Leicester’s local lockdown will be partially eased to allow some businesses to reopen but Health Secretary Matt Hancock said coronavirus cases remain too high to ease all the restrictions in the city.
Nail bars, beauty salons and tanning booths can reopen from Wednesday, while guidance telling outdoor music venues and theatres to stay closed will be dropped.
But residents in the lockdown area will not be able to meet inside a private home or garden of someone they have not formed a “support bubble” with.
The easing will bring the city into line with the easing of restrictions introduced for much of the nation on July 11 and 13.
Mr Hancock said: “My gratitude goes out to the people of Leicester who have all made sacrifices to keep the virus at bay and protect their local communities.
“The rate of infection has now dropped to a safe enough level to allow further businesses including beauty salons, nail bars and some outdoor venues to reopen in the area.
“Current restrictions on gatherings must remain in place to further bring down the rate of infection.”
Spas, massage and tattoo parlours, and body and skin piercing services will also be able to reopen on Wednesday morning.
But the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) said infection rates are still too high for a full easing, so restrictions on gatherings will continue in line with Greater Manchester and parts of West Yorkshire and east Lancashire.
Shielding for the most vulnerable will continue but with easing in Leicester to allow individuals to meet in a group of up to six people outdoors while maintaining social distancing.
Leicester was the first area in the UK to have a local lockdown imposed, with Mr Hancock announcing the measures on June 29 as the rest of the nation was on course for greater freedoms.
The city had 193 new cases in the seven days to August 14, down from 226 in the previous week, according to Government figures.
Both represent great improvements on the rate when the local restrictions were imposed but Leicester still has one of the highest rates in the country.
City mayor Sir Peter Soulsby welcomed the relaxation for shielders, saying it “will greatly benefit their mental health, while still keeping their physical health as the greatest priority”.
But he added: “What we really don’t want is to see numbers increase which could result in more severe restrictions being put in place once again in parts, or all, of the city.”
The DHSC said outdoor swimming pools will also be able to reopen, but the only one in Leicestershire is in Ashby de la Zouch, which is not in the lockdown area and was already open.
Minal Parmar, owner of the Beauty Refinery in Leicester, welcomed the easing after five months of closure.
“I’m super excited because we have been closed since March and obviously lost lots of business throughout,” he said.
“I’ve answered so many phone calls from clients during lockdown and I just can’t wait to be open tomorrow.
“Luckily, we have four treatment rooms so we can take one client at a time in each room.
“We have PPE (personal protective equipment) too, face masks and we’ve obviously always been using the gloves.”
The permission to reopen after months of hardship was also welcomed by Aleksandrs Cibulskis, the owner of the Route 66 tattoo studio.
“It has been difficult. I understand (it) has been nobody’s fault with the virus and everything,” he said.
“For the whole time I have had to pay for rent and bills – I was given a grant but it was not enough.
“But now we can open – it is fantastic. I’m happy, very happy.”