Spanish children have been kept at home since 14 March, under strict measures to curb the spread of Covid-19.

Now Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez aims to relax the rule on 27 April so they can “get some fresh air”.

Barcelona Mayor Ada Colau, who has young children herself, this week pleaded with the government to allow children outside.

Spain has seen more than 20,000 deaths since the start of the pandemic and almost 200,000 reported cases.

In a televised briefing on Saturday evening, Mr Sánchez said Spain had left behind “the most extreme moments and contained the brutal onslaught of the pandemic”.

But he said he would ask parliament to extend Spain’s state of alarm to 9 May as the achievements made were “still insufficient and above all fragile” and could not be jeopardised by “hasty decisions”.

Spain’s latest coronavirus figures appear to confirm the virus’s downward curve, given that at one point earlier this month the country was recording nearly 1,000 deaths each day.

Also, the number of daily new infections appears to have stabilised. Although the health ministry has warned that weekend figures can be misleading because of a delay by local authorities in reporting data, the apparently improving picture will further encourage calls for the lifting of certain restrictions.

There has been growing social and political pressure on Prime Minister Sánchez to allow children, in particular, to go outside. Opposition leader Pablo Casado tweeted that “these little heroes are climbing the walls” after more than a month of not being allowed out beyond the confines of their homes.

However, a poll published by 40dB for El País reported that 59% of those asked thought that the lockdown should be maintained as it is for the time being.

Another 410 deaths were reported on Sunday – fewer than Saturday. The latest toll is well down from the peak of the pandemic, and the government allowed some non-essential workers to resume construction and manufacturing last Monday.