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Indoor gyms could reopen ‘within days’ as more lockdown restrictions ease

Indoor gyms have been closed for four months (Picture: SWNS)

Boris Johnson is set to give gyms the green light to reopen within a matter of days, according to reports.

Indoor gyms have been shut for four months and were not part of the Government’s latest easing of restrictions, which saw restaurants, pubs, bars and cafes reopen in England on Super Saturday.

But health officials are believed to be satisfied that gyms are now safe to reopen by mid-July, with the Prime Minister expected to make an announcement on the plans today, the Daily Mail reports.

Theatres and indoor pools could also be included in the announcement, while nail bars, nightclubs and tanning salons wait on the Government for a timetable.

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This morning, Chancellor Rishi Sunak said the Government is ‘very keen to make more progress on all the other sectors that continue to be closed’.

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He added: ‘We hope to be able to make progress on all of those very soon.’

Meanwhile, people in Scotland wait for news on whether the country can move into the next phase of its lockdown easing, which could see pubs, restaurants and hairdressers reopening.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is expected to give a statement to the Scottish Parliament outlining when and how measures will be lifted, although she has suggested that not all restrictions will be eased at the same time.

It comes after a sweeping package of measures announced by the Chancellor on Wednesday, including giving firms which have furloughed staff a £1,000 bonus to keep workers in jobs.

While warning that ‘hardship lies ahead’, he insisted no-one will be left ‘without hope’, as he revealed plans to cut stamp duty, slash VAT on food, accommodation and attractions to 5% and give diners a discount to support pubs and restaurants.

Speaking in the Commons Mr Sunak said his plan would help protect livelihoods after the economy contracted by 25% in just two months.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies will give its initial analysis of the summer economic update on Thursday.

Business Secretary Alok Sharma is also due to appear before the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee about the response to coronavirus.

Ahead of the publication of weekly test and trace data, former health secretary Jeremy Hunt has suggested taxi drivers and people arriving at airports as well as NHS staff could be subject to mass testing in efforts to identify asymptomatic people and their contacts.

Mr Hunt, now chairman of the health and social care committee, said certain groups within the population, as well as people in particular parts of the country, could be tested to try to better track Covid-19 infections.

Speaking during an online conversation with Royal Society of Medicine president Professor Sir Simon Wessely on Wednesday, he said: ‘I think looking at healthcare staff, looking at taxi drivers is another group, airport arrivals is another group.

‘I think we need to think about mass testing amongst groups of the population as well as parts of the country like Leicester and so on, as our best way of finding out where the asymptomatics are and feeding them into the system so that their contacts can be isolated.’

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