Recap updates as Boris Johnson delays end of lockdown
Boris Johnson has announced that the final easing of lockdown restrictions will be pushed back by four weeks.
The Prime Minister announced the lifting of all measures has been delayed to July 19, instead of June 21.
Mr Johnson was joined by England’s chief medical officer, Professor Chris Whitty, and the Government’s chief scientific adviser, Sir Patrick Vallance at a press conference this evening.
The final stage of easing will see all lockdown restrictions lifted, however that looks set to take place in July instead of June 21.
Pubs and restaurants were allowed to reopen for indoor customers on May 17, in the third step of easing.
The first step in the easing took place in March when schools reopened.
In the final step all legal limits on social contact will be lifted and nightclubs will be able to reopen – it has now been delayed to July 19.
However, the Prime Minister announced that weddings and wakes can go ahead with more than 30 people from June 21 providing social distancing is observed.
Pilot events such as Euro 2020 and some theatrical performances will be allowed larger crowds than under the restrictions currently in place elsewhere as part of the research programme.
This had earlier been signaled in the day by government ministers.
Health minister Edward Argar told Sky News: ‘I’m not going to pre-empt what the Prime Minister will say later, but I know that weddings and people in that particular situation will be very much in his mind at the moment, it’s one of the things he has been looking at.’
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Recap updates as Boris Johnson delays end of lockdown
Last updated: Monday, 14 June, 2021, 18:10
- End of lockdown delayed to July 19
- Delay is to give NHS ‘extra time’
Welcome to our live blog
We will bring you all the latest updates throughout the day.
This is when the announcement will take place
Find out when the Prime Minister will make the lockdown announcement this evening.
Government not ruling out cutting down gap between Covid doses for younger people
Health minister Edward Argar said he does not rule out shortening the gap between coronavirus vaccine doses for younger adults in England.
“We have shortened the gap for the over-50s from 12 to eight weeks,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.
“But we will be guided by the advice of JCVI (Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation) and the scientists on this.
“At the moment, we believe the right thing to do is to shorten the gap for the over-50s, but we are always open to scientific advice.
“If that is the scientific advice, of course we will look at it very carefully – but at the moment the advice we are getting is the approach that we are following, which is the over-50s, and we have got the supplies to do that.”
Sir Kier Starmer has blamed ‘pathetic’ border policy for delay to end of restrictions
Sir Keir Starmer has blamed the Government’s “pathetic” border policy for a delay to lockdown easing that is widely predicted to be announced later.
The Labour leader made the comments in response to threats from composer Andrew Lloyd Webber to open his theatres to a full house on June 21 regardless of lockdown rules.
Speaking to LBC, Sir Keir said: “June 21 was supposed to be ‘Freedom Day’, and why are we not going to hit it? It looks like we’re not because of the Government’s pathetic borders policy.”
Sir Keir criticised the Government for delays to introducing hotel quarantine, the confusing traffic light system for foreign travel, and the decision to delay putting India on the red list until late April.
“The net result of (the Prime Minister’s) pathetic approach is that we’re going to have four weeks more of this.”
When pressed on Lord Lloyd Webber’s claims he is ready to be arrested, Sir Keir said: “I have to tell him to obey the rules and obey the law, of course I do. But I do understand the frustration.”
18 areas where Covid cases are rising ahead of the announcement
The latest data released by the government shows the areas where Covid cases have been rising in the last week in and around Portsmouth.
It comes ahead of Boris Johnson’s press conference at 6pm - where he is expected to delay the easing of lockdown by four weeks to July 19.
Music Venue Trust call for more help from the Government
Mark Davyd, founder and chief executive of the Music Venue Trust, called on the Government to provide additional financial support to businesses hit by the delay to the end of lockdown.
He told the PA news agency: “We need the Government to act immediately because millions of pounds have gone into this sector to prevent it from closing down.
