UK News Lockdown easing postponed as PM ‘squeezes the brake’ to control virus
Coronavirus shielding to end in Scotland from August 1
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced the change at the Scottish Government’s briefing on Thursday.The First Minister also revealed some further easing on restrictions for people in this category from Friday, including enabling them to meet more people both indoors and outdoors.
A planned easing of England’s lockdown has been postponed a day before it was due to come into effect, as the Prime Minister warned the country “cannot be complacent” amid a rise in the prevalence of coronavirus in the community.
Measures due to be lifted on Saturday, including allowing small wedding receptions and reopening bowling alleys and casinos, have been delayed for at least two weeks.
UK must be ‘vigilant’ over second Covid-19 spike, says Prime Minister
Boris Johnson was speaking on a visit to Nottingham.Speaking on a visit to Nottingham on Tuesday, Boris Johnson said the most important thing is for people in all communities to “heed the advice” before restrictions can be eased across the country.
And in a strengthening of precautions, Boris Johnson announced that face coverings will become mandatory in indoor settings such as museums, galleries, cinemas and places of worship from August 8.
In a Downing Street press conference on Friday, the Prime Minister revealed what he described as a “pretty punchy” new slogan – “Hands, face, space” – for people to be mindful of in their efforts to control the spread of Covid-19.
Standing alongside Mr Johnson, England’s chief medical officer, Professor Chris Whitty, warned that it might not be possible to ease lockdown further, saying the UK has “probably reached near the limit or the limits” of what can be done to reopen society.
Friday’s news came after local lockdown measures were announced in parts of the North West of England and areas of West Yorkshire, banning people from different households meeting indoors or in gardens following a spike in virus cases.
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Mr Johnson told the briefing: “As we see these rises around the world, we can’t fool ourselves that we are exempt. We must be willing to react to the first signs of trouble.”
He added: “We cannot be complacent and I won’t stand by and allow this virus to threaten to cause more pain and more heartache in our country.
He said that, with numbers rising, “our assessment is that we should squeeze that brake pedal in order to keep the virus under control”.
The Office for National Statistics said there has been an increase in the number of people testing positive for coronavirus in England, with Mr Johnson saying the prevalence of the virus in the community is likely to be rising for the first time since May.
According to the ONS, between July 20 and 26 there were around 0.78 new Covid-19 infections for every 10,000 people in the community population in England – equal to around 4,200 new cases per day.
PM hopes for staycation as he is asked if Covid actions ‘cancelled summer’
Boris Johnson said some of his best holidays had been ‘bucket and spade jobs’.Boris Johnson was asked whether he had “cancelled summer” this year after announcing that a further easing of lockdown across England due on Saturday had been postponed.
This is up from an estimated 2,800 new cases a day in the previous week.
Data released on Friday also showed the R value for the UK is between 0.8 to 0.9, a slight change from 0.7 to 0.9.
On Thursday evening it was announced that people from different households in Greater Manchester, parts of east Lancashire and West Yorkshire would no longer be allowed to meet each other inside their homes or in gardens.
The new rules, which came into effect from midnight, also ban members of two different households from mixing in pubs, restaurants and other hospitality venues, but these businesses will remain open for those visiting individually or from the same household.
Prof Whitty told the briefing: “I think what we’re seeing from the data from ONS and other data is that we have probably reached near the limit or the limits of what we can do in terms of opening up society.
“So what that means potentially is that, if we wish to do more things in the future, we may have to do less of some other things.
“And these will be difficult trade-offs, some of which will be decisions for Government and some of which are for all of us as citizens to do.
Bride-to-be 'devastated' as wedding plans ruined by PM announcement
A tearful bride-to-be says she is "absolutely devastated" after her wedding plans were ruined by the government's decision to postpone the easing of lockdown restrictions in England. © Sky News Screen Grab Bride-to-be Amanda Kellett says she is 'devastated' by the government's announcement Amanda Kellett, from Grimsby, was due to marry her fiance Christopher Carr on 8 August and had booked a wedding reception for family and friends to attend.
“But we have to be realistic about this. The idea that we can open up everything and keep the virus under control is clearly wrong.”
PMhas announced today that some of the proposed changes to the rules in August will be postponed for at least a fortnight.
This is to keep the virus under control. Read his full statement here:
— UK Prime Minister (@10DowningStreet)
Despite the delay to the Government’s road map on reopening, Mr Johnson said he encouraged people “still to think of wonderful staycations here in the UK”.
Other reopenings which will not take place as planned across England on Saturday include indoor performances, pilots of larger gatherings in sports venues and conference centres, and close-contact services such as facials and make-up application.
Mr Johnson said that, while most people are following the rules, there will be a “greater police presence” to ensure the public is adhering to the requirements around face coverings and stressed that local authorities can close down premises and cancel events which are not following the guidance.
Shielding advice will still be paused as planned on Saturday and guidance around allowing more discretion for employers with regard to staff returning to work will also go ahead, the Prime Minister said.
Accepting that Friday’s announcement would be a “real blow” to people who had wedding plans or those who can no longer celebrate Eid as they had hoped, Mr Johnson said “we simply cannot take the risk” but vowed to open up more fully “as soon as we possibly can”.
Five F1 teams to appeal against Racing Point brake duct verdict .
Five Formula 1 teams have filed their intent to appeal the Racing Point brake duct case - with the Silverstone outfit itself facing up against a group of four rivals .On Friday morning the FIA stewards issued their verdict on the case, which centred on the protests lodged by Renault at the Styrian, Hungarian and British GPs regarding the legality of Racing Point's brake ducts.Racing Point was fined €400,000 and docked 15 World Championship points, but is allowed to keep using the same duct design for the rest of the season.