U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced that COVID-19 entry requirements for clubs will be scrapped beginning next week on January 26th.
Currently, attendees must show proof of either a COVID-19 vaccination or a negative lateral flow test in order to gain entry. These requirements were introduced as part of the U.K. government’s “Plan B” measures in response to rising cases of the highly contagious Omicron variant. They applied to all unseated indoor venues with a capacity of at least 500 people and unseated outdoor venues that hold more than 4,000 people.
The easing of restrictions comes as a breath of fresh air to venue owners struggling to make ends meet throughout the pandemic. Last year, the Night Time Industries Association (NTIA), a U.K. trade group representing venues across the country, reported that about 86,000 jobs in the nightlife industry were lost due to the pandemic.
Johnson also announced that other Plan B COVID-19 restrictions will also come to an end. These include suggestions to work at home whenever possible and mandatory mask-wearing on public transportation and in shops. Mandatory self-isolation for those with COVID-19 will also end on March 24th.
Clubs in Scotland, which have been closed since December 27th due to COVID-19 cases, are also set to re-open on January 24th.