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Live Reporting

Ross McKee, Niall Glynn and David Wilson

All times stated are UK

  1. Goodnight

    That's it from us on the BBC News NI live page for today.

    We'll be back again tomorrow morning to keep you across all of the day's developments and updates.

    Enjoy the rest of the sunny evening.

  2. Today's key developments

    It's been a particularly busy Monday as Northern Ireland continues to battle the coronavirus pandemic.

    Here are today's key developments:

  3. Lockdown and good weather = Greater demand for water

    NI Water has asked the public to reduce water use, especially from hose pipes, as "demand is outstripping supply".

    It issued an urgent plea not to waste water as reservoirs levels are low due a combination of dry weather and extra demand during the pandemic.

    Since the beginning of lockdown, NI Water has seen a significant rise in the amount of water used in the home.


    The firm warned if demand continues at the current level "customers in certain areas will lose supply".

    It has advised people not to fill swimming pools, paddling pools or leave hoses and sprinklers on overnight.

    NI Water said it needed to ensure "everyone has sufficient water for hygiene and hand washing".

    Read more.

  4. Over 70s must be 'particularly careful'

    People aged over 70 need to be “particularly careful” if they are taking advantage of the easing of lockdown, the first minister has said.

    Arlene Foster said while not automatically in the shielding group, over 70s are “more vulnerable”.

    older couple

    “As such, they are advised to be particularly strict when following social distancing guidance.

    "They are at an increased risk of severe disease and would need to continue to be particularly careful if they take advantage of any of the new relaxations,” she told the daily Stormont briefing.

  5. WATCH: Coronavirus Catch-up

    Our weekly Coronavirus Catch-up is under way.

    Join us here on our live page or on our Facebook page where we will answer your questions.

    Just click the play button at the top of this page.

    cobd catch up
  6. Tracing programme in touch with 388 people

    Louise Cullen

    BBC News NI

    Northern Ireland’s contact tracing programme has been in touch with 388 people who have Covid-19 in its first two weeks of its operation.

    Those calls have led to 518 contacts being traced.

    The Department of Health has appealed for anyone with any symptoms of Covid-19 – a raised temperature, a new continuous cough or a loss of sense of smell or taste - to get tested as quickly as possible.


    Tests can be arranged for anyone over the age of five by going online to or by calling 119.

    An appointment will be arranged at one of the four drive-in centres around Northern Ireland.

    Anyone who can’t get to one of the centres in Belfast, Craigavon, Londonderry or Enniskillen can request a kit be sent to their home, to be returned to the lab.

    People must isolate at least until they get their test result back.

  7. 'It will be wonderful to get outside'

    jim kilpatrick
    Image caption: Jim Kilpatrick said it will be a relief to leave his house

    Transplant patient Jim Kilpatrick from Donaghadee, who has been shielding since the start of lockdown said it was very good news that from next Monday he will be able to go outside.

    "It will be wonderful," he told Evening Extra.

    "We've got this lovely weather, we've got the opportunity to get back out and enjoy it.

    "I'm looking forward to getting out to do what may appear to be normal things - it's nice to be able to even go into town and have a little walk along the seafront.

    "That will be something done - bearing in mind social distancing - but at the same time it will be a relief from being around the house all of the time."

    Magi Hogg
    Image caption: Magi Hogg has been shielding alone since the start of lockdown

    Another person who has been shielding, Maggie Hogg from Glengormley, said she was "so looking forward to getting out.

    "I never thought I'd be able to do 10 weeks in the house on my own, but I have had a brilliant support network."

    She said she was hoping to meet up with a friend who has also been shielding so they can go for a walk together.

  8. 'New mindset' needed for caravan park holiday makers

    Caravan park owners here are preparing to welcome back holiday makers after it was announced earlier today that they will reopen on 20 July.

    Victoria Bailey runs a park in Enniskillen.

    She told BBC Radio Ulster's Evening Extra they are currently working to implement social distancing at the park.

    caravan park

    “At the moment we are looking at what we can do to mitigate any risk on site,” she said.

    That caravans are all 10 metres apart helps, she said, but she also needs guests to adapt.

    “It’s about making sure people have it in their mindset, that it is not just about themselves, it’s about thinking of others too,” she said.

  9. Dublin Zoo to reopen to the public tomorrow

    Dublin Zoo is set to reopen to the public tomorrow, with a number of new health and safety measures in place.

    The zoo is limiting its daily allowance of visitors into two slots of 500 people in each session, that is 10% of usual capacity at any one time.

    Visitors attending the morning and afternoon sessions must also follow a new one-way route around the attraction and adhere to social-distancing regulations.

    View more on twitter
  10. Tune in later for another Coronavirus Catch-up

    We'll be live from 19:00 tonight for another Coronavirus Catch-up.

    If you're wanting to tune in, you can click the link at the top of this live page later on this evening, or you can also catch us on the BBC News NI Facebook page.

    Remember if you want your question answered by the experts you can email it to

    Coronavirus Catch-up
  11. Hotels and B&Bs looking for more detail

    Michael Stewart, from the hotel House in Belfast, told BBC News NI's Evening Extra programme it was great to get a date from the economy minister on hotels, but the problem is there needs to be more detail.

    "From my understanding you can book a hotel room but you can't get breakfast, go to a restaurant or have a drink," he said.

    He said that food and beverage is critical to make revenues.

    pulling pint

    Sharon Schindler, owner of Shola Coach House B&B in Portrush, said her guests come for "a small intimate experience" and to socialise, which is a challenge in the current climate.

    "We're hoping to get some sector specific guidelines," she said.

