Guidance issued ahead of latest phase of lockdown being eased
Residents are being advised to continue being safe as the North East eases out of lockdown.
As part of the Government’s easing of regulations, hospitality venues and attractions will be welcoming visitors back inside their premises from Monday, May 17.
But those behind the Beat Covid NE campaign are urging people to stay safe whether its travelling on public transport, planning a day out or enjoying hospitality.
The LA7 councils – Northumberland, North Tyneside, Newcastle, Gateshead, South Tyneside, Sunderland, and County Durham – are working together to develop regionalised advice on the Beat Covid NE website.
The aim is to reassure, inform and advise people on how to enjoy their newfound freedoms safely while continuing to help reduce the spread of the virus.
Despite the case numbers being much lower than they have been for many months, Covid-19 is still in circulation in local communities.
Members of the public are still being advised to wash their hands, wear a face covering, stay two metres apart and socialise outside to ensure the region, and its business and hospitality venues can remain open and bring everyone closer to a brighter future.
Liz Morgan, the Lead Director of Public Health for the Covid-19 Vaccination Programme in the North East and Northumberland’s Director of Public Health, said: "Over the last few months we have seen the number of cases of Covid in the North East fall and we need to do everything we can to keep the figures at this lower level.
"Now lockdown has begun to ease further with the reopening of indoor hospitality, entertainment, sporting events, overnight stays and holidays abroad, from Monday, May 17, it is more important than ever that we all remember to follow the Hands, Face, Space and Fresh Air guidance.
"The easing of restrictions also means we can again meet friends and family indoors in groups of six or two households, but this increase in social mixing will lead to an increase in cases if we don't continue to be careful.
"If we want to see restrictions ease further over the coming weeks, we must keep doing the right things now to look after each other.
"We simply cannot afford to take any risks, even if we have been vaccinated.
"Hand hygiene, social distancing, the use of face coverings and meeting outside rather than inside will continue to be essential in preventing the virus from getting out of control."
The LA7 have developed helpful tips on everything from how to travel public transport to enjoying pubs, restaurants and cafes safely outdoors in partnership with regional partners including Go North East and Tyne and Wear Metro.
Stephen King, commercial director at Go North East, said: "Our buses are clean, safe, comfy and greener than ever.
"We make sure all touchpoints are regularly cleansed, and we’ve added hand sanitiser pumps to every bus.
"Each bus also gets a deep clean each night which includes an antiviral mist treatment, so you can travel comfortably knowing we’re taking good care of you.
"The smart technology that's built into our website and the new app also displays how many seats are left on your bus, allowing you to travel with confidence."
For more information and the latest advice visit www.beatcovidne.co.uk