Great Britain

Coronavirus latest news – 31 Met Police officers FINED £200 after getting illegal lockdown haircuts at police station

THIRTY-one Met Police officers will have to pay £200 fixed penalty notices after getting illegal lockdown haircuts at a police station.

The officers breached strict coronavirus rules on Sunday January 17 by having a professional barber visit Bethnal Green police station.

Two officers involved in the planning of the barber's visit have been identified and are facing a misconduct investigation, the Met Police admitted in a statement issued this afternoon.

The news comes as ministers prepared to announce new plans to force Brits returning from certain countries to isolate in a hotel upon their return.

Travellers returning from Portugal, South America and South Africa will now have to remain inside a hotel rooms for 10 days once they get back - all at their own expense at an estimated cost of £1,500 per person.

Follow the live blog below for the very latest news, updates and analysis of the coronavirus crisis...

  • UK HEALTH SECRETARY MATT HANCOCK HITS OUT AT EU COVID VACCINE THREAT

    It comes as the bloc threatened to impose controls on the export of coronavirus vaccines.

    Hancock said: “Protectionism is not the right approach in a pandemic.”

    He also said he had spoken to manufacturers Astrazeneca and Pfizer and added: “I’m confident of the supply of vaccines into the UK.”

  • DUTCH JUSTICE MINISTER VOWS RIOTERS WILL BE PROSECUTED

    People arrested during three nights of rioting sparked by the Netherlands' new coronavirus curfew will face swift prosecution, the Dutch justice minister said Tuesday as the nation faced its worst civil unrest in years.

    Minister Ferd Grapperhaus said rioters would be quickly brought before the courts by public prosecutors and will face possible prison terms if convicted.

    They won't get away with it, he told reporters in The Hague.

    The rioting, initially triggered by anger over the country's tough coronavirus lockdown, has been increasingly fueled by calls for rioting swirling on social media.

  • OLYMPICS-MO FARAH CONFIDENT TOKYO GAMES WILL GO AHEAD

    Britain's multiple world and Olympic long distance champion Mo Farah has said the more people who get vaccinated against COVID-19, the greater the chance that the Tokyo Olympics will go ahead on schedule.

    Farah, who won gold at the 5,000 metres and 10,000 metres at the 2012 and 2016 Olympics, added that he expected the July-August Games, postponed from last year, to take place.

    "I think most people in a career want to go to an Olympics and take part in an Olympics. The key thing is to stay safe and see what the country can do," Farah told talkSport radio.

  • TORY MPS URGE REGIONAL APPROACH TO SOLVE 'NATIONAL SCHOOLS EMERGENCY'

    Schools should be reopened after the February half-term break in areas where Covid-19 infection rates are low, Conservative MPs have urged.

    The Government was also told to treat the closures as a "national emergency" given the mental health "timebomb" being created by the pandemic, with children, parents and school staff all struggling.

    Education minister Nick Gibb said the Government will be "led by the science" when making decisions about "moving away from the lockdown conditions".

    It is expected parents will receive two weeks' notice ahead of any reopening, Mr Gibb added.

  • PM BORIS JOHNSON TO ADDRESS NATION

    Prime Minister Boris Johnson will address the nation at 5pm today, speaking about the coronavirus crisis.

    The Downing Street press conference will see the PM talk, along with Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty and NHS chief Simon Stevens.

    It was likely that daily deaths on Tuesday would take the UK's Covid-10 death toll up and over 100,000.

    It would take 1,469 further deaths to reach the grim milestone.

  • WHO WILL GET THE OXFORD ASTRAZENECA COVID VACCINE FIRST?

    Brian Pinker, 82, became the first patient to receive the jab at Oxford University Hospital at 7.30am on January 4.

    The Oxford jab is the second vaccine to be rolled out in the UK, after the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine was first given to 91-year-old Margaret Keenan on December 8, 2020.

    Mass vaccination sites across the country have been set up to help get the jabs into the arms of as many Brits as possible.

  • WHERE IS THE OXFORD ASTRAZENECA COVID VACCINE MADE?

    The Oxford-Astrazeneca vaccine is mainly being produced in the UK, though other sites across Europe are being used to manufacture the first doses of the jab.

    Ian McCubbin, manufacturing lead for the UK's Vaccine Taskforce said while the initial supply had come from the Netherlands and Germany after this the supply chain would be completely British-based.

