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54% of UK public will miss some aspects of coronavirus restrictions – study

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More than half of the UK public say they will miss some aspects of the coronavirus restrictions introduced during the past year, according to a survey.

Some 54% said they will miss some aspects of lockdown, such as family time, quieter roads and staying at home, according to research by Policy Institute at King’s College London and Ipsos Mori.

The research, part of a wider study with BBC News also found that 32% of 2,442 adults aged 16 and over said the past year has been similar to or better than average for them personally.

And 19% said the last year has been better than they expected it to be when the first lockdown was introduced, while 21% said their finances have improved.

Younger people (aged 16-35) were twice as likely as older adults to say their year had been better than expected.

Half (49%) of the public said the last year has been worse than expected, with women and the over 65s more likely to feel this way.

A quieter than normal Edinburgh Waverley station (Andrew Milligan/PA) / PA Archive

The research also found that 28% of people feel closer to their immediate family, 19% feel closer to their neighbours and 31% feel less close to their friends.

While 43% expect the pandemic to worsen their mental health, 12% said they this will improve due to the crisis, and 15% say their physical health will be better.

Half of the public (52%) believe the pandemic will negatively affect young people in the long-term, while 22% think there will be no impact and 10% think their prospects will improve.

Professor Bobby Duffy, director of the Policy Institute at King’s College London, said: “There is no doubt that the public would rather the pandemic hadn’t happened at all – but that doesn’t mean it’s been all bad for everyone, or that people see it deeply affecting their future.

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