26th March 2021
New lockdown rules come into force in England on Monday 29th March 2021, as Coronavirus restrictions ease. They are set out in the government's Covid-19 Response - Spring 2021 Summary.
Together the changes on 8th and 29th March are, rather confusingly, termed 'Step 1'.
From 29th March, outdoor gatherings will be allowed, with a maximum of:
Logically, this means you can meet other people for bike rides, up to the 6 people/two households limit.
Outdoor sports facilities like tennis courts and open-air swimming pools can reopen on 29th March.
Cafés can currently offer takeaway food and drink, and that won't change on 29th March.
The 'stay at home' rule ends on 29th March, so you can drive somewhere to go on a bike ride.
The summary says that people should '...minimise the number of journeys they make where possible, avoiding travel at the busiest times and routes.'
Travel abroad remains prohibited, except for a small number of permitted reasons. A taskforce is due to report on global travel on 12th April, and the earliest the rules could change is 17th May 2021.
British Cycling says that from 29th March, it is restarting group rides, coaching sessions and cycle sport events.
British Cycling-affiliated club rides can be for up to 15 people - because the rules are different to the rules for social contact. Participants will have to stay 1m apart when riding, and 2m apart at other times.
Informal group rides, where friends meet up, are restricted to 6 people or two households.
Step 2 is no earlier than 12th April. Hairdressers, libraries, gyms, campsites, themes parks and outdoor hospitality will be able to start up again.
In Step 2, you'll be allowed to stop at a café, but you will have to sit outside.