  • EXTRA 74,000 LAPTOPS AND TABLETS DELIVERED TO KIDS

    New figures from the Department for Education (DfE) suggest that 313,592 devices have been sent to councils, academy trusts, schools and colleges across England since the lockdown began on January 4 - which is an additional 74,489 devices compared to the same time last week.

    A total of 876,013 laptops and tablets have been delivered or dispatched to support pupils to access remote education since the start of the scheme.

  • THE NUMBER OF CHILDREN OF KEY WORKERS IN SCHOOLS FALLS 

    New Government data shows about 813,000 children of critical workers in England were in attendance on January 21, down from 820,000 on January 13.

    This represents 71 per cent of all pupils in attendance at school last week.

    But the overall proportion of pupils in class (14 per cent) remains the same as the week before, according to figures from the Department for Education.

    More than a fifth (21 per cent) of primary school pupils were on-site last week, while 5 per cent of secondary school students were in class - the same as on January 13.

    The percentage of pupils with an education, health and care plan (EHCP), or with a social worker, in class has risen slightly on the week before.

  • TORY MP, AGED 40, DEFENDS DECISION TO ACCEPT COVID-19 JAB

    A Conservative MP who volunteered at a local hospital has defended accepting a dose of Covid-19 vaccine, despite being 40 years old.

    Brendan Clarke-Smith, who represents Bassetlaw in north Nottinghamshire, was given the AstraZeneca jab on Friday after having done a shift at Retford Hospital vaccination centre.

    Vaccinations are currently limited to the Government's four priority groups; the over-80s, over-70s, frontline health workers and those people classed as extremely clinically vulnerable.

    Mr Clarke-Smith said the dose he got was "left over" from that day's vaccine stock, preventing it going to waste.

  • ‘POSSIBLE COVID BECOME A MUCH MORE TREATABLE DISEASE’ 

    NHS England's chief executive Sir Simon Stevens told the Health and Social Care Committee: "I think a lot of us in the health service are increasingly hopeful that the second half of the year and beyond we will also see more therapeutics and more treatments for coronavirus."

    He added: "There are a number of others (treatments) in the pipeline and I think it is possible that over the course of the next six to 18 months coronavirus also becomes a much more treatable disease with antivirals and other therapies, which alongside the vaccination programme, holds out the hope of a return to a much more normal future."

  • VACCINATING PENSIONERS WILL MAKE A ‘BIG IMPACT’

    NHS England's chief executive Sir Simon Stevens said: "About a quarter of hospital admissions for Covid are for people aged under 55, and about half of inpatient bed days for coronavirus patients, relates to patients under the age of 65."

    He said deaths were "highly concentrated" in the older age groups, including those aged 70 and above, the clinically extremely vulnerable, and the health and social care staff looking after them.

    Sir Simon added: "Independently that has been estimated to account for 88% of deaths that have occurred so far.

    "But when you look at the use of hospital resources, it's not quite as concentrated at the apex of the pyramid or risk, shall we say."

    He added: "By the time you are vaccinating people, 65, 70, 75, you're beginning to make a big impact on the hospital bed usage, not just the avoidable deaths."

  • NHS BOSS: KNOCK-ON CONSEQUENCES

    NHS England chief executive Sir Simon Stevens described the current scenario with coronavirus as a "very serious position with all sorts of knock-on consequences, not only for patients and families with coronavirus but other services as well".

    He told the Health and Social Care Committee: "Everybody is getting intensive care and ventilators who clinicians think would benefit, but let's not disguise the fact that this is obviously stretching the system in an extreme way.

    "We have got about 3,700 core critical care beds across the NHS in England and as a result of the work that hospitals did to prepare over summer and autumn we've got surge beds and facilities of which we've now got about 2,170 occupied by patients who need critical care."

    He added: "Said another way, more than 50 per cent of critical care beds on top of the core capacity, and that is obviously requiring a flex in staffing levels and staff are working under incredible pressure to deliver those services."

  • DO YOU NEED THE VACCINE IF YOU HAVE HAD THE VIRUS?

    Yep. Reinfection is still possible if you have had it once, and experts do not know how long someone is immune from getting sick again once recovering from Covid. 

    Due to the severe health risks associated with the virus, you should still take the vaccine if offered it.

  • ARE VACCINES ARE MANDATORY?

    A video being circulated on social media claims that because Covid regulations are law there will be "mandatory vaccines, house arrest until people are vaccinated and children forced to be vaccinated".

