Today marks so-called 'freedom day' in England when most remaining legal coronavirus restrictions are lifted.

After 480 days since the first lockdown was announced in March last year, the country has finally reached the last step in the Government’s unlocking road map.

However, it does not mean that our lives are going back too exactly the same as they were pre-pandemic.

Some rules and restrictions are indeed staying in place, with the government and other organisations recommending the public continue to do a number of things.

Face coverings

The Government says it “expects and recommends” masks to be worn by workers and customers in crowded, enclosed spaces.

Legally, they are no longer mandatory in indoor settings, such as public transport and supermarkets, but local leaders have stepped in in certain areas with their own rules and recommendations.

In London, Sadiq Khan has said they will still be compulsory on the capital’s transport network.

Passengers in bus stations operated by combined authorities West and South Yorkshire, on the North East’s Metro and Greater Manchester’s Metrolink tram services will also be required to wear them under local rules.

Supermarket chains – including Tesco, Asda, Lidl, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s and Waitrose – will encourage customers to keep masks on.

Staff, patients and visitors in all NHS settings are being told to  continue to wear face coverings, Public Health England have said.

Test and trace and self-isolation

Positive Covid cases and their contacts identified by NHS Test and Trace will still be legally required to self-isolate for up to 10 days.

Testing will still be available after July 19 with no plans to scrap this or the test and trace system yet.

Those who start to experience Covid symptoms are still being encouraged to book a test right away.

The self-isolation requirement will be abolished for contacts of positive cases for under 18s and for double vaccinated adults from August 16.

Frontline NHS staff in England who are fully vaccinated will, in “exceptional circumstances”, be permitted to carry on working if they are “pinged” by the Covid contact tracing app, the Government has also announced.

Schools will also carry on their testing schemes until the end of term.

Travel abroad

The traffic light system for travelling abroad is to remain in place.

People arriving back in the country from green-list countries do not need to self-isolate but will need to take a test before departing and when back in England.

Amber-list arrivals will need to isolate for 10 days when back in England, and take two Covid-19 tests in this time.

This is different for people who have been double jabbed arriving back from an amber-list country, as they will not need to self-isolate from today.

Residents arriving back from a red-list country will need to self-isolate in a quarantine hotel, regardless of vaccination status.