Stormont Executive agrees further easing of Covid rules, but hospitality hits out

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First Minister Paul Givan

Q Radio News/PA

A number of further relaxations of Covid-19 regulations in Northern Ireland have been agreed by Stormont ministers.

Following a four-hour meeting of the Executive on Monday, ministers agreed that in domestic settings the maximum number of people who can meet indoors will increase to 15 people from four households.

In hospitality venues, the requirement for table service will be removed and customers will be permitted to stand while consuming food and drink in outdoor settings.

Customers will also be permitted to take part in activities such as playing pool or using gaming machines.

The restriction which permitted only ambient levels of music in venues will be removed and dancing will be allowed at post-wedding and civil partnership ceremony events.

For indoor venues which host live events, the requirement to purchase tickets in advance will be removed, as will the need for audience members to have allocated seats.

The changes will come into effect from 5pm on Friday and the Executive is set to meet again on Thursday.

However, a group representing the hospitality industry here has hit out, calling for the Executive to go further:

 

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