Surge testing is being rolled out in targeted areas in Lambeth and Cumbria, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) said.
The testing will begin in Lambeth on Saturday in Clapham, Brixton, Stockwell, West Norwood and Vauxhall following a rise in confirmed cases of the Delta variant.
Lambeth has recorded 695 cases in the last 14 days, a 31 per cent increase compared to previous week, and residents are being strongly encouraged to take a PCR test, even if they do not have symptoms.
So far, all the confirmed cases have been instructed to self-isolate and their contacts have been identified, the DHSC said.
People take part in Covid surge testing on Clapham Common, London, last month. Surge testing is being rolled out in targeted areas in Lambeth and Cumbria, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) said today
The testing will begin in Lambeth on Saturday in Clapham, Brixton, Stockwell, West Norwood and Vauxhall following a rise in confirmed cases of the Delta variant
Surge testing will also be rolled out in Cumbria where everyone aged 12 to 30 who lives, works, or studies in the area is strongly encouraged to take a PCR test. Students will be offered testing at school.
The DHSC said people in these areas should continue to make use of free twice-weekly lateral flow tests alongside the PCR test as part of surge testing.
It also encouraged adults over 18 to come forward for a vaccine if they have not already booked one.
Giant jab clinics are taking place in sports stadiums across the capital this weekend, with adults invited to make vaccine appointments at the Olympic Stadium, Tottenham Hotspur FC, and Chelsea FC.
It comes a week after the June 21 Freedom Day was delayed until July 19 in 'one last heave' of restrictions following a sharp rise in cases of the Delta variant.
The decision was intended to allow time to push forward with the vaccination programme. The UK will still see some easing of lockdown restrictions on June 21.
It is not yet clear what restrictions will be eased, but reports suggest the government will scrap limits on the number of guests at weddings and allow more large events.
The Prime Minister said the data ‘continues to indicate’ that his July 19 terminus date, when all legal limits on social contact are set to be scrapped, will go ahead.
People take Covid tests at a mobile coronavirus surge testing centre in Brockwell Park in south London in April. The Department of Health and Social Care has said surge testing will be rolled out in Lambeth and Cumbria from today
But Tory backbenchers demanded that the Prime Minister speed up the lifting of restrictions after the Mail revealed yesterday that lockdown could end a fortnight early if the coronavirus data continues to improve.
A two-week ‘review point’ demanded by Mr Johnson will now be a ‘genuine review of the data’ which could lead to Freedom Day being brought forward to July 5.
It came as official analysis showed yesterday that as the pandemic receded, the death rate in England was 750 for every 100,000 people – the lowest since figures were first calculated 20 years ago.
Boris Johnson said the data ‘continues to indicate’ that his July 19 terminus date, when all legal limits on social contact are set to be scrapped, will go ahead.
The study by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said the overall number of deaths in England and Wales were both more than 10 per cent below the average for the month over the five years before the virus struck.
It was the second month in a row in which deaths were below average levels in England.
The low mortality rates, in a month when UK infections from the virus almost trebled and fears over a third wave began, is a fresh sign of the success of mass vaccinations.
The ONS report said the chance of dying with Covid-19 in England fell for the fourth consecutive month, with the mortality rate in May just 7.1 for every 100,000 people.
In England there were a total of 35,401 deaths registered last month, 4,252 deaths – or 10.7 per cent – below the average for the month between 2015 to 2019.
In 333 cases the virus was recorded as the main cause. In Wales in May there were 2,416 deaths registered – some 271 deaths or 10.1 per cent below the average for the month. Doctors identified the virus as the main cause in 15 cases.
The breakdown also showed that Covid was only the 24th most common cause of death in May in England. The most common killer in England was heart disease (3,780 deaths), which was ahead of Alzheimer’s and dementia (3,711).
Flu and pneumonia accounted for 1,012 deaths. Prostate cancer, the tenth most common cause of death in England, killed 713.
At the peak of the second wave in January this year there were 32,872 Covid-linked deaths in the UK – 28,820 in England.
MailOnline analysis has revealed uptake around the country varies massively, with seven areas having vaccinated less than 30 per cent of eligible adults
Second doses followed a similar pattern, with the lowest numbers seen in student areas across England. In Cathedral and Kelham in Sheffield, just eight per cent of people are fully vaccinated