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National lockdown remains ‘nuclear option’ 

Justice Secretary Robert Buckland told Sky’s Sophy Ridge On Sunday:

“As the Prime Minister said, going to a national lockdown would indeed be a nuclear option.

“I think here in autumn 2020, knowing much more as we do now about the nature of Covid, but still without a vaccine, we have to take a range of measures which, of course, include enhanced testing, localised measures and indeed the rule of six coming in tomorrow.

“I think the British public now know by taking a combination of different measures we can get through this period.”


Young people are ‘enjoying themselves sometimes a bit too much’

Justice Secretary Robert Buckland said there is an issue with young people forgetting the rules when asked if the Government could introduce curfews.

He told Sky’s Sophy Ridge On Sunday: “I think that as you’ve seen we’ve been very prepared to move quickly where necessary and where the evidence points us.

“I think there’s an issue about social occasions and social events and particularly young people getting together and enjoying themselves sometimes a bit too much and forgetting the importance of the rules.

“I think it would be idle of me to speculate as to what measures we might have to bring in as we approach the winter.”


Boris Johnson considering bringing in pub and restaurant curfews

The Prime Minister is considering implementing a 10pm or 11pm curfew on restaurants, bars and pubs it has been reported. 

The Sunday Telegraph said Boris Johnson is thinking about introducing the measure if local lockdowns are unable to bring the spread of the virus under control. 

The move stems from a concern that adherence to social distancing measures diminishes the more people consume alcohol.


France records more than 10,000 new Covid cases in the past 24 hours

France has confirmed 10,561 new Covid-19 cases in the past 24 hours, health authorities said on Saturday.

This is the first time the country has passed the 10,000 mark in a single day prompting concerns about a resurgence of the disease in the region.


Revellers pack streets of central London ahead of new ‘rule of six’ coronavirus restrictions

Party-goers have been making the most of the final weekend before the “rule of six” coronavirus restrictions come into force, with people pictured flocking to London’s West End.


Hordes of drinkers were seen singing and dancing as a busker performed in Leicester Square, while hundreds packed the streets outside Soho’s bars and restaurants.

Pictures show very few paying attention to the government’s social distancing measures.

Read the full story here


Teenager fined £10,000 after hosting more than 50 guests at a house party

A teenager faces a £10,000 fine for hosting a house party with dozens of guests, just days before the “rule of six” coronavirus restriction comes into force.

The 19-year-old man was issued with the hefty fine after he allowed more than 50 people to attend a party at his home in Lenton, on Friday evening, Nottinghamshire Police said.

(Google Maps)

The force said if the party host fails to pay or contests the fine he will appear before a court.

Read more here


Coronavirus testing should be expanded to those without symptoms, says Tony Blair

People without Covid symptoms should be tested, even if the results are not “fully accurate”, Tony Blair has insisted.

The former prime minister said that as the “largest part” of those who contract Covid-19 do not display symptoms of the virus, it was “sensible” for testing to be made more widely available.

Back in June, the ex-Labour leader had called for a mass coronavirus testing regime to be adopted, arguing this could help keep the disease in check.

He has now called on the UK to ensure it is using all its available capacity to test people not displaying symptoms. 


Concerns over rise in Covid care home cases

Concerns about an increase in Covid-19 cases in care homes prompted the Government to send an alert to care providers to highlight the rising rates and to call for action.

The letter, which was sent on Friday, urges care bosses to “take the necessary action to prevent and limit outbreaks”, pointing out that in the last three days there had been an increase in notifications of coronavirus cases in care homes.

At the moment it is the workforce that is most affected, but the letter says that “clearly” there is a risk that the virus will spread to residents and in some cases already has.

The letter, which was written by Stuart Miller, director of adult social care delivery at the Department of Health and Social Care, said:

“You will know already that we are experiencing a rise in confirmed Covid-19 cases, across the UK population.I need to alert you to the first signs this rise is being reflected in care homes too.Over the past three days, Public Health England (PHE) has reported an increase in notifications of Covid-19 cases in care homes. Testing data has also shown an increase in the number of positive results. Currently, the infections are mainly affecting the workforce but clearly there is a risk the virus will spread to care home residents, or to other parts of the care sector.

“Unfortunately, in some care homes with recent outbreaks, this does appear to have occurred, with residents also becoming infected.”


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Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone tests positive for Covid-19

Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone has tested positive for coronavirus, the Spanish club have announced.

The Argentinian is asymptomatic but is now isolating at home.

Atletico are not in action as the new LaLiga season begins this weekend after their late involvement in the Champions League last term.

A statement from the club read: “This Friday new PCR tests were carried out on the whole group and the manager’s has given a positive result.