    This is not true. Parliament did vote on new Covid-19 regulations on January 6 - which introduced a new national lockdown and restricted reasons why people could leave their homes - but it did not make vaccines mandatory.

    Children cannot be forcibly vaccinated without parental consent.

  • JUST UNDER 33,000 COVID-POSITIVE PATIENTS CURRENTLY IN HOSPITALS 

    NHS England chief executive Sir Simon Stevens told the Health and Social Care Committee on today the figure had remained at about that level for the past fortnight and was a "very sharp acceleration" since Christmas, when around 18,000 coronavirus patients were in hospital.

    Sir Simon said: "Although we are beginning to see new admissions beginning to turn down slightly, the beds occupied decreasing slightly in London is being offset by increases in the Midlands.

    "So overall we are about plateaued at about 33,000 Covid-positive inpatients, which is an incredibly high number and very, very serious.

    "When you look at the critical care positions, again, we have got over 4,000 patients in critical care and about three-quarters of our critical care are there for Covid-related reasons."

  • LABOUR: WHY AREN’T TEACHERS ON VACCINE PRIORITY LIST? ASKS LABOUR

    Labour’s schools minister Wes Streeting has called on the government to consider how quickly teachersto get the Covid vaccine.

    He told Sky News: “Teachers don’t want to jump the queue.

     “But I think school staff are really concerned that they don’t seem to feature on the priority list at all.”

  • ONE IN 10 DEATHS REGISTERED LAST WEEK INVOLVED COVID

    Coronavirus accounted for four in 10 deaths registered in England and Wales in the week ending January 15 - the highest proportion recorded during the pandemic, figures show.

    There were 7,245 deaths registered where "novel coronavirus" was mentioned on the death certificate in England and Wales, the Office for National Statistics (ONS said).

    This is a 19.6% rise from the previous week when 6,057 deaths were registered.

    It is also the third-highest weekly number recorded during the pandemic and at 40.2%, the week with the highest proportion of deaths involving Covid-19 recorded so far.

    The number of deaths involving Covid-19 in care homes continued to rise, with 1,271 deaths in care homes registered in the week ending January 15.

  • WHERE WILL THE COVID VACCINE BE GIVEN?

    Yesterday another 33 mass vaccination sites opened their doors.

    The new centres will mean there is a network of 50 jab hubs across England, delivering thousands of doses per day.

    One of the chosen sites is The Black Country Living Museum, made famous as a set for hit TV drama Peaky Blinders.

    The Victorian-era heritage site, which has previously been used as a backdrop for the BBC show, has been described as a “game-changer” for Dudley and the surrounding area.

    Other locations opening their doors to help deliver the Government’s national Covid-19 vaccination rollout from today include a race course, a show ground, a football stadium and a former Ikea store.

  • HOTEL BOSS: WE’RE READY TO HELP WITH QUARANTINE

    Rob Paterson, chief executive of Best Western hotels group, said the hotel industry was ready to assist if the Government did opt for a policy of quarantining international arrivals.

    He told BBC Radio 4's Today programme that, while he had not held conversations with ministers about the proposals, the sector was "familiar and accustomed to managing Covid-positive customers in our hotels".

    Mr Paterson added: "From the hotels' perspective, we would have to treat each of these customers as Covid-positive, so we would have to have strong infection control and protocols around security in the hotel to ensure we can deliver safely."

  • MORE THAN 7,000 COVID DEATHS LAST WEEK

    A total of 7,245 deaths registered in England and Wales in the week ending January 15 mentioned Covid-19 on the death certificate, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

    This is up from 6,057 deaths in the week to January 8 and is the highest weekly figure since the week ending April 24.

    More than a third (40.2%) of all deaths registered in England and Wales in the week to January 15 mentioned Covid-19 on the death certificate - the highest proportion recorded since the pandemic began.

Football news:

Cavani has returned to training and is likely to play against Crystal Palace
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Neymar: I posted how I was recovering from my injury, and I didn't get any messages saying, Wow, what a professional. No
Ole Gunnar Solscher: The work of the judges is very difficult and without additional pressure. We have to make their decisions
Joan Laporta: I'm sure Messi won't stay at Barca if I don't win the election. He gives the club 30% of revenue
Trent had idolized Gerrard since he was a kid, and he was in a fairy tale: he got Steven's care and the captain's armband. The story of a great relationship
Hazard's recovery from the injury is delayed. He probably won't play against Atletico on March 7