“While many businesses would have been hoping to operate at full capacity in a few weeks’ time it is better than they can operate at reduced capacity rather than being shut down completely again if we hit another peak.”
The source added that the delay would likely be for “a few weeks”.
Ministers have faced pressure from health officials after they called on the Government to delay the June 21 reopening – over concerns about Covid variants and increased pressure on British health services.
Medical experts say an extension would mean more vaccinations were completed, offering greater protection to the public.
Failure to deliver the June 21 “freedom day” will come as a major blow to many sectors.
A new Covid “mutation” – K417N – believed to be evolved from the Delta variant, has recently emerged.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps announced that Portugal would be removed from the green list of travel destinations on Thursday.
“It has also been observed once in Nepal (which does very little genomic sequencing) and 14 times in Japan, of which 13 samples are from airport quarantine from travellers in Nepal.”
Latest Government data from June 3 shows almost 40 million people have had their first dose of the vaccine – representing over three quarters of British adults.
In addition, over half of adults have now been fully inoculated (26.9 million).