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Revellers hit nightclubs as Wales opens doors for the first time in 18 months

On Saturday morning the country moved into ‘level zero’ of the Welsh Government’s Coronavirus Control Plan, meaning the lifting of a raft of restrictions, including club closures

The rule change came into force at the weekend

Huge crowds poured into Welsh cities at the weekend as the country lifted restrictions on nightclubs for the first time in nearly 18 months.

Revellers were seen lining the streets to get inside the newly re-opened clubs with party goers enjoying their first taste of clubbing freedom.

On Saturday morning the country moved into ‘level zero’ of the Welsh Government’s Coronavirus Control Plan.

It meant the lifting of restrictions on meeting others and all businesses, including nightclubs, were given the green light to welcome back customers once again.

To mark the change in the rules, hundreds of people flocked to the streets in Swansea for the opening of nightclubs.



Revellers packed out cities including Swansea and Cardiff
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Image:

Dimitris Legakis/Athena Pictures)




Long queues formed as people eagerly waited for the doors to open up again for the first time since March last year.

Birthday parties and hen do celebrations were all spotted in scenes that had all but vanished since before the pandemic in Wales.

Others were seen tucking into a kebab or sat on the wet floor as the night of revelry came to an end for some.



Clubs have been shut since March last year
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Image:

Dimitris Legakis/Athena Pictures)






The relaxation brings Wales in line with England
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Image:

Dimitris Legakis/Athena Pictures)




Among the other rule changes the two-metre social distancing rule is now no longer a blanket rule and is instead up to individual establishments to determine.

Rules around self-isolation also changed and double-vaccinated people are no longer legally required to self-isolate if they come into contact with someone with Covid – although they will be advised to take PCR tests on day two and day eight.

Announcing the relaxation of the rules at a press conference First Minister Mark Drakeford called the move “big step closer to life”.

But he went on to warn that it did not mean an “end of restrictions and a free for all”.



The First Minister urged people not to treat it as a ‘free for all’
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Image:

Dimitris Legakis/Athena Pictures)






Some restrictions will remain in place
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Image:

Dimitris Legakis/Athena Pictures)




Face masks will continue to be required on public transport, in health and social care settings, and in shops.

Venues will be required by law to undertake coronavirus risk assessments, intended to encourage businesses to keep in place measures such as ventilation or social distancing where necessary to keep staff and customers safe.

The First Minister added that 82 per cent of adults in the country have had both doses of the vaccine, while the incidence rate of Covid-19 is now 130 cases per 100,000 people.

“Our high vaccination rates, some of the best in the whole of the world, have helped to weaken the link between coronavirus infection, serious illness and hospitalisation,” he said.



It comes as figures show a high number of people taking the vaccine
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Image:

Dimitris Legakis/Athena Pictures)






Venues must undertake risk assessments
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Image:

Dimitris Legakis/Athena Pictures)




“Having reached this important milestone, we now need to carefully monitor the impact of lifting so many restrictions and we therefore do not expect to make any further changes at the next review.”

He added: “Alert level 0 does not mean the end of coronavirus and it very certainly does not mean a free-for-all here in Wales.

“We still have people who are clinically vulnerable in our communities and most people in Wales want to go on acting carefully to protect their health and the health of others.”










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