  12. BreakingOne death reported in Republic of Ireland

    Today's update from the Republic of Ireland’s National Public Health Emergency Team shows there has been one further death in ROI linked to Covid-19 since Sunday.

    It brings the total number of deaths in the Republic of Ireland to 1,650.

    The Irish department of health says there are now 25,062 confirmed cases after another 77 were recorded.

    Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan says as restrictions on public life ease, people shouldn’t forget there is “no vaccine and no cure” for Covid-19

    "We must continue to do all we can to interrupt the spread of this virus,” he said.

    Dr Tony Holohan
  13. Will hotel bars and restaurants be able to open?

    Gareth Gordon

    BBC News NI Political Correspondent

    A question that wasn't answered at the briefing and that I think a lot of people will require an answer to pretty soon: Will pubs inside hotels be open on 20 July - the indicative date for hotels opening?

    A lot of people will want the answer to that, not least the hoteliers, because that's one of the reasons for staying in hotels, that you have access to the pubs and the restaurants.


    A lot of people may not want to stay in a hotel which is like a shell of its previous self and doesn't have the bars inside and doesn't have the restaurants.

    So I'm not sure how long the executive will get away with refusing to give an answer to that and saying lets wait for the economy minister Diane Dodds to bring forward a paper.

  14. North Antrim politicians welcome tourism dates

    Mark Devenport

    BBC News NI Political Editor

    North Antrim politicians have broadly welcomed the executive’s latest decisions on re-opening hotels and caravan parks.

    The constituency - home to the Giant’s Causeway and many other attractions - is particularly dependent on the tourist sector.

    Causeway Coast and Glens Councillor Darryl Wilson, of the UUP, told the Inside Politics Q&A podcast people getting to visit beauty spots is one stage of the process of recovery and called for “the application of common sense” on 20 July when caravan parks and hotels are due to reopen.

    giants causway

    The DUP's Mervyn Storey told the podcast caravan owners believe they can put social distancing in place and respect the health guidelines.

    Sinn Féin MLA Philip McGuigan said it was imperative that the executive’s decision making should be based on public health interests.

    TUV leader Jim Allister told Inside Politics Q&A that the Covid-19 regulations had to be logical and the restrictions on static caravans had been unnecessarily oppressive.

    Inside Politics Q&A is available on BBC Sounds and via the BBC NI News website.

  15. People may be able to use caravans before 20 July

    Deputy First Minister Michelle O'Neill has said that people may be able go to caravans and self-catering accommodation sooner than the scheduled date of 20 July "given that they are self-contained units".

    "Again this will depend on the scientific advice as we move through the next weeks and days," she said.

    Hotels and tourist accommodation in Northern Ireland will be allowed to reopen on 20 July.

    Michelle O'Neill

    "It's important to re-emphasise that our single most important consideration in our recovery plan remains saving lives and keeping people safe," Ms O'Neill said.

    "The phased approach to reopening tourist accommodation is no different. It will be focused on ensuring the safety of workers and guests."

    She said it was important to remember the dates are indicative and depend on controlling the rate of transmission of the virus.

  16. First Minister warns of 'new evidence of complacency'

    Arlene Foster says the public will prolong the coronavirus recovery by disregarding the government guidance.

    She told today’s daily briefing that while most people have been adhering to public health advice, “we have seen new evidence of complacency” over the weekend.

    “In the worst case there has been flagrant disregard for public safety.

    She said scenes like that witnessed on Ballyholme beach on Friday night “are simply not acceptable”.

    Arlene foster

    She said the world has not beaten Covid-19.

    “This is a global pandemic without a vaccine yet. And it still dwells among us and it loves mass gatherings.

    “All of us want Northern Ireland to return as quickly as possible to something like the society we took for granted just three months ago.

    “But unfortunately, you will prolong that journey if you ignore the public health advice and create the conditions where coronavirus can thrive.”

  17. 'Baby steps in the right direction'

    Speaking about people who are currently shielding, Deputy First Minister Michelle O'Neill says the advice from scientists and medics is that the risk of exposure to the virus has significantly reduced, "however you are still very vulnerable to the effect of this disease".

    "You have come this far, so make sure you protect yourself as best you can until we're out the other side of this," Ms O'Neill said.

    "Again we recognise that these are baby steps, but they are baby steps in the right direction."

    Michelle O'Neill
  18. People currently shielding able to go outside from 8 June

    First Minister Arlene Foster has said people who are shielding will be able to go outside from 8 June.

    Speaking at the daily Stormont briefing, Mrs Foster said the decision had been taken following scientific and medical advice.

    “We can advise that from next Monday, 8 June, those who are shielding will be able to spend time outside with people from their own household, or one person from another household whilst ensuring social distancing is observed.”

    The first minister says this is a “reasonable and proportionate first step” and people will receive a letter in coming days advising them.

    At the start of the lockdown, more than 80,000 people in high-risk groups received Department of Health letters advising them to remain indoors for 12 weeks.

  19. Watch NI Executive briefing live

    The daily Northern Ireland Executive briefing is due to begin shortly. First Minister Arlene Foster and Deputy First Minister Michelle O'Neill are at the podiums today.

    You can watch it live by pressing the play button at the top of this page.

    daily briefing promo
  20. 'Hospitality workers must be protected for reopening'

    Unite the Union has called on the executive to "better protect" hospitality workers coming out of lockdown.

    Unite's Neil Moore said that, after consulting hundreds of hospitality workers, he proposes using the furlough period as an opportunity to "up-skill" employees and suggests a range of measures to better protect the hospitality sector, including testing and contact tracing and supply of personal protective equipment.

    Earlier, it was announced hotels and tourist accommodation in Northern Ireland will be allowed to reopen on 20 July.

    Hotel room