The next step of easing lockdown took place this week and we are just under a month away from the rules being relaxed again. 

While we are now able to meet in groups of six or two households of any size outdoors, we'll have to wait a bit longer to do so indoors. 

So this is what you need to know about what the rules will be and when they will change.

What are the rules now?

You are allowed to meet outside in a public place in groups of six people or two households of any size. 

You are not allowed to meet indoors with family and friends and no overnight stays are allowed. 

However there are some exceptions to being inside such as for care givers and tradespeople. 

When will the rules be relaxed?

The Government will look at stage 3 around the May 17 mark. 

At this point the government will look to continue easing limits on seeing friends and family wherever possible, allowing people to decide on the appropriate level of risk for their circumstances. 

This means that most legal restrictions on meeting others outdoors will be lifted - although gatherings of over 30 people will remain illegal. 

Indoors, the rule of six or two households will apply.

Will I be able to hug my family and friends?

The Government will also update the advice on social distancing between friends and family, including hugging.

But until this point, people should continue to keep their distance from anyone not in their household or support bubble.

Before Step 4 begins, the Government will complete a review of social distancing and other long-term measures that have been put in place to cut transmission.

This will inform decisions on the timing and circumstances under which the rules on 1 metre plus, the wearing of face coverings and other measures may be lifted.

Will I be able to go to indoor venues with my friends and family?

In May it is expected businesses in all but the highest risk sectors will be able to reopen.

Guidance will remain in place and businesses may not cater for groups bigger than the legal limits.

Indoor hospitality will reopen and venues will not have to serve a substantial meal with alcoholic drinks; nor will there be a curfew.

Customers will, however, have to order, eat and drink while seated.

Indoor entertainment venues such as cinemas and children’s play areas; the rest of the accommodation sector, including hotels, hostels and B&Bs; and indoor adult group sports and exercise classes will also be able to open.