“Fortunately, our manager is not showing any symptoms and is at his home isolating and fulfilling the required quarantine.”


Tories retain narrow lead over Labour


One of Boris Johnson’s most loyal supporters calling for the end of SAGE


No fears of mass binge drinking in Newcastle

Health officials and pub bosses in the north east of England have predicted there would not be mass binge drinking ahead of the “rule of six” tighter restrictions coming in.

Newcastle upon Tyne’s director of health Eugene Milne said people could be trusted to behave sensibly, and that similar fears about large numbers of people going out ahead of the first lockdown turned out to be ill-founded.

A leading figure in the Pubwatch scheme in the North East said he expected the police to have a tight grip on any licensed premises that allowed too many people in to operate safely.

There were fears that large numbers of young people would go out for a big night, socialising in large groups, before the new restrictions limiting people to gatherings of six or fewer come into force on Monday.

But Mr Milne told Tyne Tees TV News: “At the opening of lockdown there was a real fear that that might happen in the city, and that didn’t happen so I think we can trust people.

“The idea of the rule of six is to make it easier for people to know how to stick with the guidance and I think one of the big problems has been the guidance has progressively got so complicated, so specific to particular areas that it becomes very confusing for everybody.”


Half of Ireland’s coronavirus cases in Dublin

Almost half of Ireland’s new coronavirus cases were in Dublin, the authorities said on Saturday.

The Government would have no hesitation in implementing special restrictions in the city to curb the spread of coronavirus, Taoiseach Micheal Martin has warned.

The Cabinet is due to consider advice from public health experts at NPHET on Tuesday following a series of warnings from the acting chief medical officer about the deteriorating situation in the capital.

Dr Ronan Glynn said: “47% of the cases reported today are in Dublin city and county.

“For the people of Dublin in particular, this is a critical moment to address the spread of the disease in the community.”


Matt Hancock welcomes restart of Oxford vaccine trials

Health Secretary Matt Hancock welcomed the restart of trials of the Covid-19 vaccine being developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University.

He tweeted: “Good news for everyone the Oxford vaccine trials are back up and running. This pause shows we will always put safety first. We will back our scientists to deliver an effective vaccine as soon as safely possible.”


UK sees highest Saturday rise in new coronavirus cases in 4 months

The Government said that as of 9am on Saturday, there had been a further 3,497 lab-confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK. Overall, 365,174 cases have been confirmed.

It comes as people have been warned against having a “party weekend” as a former chief scientific adviser said the UK is “on the edge of losing control” of coronavirus.


The Government dashboard also said a further nine people had died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid-19 as of Saturday. This brings the UK total to 41,623.

Read the full story here


Health Secretary welcomes vaccine trial restart

Matt Hancock welcomed the restart of trials of the Covid-19 vaccine being developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University.

He tweeted: “Good news for everyone the Oxford vaccine trials are back up and running. This pause shows we will always put safety first. We will back our scientists to deliver an effective vaccine as soon as safely possible.


UK Covid cases: 3,497 more infections confirmed

There has been a further 3,497 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK, the Government has said. This takes the overall figure to 365,174.

The Government dashboard also said a further nine people had died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid-19 as of Saturday. This brings the UK total to 41,623.

Separate figures published by the UK’s statistics agencies show there have now been 57,400 deaths registered in the UK where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate.


NHS marches: Workers demand better wages during protests in London and across the UK

Hundreds of frontline NHS staff, many of whom worked throughout the pandemic, have marched through central London and in other locations around the UK to demand better wages.


Campaigners wearing scrubs and other medical-related attire held banners which read “stop clapping, start paying,” “priceless yet penniless” and “640 healthcare workers dead, blood on their hands” alongside images of Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Read the full story here


Oxygen grows scarce in some parts of India as coronavirus cases rise

Oxygen supply has grown scarce in some parts of India hard hit by coronavirus, hospital and local government officials said. 

Medical Director of Mumbai’s Niramaya Hospital, Dr Amit Thadhani, said the shortage in his area was acute.

“The problem is that the filling stations are themselves not getting supply of oxygen from the manufacturers. Supplies are extremely limited,” he said.

“If we ask for 50 cylinders, we may get about 5 to 7.”

It comes as India reported a record jump in cases for a second consecutive day, logging 97,570 new on Saturday.

With total cases of more than 4.65 million, India is the world’s second-worst affected country, trailing only the United States, which has more than 6.4 million cases. Total Covid-19 deaths stood at 77,472, putting India in third place in a ranking of countries’ fatalities. But the growth in infections in India is faster than anywhere else in the world, as cases surge through urban and rural areas.