“We are apparently going to be four weeks away from when we might be able to reopen. But in those four weeks most of these venues could be closed down because they are unable to pay their bills.”
Indian variant is 'becoming the most dominant' in Hampshire -
The Indian variant of coronavirus is ‘becoming the most dominant’ in Hampshire with Covid cases expected to rise.
Residents have been urged to get vaccinated as health bosses said the vaccine remains ‘the best protection we have’ against the virus.
It comes as it has been confirmed that the variant first identified in India, now known as Delta, is becoming the most dominant in Hampshire.
Anxious wait for announcement on wedding numbers for Hampshire brides and venues
Brides-to-be and wedding venues are waiting with bated breath for an announcement on whether larger gatherings at weddings can go ahead this summer.
Prime minister Boris Johnson is to make an announcement at 6pm today that could see coronavirus rules limiting the amount of guests remain in place for another four weeks.
The move could have disastrous effects on the wedding industry, which has already been hit hard by months of shutdown followed by tight rules.
Industry group The UK Weddings Taskforce said that 50,000 weddings planned in the four weeks after June 21 could be cancelled if the lifting of restrictions is delayed, meaning a £325m per week loss for the industry.
Delay to the end of lockdown will tip some music businesses into ‘final collapse’, warns Frank Turner
Frank Turner has warned that a delay to the end of lockdown will tip some music businesses into ‘final collapse’.
The singer-songwriter, who is a patron of the Music Venue Trust, said the expected announcement of a four-week extension of coronavirus restrictions in England is ‘disheartening’.
In a thread on Twitter, Turner described the impact a delay will have on the live music sector, which has been preparing for a June 21 restart at full capacity.
Strong support for delay of lockdown end, according to a poll
YouGov reports that 71 per cent of English adults say they back a proposed delay to June 21 lockdown end, including 41 per cent who strongly support the delay.
However 24 per cent say they would oppose this decision.
Support comes across all major party voters, Leavers and Remainers, regions and ages - biggest opposition comes from English 18-24 year olds, where 34 per cent oppose; but still 54 per cent support a four week delay.
Speaker of the House criticises government
Speaker of the House Sir Lindsay Hoyle has told MPs he thinks it is “totally unacceptable” that the Government will be holding a press conference this evening on expected changes to the Covid road map timetable before telling the House of Commons.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock is due to answer questions in the chamber at 8.30pm and Sir Lindsay said: “Can I just say, we weren’t going to get a statement until I got involved with Downing Street. The fact is this has been forced to actually get a statement today, it was going to be left to tomorrow which would have been totally unacceptable.
“The fact is – I understand the Prime Minister at the moment is on Nato, there is a big conference going on, he isn’t here – that’s why I insisted that somebody came to make this statement. The timing of it is 8.30pm. I thought that was better than waiting for the Prime Minister to make a statement tomorrow.
“This House needs to know, it needs to know first. I find it totally unacceptable that once again, once again, that we see Downing Street running roughshod over members of Parliament. We’re not accepting it and I’m at the stage where I’m beginning to look for other avenues if they’re not going to treat this house seriously.
“But I will say I think it’s time for me to have a meeting with the Prime Minister to actually put on the record here now but with him that this House matters.”
Reminder of when the press conference starts
You can watch it on all major news channels.
It is due to start at 6pm.
Less than an hour from now.
Latest jab info
Government data up to June 13 shows that of the 71,672,208 jabs given in the UK so far, 41,698,429 were first doses – a rise of 147,228 on the previous day.
Some 29,973,779 were second doses, an increase of 181,121.
Fifth day with more than 100 Covid cases in Hampshire
The Government confirmed there had been a total of 7,742 new cases across the country.
This included 121 in Hampshire, the fifth day in a row over 100 cases.
End of lockdown delayed until July 19
The Prime Minister has announced that the easing of lockdown will not go ahead as planned on June 21.
It has been pushed to July 19, four weeks later.