time to end the lockdown despite any continuing concerns about the virus.
Britain has suffered the seventh highest global death toll from COVID-19, and Johnson has been criticised for his decisions over the timing of each of England's three lockdowns.
But the take-up of vaccines in Britain has been strong, with 86% of adults receiving a first dose and 64% receiving two doses as of Sunday (July 4), according to government data.
Cases of COVID-19 have also risen sharply in Britain in recent weeks, driven by the now-dominant Delta variant, and the final step of lockdown easing was delayed by four weeks to enable more people to be vaccinated.
However, Public Health England figures indicate that the vaccines are highly effective in preventing the Delta variant leading to severe illness or hospital admission.
(Production: Natalie Thomas, Ben Dangerfield)
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