Claire welcomes East Surrey opening for Summer

Claire Coutinho, MP for East Surrey, today welcomed the relaxation of lockdown measures and has appealed to the public to support an important part of the economy.  

There are 590 hospitality and leisure businesses in East Surrey. The sector has been in lockdown since strict social distancing was implemented in March with many employees being furloughed.

Last month the Prime Minister set out the Governments plan for the further relaxing of lockdown measures in England. These are to ensure people can see more of their friends and family, help businesses get back on their feet and get people back to their jobs.

As part of this careful easing, from 6.00am today pubs and restaurants will be able to reopen, providing they adhere to Covid Secure guidelines, and some leisure facilities and tourist attractions may also reopen if they are able to do so safely.

Claire Coutinho, MP for East Surrey, welcomed the measures: “Thanks to the sacrifice of the British people we have managed to contain the spread of coronavirus. This has taken a significant toll on the 590 tourism and hospitality businesses based in East Surrey. It is great that they are now able to re-open for the remaining summer months.

“Tourism and hospitality are one of the UK’s economic crown jewels. The sector generates £143bn for the Exchequer each year, is Britain’s 4th largest industry, sixth largest export-earner and employs nearly 15% of the country’s workforce. It is vital we all do what we can to support a crucial part of the UK economy over the next couple of months. I urge residents and visitors alike to come out and safely support some fantastic local businesses across East Surrey.”

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said: “This is a significant moment for the UK’s fantastic tourism and hospitality businesses and the bounce back can now begin on 4th July. Across the country people have been looking forward to taking a day trip, weekend break or staycation following their efforts in lockdown over the past three months. Britain deserves a break and I hope people get out, support tourism businesses and enjoy a break safely.”

The Government will be publishing further detailed guidance to help tourist attractions and accommodation venues to re-open safely, such as by social distancing and cleaning protocols.

A new industry standard will also be introduced by Visit England, so that the public can easily see if the venue is carrying out the new rules.

While the infection rate continues to fall, the Prime Minister has been clear that the public must continue to follow social distancing guidelines to keep coronavirus under control. The Government will keep all measures under constant review.