As the prime minister prepares plans to ease lockdown restrictions, pubs, bars and restaurants could see a return to normality by July.
Boris Johnson will scrutinise data this week on coronavirus case numbers, hospital admissions, deaths and the impact of the vaccine rollout ahead of the announcement on the roadmap out of lockdown next week.
According to the Daily Mail, the hospitality industry can expect to be “broadly normal” by July, with curbs relaxed in four-weekly intervals from Easter.
The paper said ministers are weighing up allowing holiday lets to open in time for the Easter weekend and that pubs could open in May, but with only up to two households permitted to mix indoors.
The rule of six would then come into force for mixing inside by June, it added.
The hospitality and domestic holiday industries could be allowed to return to relative normality in July, the paper added.
Johnson has said he will aim to give target dates for restrictions being eased when he sets out his plan next Monday, but “won’t hesitate” to delay plans if infection rates make it necessary.
The Daily Telegraph reported COVID cases would need to drop below 1,000 per day before lockdown could be softened, a figure suggested by former health secretary Jeremy Hunt earlier this month when he urged a cautious approach to lifting restrictions.
On Tuesday there were 10,625 lab-confirmed cases reported, while Downing Street said no decision had been made yet on easing the lockdown.
Watch: What you can and can't do during England's third national lockdown