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Compulsory mask wearing is set to be ditched when Covid restrictions relax on the long-awaited Freedom Day on July 19 along with social distancing, according to reports.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson reportedly wants to scrap the legal requirement and possible fines of up to £6,400 to make mask wearing a choice.

It is also understood that the PM will be ending the need to check in by scanning a code or signing a form when entering a pub or bar.

"It's all part of a shift from legal enforcement to common sense," a source told The Sun.

“There will be some official guidance that in certain settings, like a crowded train, it might make sense to wear a mask.

“But it will no longer be compulsory. People will be able to decide for themselves whether or not to cover their face.”

The Sunday Times also report that the one-metre-plus rule that pubs and restaurants have to abide by inside will also be removed.

Robert Jenrick, cabinet minister, told Sky News that the country will soon be moving into a period "where there won't be legal restrictions" and "the state won't be telling you what to do".

He added: "But you will want to exercise a degree of personal responsibility and judgment – different people will come to different conclusions on things like masks, for example."

The PM has also reportedly won support from new Health Secretary Sajid Javid in tearing up the rules on compulsory face masks from July 19.

The current mask laws make it a legal requirement for people to wear a covering on public transport, shops, theatres and most other indoor public spaces.

People found without them can be handed a fine of up to £200 in the first instance, doubling every repeat offence up to a maximum of £6,400.

However Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty has said he wants to see rules on masks stay after July 19.

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This has been echoed by other health advisers, including British Medical Association boss Chaand Nagpaul who wants to see mask wearing be a "targeted measure" to help stop the spread.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has backed the PM's thoughts and stated he expects to stop wearing a mask "as soon as possible" after Freedom Day.

Environment Secretary George Eustice said he wants to get back to "normal".

"I think a lot of people will want to shed those masks," he added.

The PM is expected to set out the Government's final step in their "roadmap out of lockdown" on July 12.

  • Boris Johnson
  • Coronavirus
  • Face Masks

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