The Northern Irish hospitality industry will join the rest of the UK nations in reopening indoor dining, after the Northern Ireland Executive gave the go-ahead for it to resume from this Monday (24 May).
There is no meal requirement for hospitality venues to resume service inside. The rule of six from unlimited households will still apply for diners, but and children under 12 will not be counted in that total.
However, up to 10 people will be permitted in one booking if they are all from a single household. Venues can offer table service only and 1metre social distancing is required between each party.
The Executive stipulated that diners must provide contact details, and that face coverings must be worn if they leave their tables.
However, live music and dancing remains banned for now.
Banqueting events will also be permitted, subject to a maximum capacity risk assessment, with all the above restrictions applying.
First minister Arlene Foster said: “I’m pleased that we are in a position to confirm the opening of more parts of our society from Monday. After an anxious wait for many, this is great news for our people and our economy. I want to thank the public for their patience and perseverance and I commend all those sectors who have worked diligently to prepare for restart.”
Deputy first minister Michelle O’Neill added: “This latest set of easements will have wide-reaching benefits for individuals, families, businesses and workers. And after what has been an incredibly tough time for everyone, we want people to take the good of being able to do the things they have missed; whether that’s a meal out with friends, a visit to your parents’ house, a family day trip, or a dance class.”