April 12 reopening – which small businesses can reopen in England?

Small business roadmap for reopening with key dates on April 12, May 17 and June 21

Shops, pubs and restaurants and other small businesses have been reallowed to reopen, as of April 12.

However, the rules on social contact still apply: indoor settings must only be visited alone or with household groups; outdoor settings are limited to either six people or two households.

This includes non-essential retail; personal care premises such as hairdressers, beauty and nail salons; and indoor leisure facilities such as gyms and spas (but not including saunas and steam rooms, which are due to open on May 17).

>See also: Small business confidence grows as shops reopen in England and Wales

The majority of outdoor settings and attractions have also reopened, including outdoor hospitality, zoos, theme parks, drive-in cinemas and drive-in performances events.

Hospitality venues can open for outdoor service, with no requirement for a substantial meal to be served alongside alcohol, and the 10pm curfew has been scrapped. The requirement to eat and drink while seated will remain.

>See also: Covid-19 roadmap – when can I reopen my business in Scotland?

April 12 reopening for small businesses

  • Clothing shops
  • Homeware shops
  • Toy shops
  • Vehicle showrooms (other than for rental)
  • Betting shops
  • Tailors
  • Tobacco and vape shops
  • Electronic goods shops
  • Mobile phone shops
  • Auction houses (except for auctions of livestock or agricultural equipment)
  • Market stalls selling non-essential goods

Other small businesses that have reopened on April 12 include:

  • Pubs (outdoor service only)
  • Restaurants (outdoor service only)
  • Hairdressers
  • Gyms (indoor exercising, no classes)
  • Beauty salons
  • Spas
  • Theme parks
  • Drive-in cinemas
  • Drive-in performances
  • Zoos

>See also: Covid-19 roadmap – when can I reopen my small business in Wales?

May 17 reopening – which small businesses can reopen?

  • Pubs (indoor serving)
  • Restaurants (indoor serving)
  • Steam rooms
  • Saunas
  • Cinemas
  • Bingo halls
  • Bowling alleys
  • Big events (with capacity)
  • Sports stadiums (with capacity)
  • Businesses that rely on an indoor setting will be allowed to open their doors to customers again from May 17

June 21 reopening – which small businesses can reopen?

  • Casinos
  • Nightclubs
  • Larger events

Further reading

How to reopen your gym, pool or leisure facility post lockdown







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Tim Adler

Tim Adler is group editor of Small Business, Growth Business and Information Age. He is a former commissioning editor at the Daily Telegraph, who has written for the Financial Times, The Times and the...