A DECISION will soon be made on whether the easing of coronavirus restrictions on June 21 will go ahead.

Nightclubs could open and social distancing good be a distant memory if the easing does go ahead.

However, with a rise of coronavirus cases, will the government lift the remaining restrictions.

A total of 927,524 doses of the coronavirus vaccine given out across Dorset, according to the latest NHS data.

In Saturday's daily update, 50 people tested positive for the virus across Dorset, with a gradual increase of cases recorded in the past couple of weeks.

The seven-day rolling infection rate up to June 7 for the BCP Council area was 29.1 per 100,000 people, while in the Dorset Council area it was 16.1 per 100,000.

Despite this increase, perhaps in part down to the easing of restrictions which has already taken place, no deaths have been recorded in Dorset hospitals since May 3.

Furthermore, between May 31 and June 6, just one person was admitted to hospital with the virus in the county.

And as of June 8, just one person was occupying a hospital bed with Covid-19 in Dorset.


Bournemouth Echo:

Health secretary Matt Hancock said the government was “absolutely open” to delaying the easing of restrictions.

He told the Andrew Marr show: “We are absolutely open to doing that if that’s what needs to happen.

“We said in the road map that June 21 is the date by which we would not take Step 4 before that date and that we would look at the data.

“That is exactly what we are doing, so the road map was set up in order to be able to take these sort of changes into account.”

Rishi Sunak was also open to accepting a “short delay” to step 4 of the roadmap.

A Whitehall source pointed towards the Treasury having gone “long” on emergency coronavirus support packages in the Budget to cover the possibility of a delay to the plans.

Meanwhile, speaking on Saturday at the G7 summit in Cornwall, Boris Johnson said the spread of the Delta variant of the coronavirus, which was first detected in India, is a matter of “serious, serious concern” as he prepares to put lockdown lifting on hold.

According to national reports, the Prime Minister is expected to announce a delay of up to four weeks in the final easing of restrictions in England which had been due to take place on June 21 under the Government’s road map.

He insisted that no decisions had been taken ahead of a formal announcement on Monday.

However he made clear that there had been a deterioration in the situation, with a surge in cases of the Delta variant since the start of the month.

As reported, the cumulative total of Delta cases in Dorset sequenced by Public Health England up to June 8 stood at 86.

Read more: More than 80 Delta variant Covid cases identified in Dorset


Bournemouth Echo:

On Thursday, a bar in Bournemouth closed until the middle of this week after a “number of positive cases of Covid-19”.

Bar So, in Exeter Road closed and anyone who visited between May 29 and June 2 was asked to get a test.

A statement from the bar said: "We have been informed of a number of positive cases of COVID-19 associated with Bar So.

"We have been working with Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council and Public Health England South West to take any necessary action.”


Bournemouth Echo:

Despite the rise in cases, director of Public Health Dorset, Sam Crowe, said the south west region had lower numbers than many other areas.

He also reminded people to remember the importance of meeting people outside.

He said: “As restrictions have been eased, we expected that we would start to see a rise in cases as a result of increased contact.

“Over the last couple of weeks we have begun to see that in our local case rates across both council areas. Cases here and in the wider South West region are lower than many other areas in England but we do know that things can change quickly.

“We know that there is usually a delay between cases increasing and seeing the impact on hospitalisations.

“We know that vaccines help protect us from Covid-19 and over 900,000 doses have been given in Dorset, so we would expect this to have an impact on the number of people becoming seriously ill and requiring hospital treatment.

“Seeing cases increase is a reminder that despite the easing of restrictions, we are still living with Covid-19.

“There are a number of ways everyone can play their part in protecting themselves and their loved ones.

“Continue to follow the hands, face, space rules and remember the importance of fresh air by either meeting others outside or opening doors and windows.

“Take up the offer of the vaccine when it’s your turn and make sure you get both doses. And finally take part in regular rapid testing, this is free, quick and easy and will help make sure you’re not unknowingly spreading the virus to others.”