Groups of four people from different households will be allowed to meet indoors at pubs, cafes and restaurants after Wales’ firebreak lockdown ends.

The sale of alcohol after 10pm will still be banned when new regulations come in on Monday, 9 November.

Pubs and restaurants will reopen at the end of the lockdown, but the terms for their operation had been unclear.

Larger groups of people who all live in the same house will be allowed to eat and drink out together.

First Minister Mark Drakeford asked people visit such places in the smallest groups possible.

Drakeford said reopening would be “subject to strict protections discussed with the hospitality sector, including advance booking, time-limited slots and verified identification”.

“Our clear advice to people in Wales is that we should visit these places in as small a groups as possible and, for many, this will only be the people we live with,” he told the Welsh Parliament.

“But we have listened to those young people, and single people especially have told us how important it is for them to meet some friends and other family members.”

Since 23 October, hospitality businesses have been closed in Wales for the 17-day shutdown, aimed at reducing the number of coronavirus cases and easing pressure on the NHS.

Public Health Wales has warned about the transmission of coronavirus in pubs and restaurants.

Dr Giri Shankar said: “At the moment there still is a concern about ongoing community transmission - and not just pubs but all of the hospitality premises are high risk - where such interactions happen are a continuing concern.”

Children under 11 will not count.

Organised activities, where 15 people can meet indoors or 30 outdoors, will not be able to involve selling or drinking alcohol.

There will be a separate exception for up to 15 people to attend a reception for a wedding, civil partnership or a funeral wake, but this will need to involve a sit-down meal.

Prior to the firebreak most people in Wales living in local lockdown areas were only able to meet their own household in a pub.

Alistair Darby, CEO of Wales’ largest brewer S.A. Brain, welcomed the relaxation of the single household rule but raised concerns about the “verified identification” of customers.

He said it was not clear what it meant as there are no ID cards and the scheme could result in “frustration and irritation” towards staff.

Darby added that the company supported test and trace, but would be worried that verification could lead to conflict between staff and customers.