Here are five things you need to know about the coronavirus outbreak this Thursday evening. We’ll have another update for you on Friday morning.
1. Quarantine rules lifted for Portugal travel
UK tourists returning from Portugal will no longer need to quarantine after it was added to the travel corridor list, but travellers returning from Croatia will now have to self-isolate. Fourteen days of self-isolation will also be required for people returning from Austria and Trinidad and Tobago from 04:00 BST on Saturday, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has said, following a rise in the number of cases of coronavirus. Meanwhile, the Scottish government has added Switzerland to the lists of countries on its quarantine list. Here’s a reminder of which countries you can visit from the UK.
2. Pupils get record GCSE grades
Thousands of pupils have received record GCSE results after the most disrupted academic year in UK history. The pass rate has increased sharply, particularly in England, following the government’s U-turn on how they would be graded. Pupils have spoken to the BBC of their relief at their results, with one saying it felt like “a weight” had been lifted, after the confusion over A-level results last week. However, the exams crisis rumbles on, with the national statistics regulator announcing it is stepping in to review the algorithm used by Ofqual to decide A-level grades for students who could not sit exams.
- How were this year’s results decided?
3. Scotland’s gyms and swimming pools to reopen on 31 August
Gyms, swimming pools and indoor sports courts will be able to reopen in Scotland from 31 August, in a further easing of the nation’s lockdown restrictions, Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has announced. The facilities were previously expected to open in mid-September. Ms Sturgeon also said stadiums, live music venues and theatres could reopen in Scotland from 14 September. And she announced that police and local authorities will be given new powers to break up and disperse house parties.
4. Airbnb bans house parties
Airbnb has banned house parties worldwide as part of its efforts to comply with coronavirus-related social distancing guidelines. Occupancy will be limited to 16 people, with a few exceptions for some venues. The firm said the ban was in “the best interest of public health”, and that it would pursue legal action if guests or hosts break the rules. It comes after lockdown parties hosted in Airbnb properties led the UK’s Bed and Breakfast Association to warn it was putting communities at risk.
5. ‘My dad built me a beauty salon in the garden’
And finally, a beautician has told the BBC how her dad built her a beauty salon in their back garden amid fears coronavirus would have an impact on her career when she qualified this summer. With fewer jobs, and salons tentatively reopening with strict Covid-19 guidelines, 18-year-old Amy Harris’ dad, Andy, decided to build her a business – literally.
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And don’t forget…
…find more information, advice and guides on our coronavirus page, and the latest updates on our live page.
We’ve also been answering your exam questions here.
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