While there’s no immediate end to the lockdown, the easing of restrictions means plenty of Brits can make the most of the sun.
The PM’s announcement came after a Bank Holiday weekend when police admitted they were fighting a losing battle against people flouting the strict laws to tackle coronavirus.
During the long weekend in early May, parks were packed and beaches were full.
Mr Johnson said Brits can take “more and even unlimited amounts of outdoor exercise”, adding: “You can sit in the sun in your local park, you can drive to other destinations, you can even play sports – but only with members of your own household.”
But he warned: “You must obey the rules on social distancing and to enforce those rules we will increase the fines for the small minority who break them.”
And today the nation is making the most of the directive.
Swimmers have spent the day swimming in the sea off Bournemouth beach, while the town’s prom is busy with cyclists and pedestrians.
In London, sunbathers have stripped off next to Tower Bridge to soak up the sunshine.
The car park at Barry Island in Wales is crowded with vehicles as day-trippers head for the seaside, while visitors took punts out onto the River Cam in Cambridge.
For much of lockdown, the weather has been unusually beautiful, and forecasters say we had one of the hottest Aprils on record.
Yesterday, parts of the UK were hotter than California.
In several locations across the South East, the mercury hit 24.2C in the afternoon, making the UK warmer than Ibiza and Malibu.
Today’s sunshine and clear skies are part of a heatwave created by warm air from Spain.
Tomorrow could even be the hottest day of the year so far with forecasters predicting highs of 28C.