The re-opening of society after the enforced restrictions of the past year takes a significant step forward from today as a number of regulations end.
From today, non-essential retail (like clothes shops) will begin trading again on an appointment basis while the inter-county travel restriction will be lifted as will the ban on non-elite adult group sports training.
Alongside retailers, hairdressers, barbers, and beauticians can reopen to customers with appointments
There is also a distinct change to the number of households that can meet up.
The Government advisory states that a maximum of three households or six people from any number of households can meet up. This limit of six does not include their children aged 12 or younger.
Fully vaccinated people can meet indoors with other fully vaccinated people as long as there are no more than three households present.
Those who are fully vaccinated can meet indoors with unvaccinated people from a single household, provided that they are not at risk of severe illness and no more than three households are present.
Organised outdoor gatherings with a maximum attendance of 15 people are permitted and that goes for outdoor training for adults in pods limited to 15 people.
There is a phased reopening of non-essential retail with click and collect, in-store by appointment only. This is ahead of the full reopening of retail from next Monday. May 17.
Libraries will be allowed to lend books but there will be no access to reader spaces or computers.
There are changes to religious services including funerals and weddings as 50 people can attend the service.
There is still a ban on “related events” for funerals but a maximum of six people can take part in an indoor wedding reception or 15 people for an outdoor gathering.
Further restrictions will be eased in early June with hotels and guesthouses re-opening on June 2 while restaurants and pubs can reopen for outdoor service on June 7.
Also on June 7, gyms, swimming pools and leisure centres can reopen while sports matches can be held without supporters present.