// Click-and-collect for garden centres and plant nurseries in Northern Ireland can resume April 1
// All other click-and-collect from other non-essential retailers in Northern Ireland can resume April 12
// The Executive published its Pathway Out Of Restrictions blueprint earlier this month, but no shop reopening dates were given
Stormont ministers have revealed some dates as part of lockdown relaxations for Northern Ireland, including the return of click-and-collect services for non-essential retailers.
From April 1, click-and-collect purchases will be allowed from garden centres and plant nurseries.
On April 12, all other non-essential retailers will be allowed to resume click-and-collect services.
- Calls for “indicative dates” for Northern Ireland lockdown exit
- Scotland to ease lockdown for non-essential retailers from April 26
- Wales to “gradually” lift lockdown on non-essential retailers from March 22
An indicative date of when non-essential retailers in Northern Ireland would be able to reopen their shops has not yet been confirmed.
The April 12 measures, which also includes a lifting of “stay at home” orders to be replaced by a “stay local” message, are subject to final ratification by the Executive in the week before they come into effect, likely on April 8.
Northern Ireland has been living under lockdown since a spike of Covid-19 cases in December.
The Executive published its Pathway Out Of Restrictions blueprint earlier this month.
It includes five steps along nine pathways – retail; hospitality; education and young people; work; culture, heritage and entertainment; sports and leisure; travel and tourism; worship and ceremonies; and home and community.
The five stages of restriction begin with lockdown then extend to cautious first steps, gradual easing, further easing, and preparing for the future.
The plan did not initially include any dates, with Stormont making it clear it would make decisions based on data instead.
The news comes the same day Scottish Parliament updated its lockdown exit plan.
Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed that hairdressers and some additional non-essential shops such as garden centres and homeware stores, plus non-essential click-and-collect services, can start to reopen open from April 5.
However, most non-essential retailers in Scotland will remain closed until April 26, the original date that been previously set reopening.
Other high street premises, such as gyms, museums, libraries, and beer gardens will also be able to reopen on April 26, along with limited outdoor service for cafes, restaurants and bars.
Over in England, the lockdown exit date for non-essential has been set for no earlier than April 12.
In Wales, non-essential retail can gradually reopen from March 22, although most will remain shut and will reopen on April 12 – the same as England.
with PA Wires