Stay at home restrictions in Wales could be eased in three weeks

Stay-at-home restrictions in Wales could be eased in three weeks, First Minister Mark Drakeford has said.

Mr Drakeford told BBC Radio Wales: “I hope that this will be the last three weeks of the strict, straight, stay-at-home requirement.

“So if in three weeks time the numbers are still falling, the positivity rate is falling, the R number is below one, hospital pressures continue to reduce, then I hope we’ll be able to move beyond stay at home.

“I think it’s just at the moment too uncertain for me to be able to say whether that will be to a stay local arrangement of the sort we had last year, or whether we will be able to go beyond that.

“Of course our aim is to restore freedoms to people as fast as we’re able to do so but always provided it is safe to do so.

“As well as the good things – the vaccination programme, the falling numbers – we’ve also got difficulties as well, we’ve got new variants cropping up, we don’t know the impact that they will have on the circulation of the virus.

“The minute we begin to lift the lockdown, we know the virus will start to circulate again. It’s whether we can do that in a way that keeps it under control and creates more capacity for freedoms to be restored, freedoms for families to meet, freedom to begin the first steps of reopening the tourism sector.

“It’ll all have to be done step-by-step, carefully, and in a way that allows us always to review the evidence from any steps we take to make sure we’re not trying to do too many things too quickly.”

Wales’ First Minister Mark Drakeford (Image: Daily Post Wales)

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