LOCKDOWN restrictions could stay in place “beyond Easter” with Prime Minister Boris Johnson considering April 2 for a significant easing of the rules, according to reports.
Mr Johnson is purportedly looking at Good Friday, on the first week of April, as a key date for the relaxation of lockdown measures. The potential plans are set to give millions hopes of seeing their families again over Easter, according to the Sun.
A source told the news outlet: “It’s way too soon to start talking about when, but the work is being done quietly on the how.”
But no dates had been set as future announcements depend largely on the progress of the vaccination programme, a Whitehall source told the Mail.
The source added: “The mood was very much about things happening later in the spring rather than early on.
“Beyond Easter is certainly possible. We don’t even know what the benchmark will be.
“It seems unlikely that vaccinating the over-70s will be enough.”
However, Conservative backbenchers have been incrementing pressure for the Government to begin scaling down the lockdown restrictions from the first week of March.
Former Conservative leader Sir Iain Duncan Smith has backed calls for the measures to be eased as soon as those most at risk are inoculated.
He said: “Once the most vulnerable have been vaccinated there is no justification for keeping these restrictions.”
A Cabinet source told the Daily Mail Mr Johnson was currently facing less calls for the imminent end of the national lockdown than during the first lockdown.
The insider said: “No one in the Cabinet is talking about easing restrictions at the moment. The situation is too grave.”
The news comes after reports emerged that school school children, who are due to return to the classroom after the February half term break, may now be forced to continue remote learning until early April.