Coronavirus may have been spreading across the UK since last year, it has been claimed.

Experts have admitted that the killer bug may have been imported from the beginning of December .

Recordings from a meeting on January 6 has emerged that shows the World Health Organisation was struggling to obtain information from China during the crucial early days of the pandemic.

WHO officials said China was withholding vital information needed to evaluate the risk of the virus to the rest of the world, Sun Online reports.

On January 20 China finally admitted the virus was contagious and 10 days later WHO declared Covid-19 as a global emergency.

Coronavirus may have entered the UK last December

If China was hiding the true date of the first infection, experts believe the virus may have entered the UK in December.

Public Health England previously said it couldn't dismiss the theory that coronavirus was in the UK "in December or early January".

Data gathered through the Covid-19 symptom-tracking app developed at King’s College London also indicates that people in the UK were contracting coronavirus from the start of January.

Epidemiologist professor Tim Spector said: "The reports I am getting are from people who were ill from early January onwards and strongly suggest they had Covid-19 but were not recognised as such."

Experts believe the virus may have entered the UK in December

The first confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK were recorded on January 31 when two Chinese nationals staying in a hotel in York tested positive.

Steve Walsh was the first Brit to test positive on February 6.

The businessman had attended a sales conference in Singapore in January.

Recently it was revealed a man treated for suspected pneumonia in a hospital near Paris on December 27 had tested positive for the deadly bug.

Andy Gill died on February 1 after returning from a tour in Asia

This has raised the possibility that coronavirus was imported into Europe sooner than previously believed.

Dr Stephen Baker, from Cambridge University's Infectious Diseases Institute, told the Guardian: "Let's say it was kicking off fairly substantially in Wuhan and people weren't being informed: could there have been people travelling to and from China at that point who may have been infected by coronavirus?

"That is completely possible. Is it then possible that they transmitted the virus to other people when they were in the UK? Yes, of course that's possible."

Catherine Mayer fears her late husband, Gang of Four guitarist Andy Gill, may have been killed by the virus after he returned home from touring in Asia in November.

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The 64-year-old, who had been receiving treatment for the inflammatory condition sarcoidosis since 2012, fell ill in January and died of pneumonia on February 1.

Andy's 26-year-old tour manager also fell ill and was taken to hospital in Leeds with a severe lung infection.

Catherine told the Guardian: "Nobody at that point thought coronavirus had reached Europe."

She has allowed medics to test her husband's samples for antibodies as it may provide answers.