'Season's meetings': Newspapers react to easing of COVID rules over festive period

Andy Wells
·Freelance Writer

The news that three households will be able to mix for five days over Christmas dominates Britain’s newspaper front pages on Wednesday.

The UK government and devolved administrations have agreed a joint plan to relax social distancing rules from 23 to 27 December, allowing friends and family to hug for the first time in months.

Some newspapers reacted positively to the “mini Christmas”, while others highlighted that while rules will be relaxed, they will still have to be followed. 

The Christmas plan was agreed following a Cobra meeting chaired by Cabinet minister Michael Gove that brought together the Westminster government and the devolved administrations.

Despite the new measures, families and groups of friends will still face difficult decisions and restrictions on their activities.

The bubbles will have to be exclusive over the five-day period, meaning people cannot shift from one group to another – although children whose parents are separated will be allowed to move between them.

People aged over 65 in care homes will not be able to join their loved ones for Christmas, and in families where three children live away from home, they would not all be able to return for the festive period.