Northern Ireland nightclub reopens as COVID-19 restrictions ease

 Monday, November 1, 2021 


The nightclubs in Northern Ireland reopened on Sunday as some remaining coronavirus restrictions imposed last March were lifted.

The hospitality sector in Northern Ireland is expected to be busy on Halloween night, with legal requirements on social distancing also being scrapped.

The ministers want people to be sensible and exercise personal responsibility.

The customers do not have to wear face coverings when they are eating, drinking or dancing in clubs.

The First Minister Paul Givan said that they are asking to everyone to keep following the public health advice – the responsibility lies with each of us to protect ourselves, our families and the whole community.

Deputy First Minister Michelle O’Neill said that this latest set of relaxations must go hand in hand with the necessary mitigations and personal behaviours that will help to manage risks as people socialise together.

On 7 October, Stormont politicians agreed that social distancing rules in hospitality venues could be removed from 31 October.

The scrapping of 1m (3ft) distancing also meant nightclubs were able to reopen their doors and restrictions banning dancing in those venues have now been removed.

The people are also be able to move around venues and stand to have a drink or eat food. The customers do not have to wear face coverings when they are eating, drinking or dancing.

However, last week the Alliance Party’s Justice Minister Naomi Long said she was concerned the move could lead to a “significant” rise in transmission of the virus.

It is understood advice from health officials supported the decision taken, arguing that dancing is a “strenuous” activity for which face coverings are not recommended.

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