Coronavirus UK news 12pm – 'No evidence' Rule of Six will work as Brits urged to ‘snitch on neighbours' – COVID LIVE

THERE is no evidence the new "catastrophic" rule of six will work, experts have warned.

Professor Carl Heneghan, the leading scientist and director of the Centre for Evidence-Based medicine at Oxford University, has said Boris Johnson acted with haste in introducing the new rule in England and said there is no evidence to support it.

He said: "The rule of six policy should be binned."

It comes as people have been urged to report their neighbours if they are concerned they are breaking the new law.

Kit Malthouse, the policing minister, told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "It is open to neighbours to do exactly that through the non-emergency number, and if they are concerned and they do see that kind of thing, then absolutely they should think about it."

The new measures are being introduced across England to lower the number of people meeting in groups indoors and out.

Follow our coronavirus blog for the latest news and updates…

  • LONDON CITY AIRPORT TO CUT 239 JOBS DUE TO CORONAVIRUS

    London City Airport has announced plans to cut up to 239 jobs following the coronavirus pandemic.

    The city-based airport said the move comes as part of “crucial restructuring plans” to reduce its costs.

    The move could affect 35% of people employed full-time by London City, although part-time staff may also be impacted by today's announcement.

    A spokesperson confirmed to The Sun that the proposed restructure will be across its entire workforce, from director grade to junior staff.

    You can read the full story here

  • SIR KEIR STARMER SELF-ISOLATING

    Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer is self-isolating after a member of his household showed possible coronavirus symptoms.

    A spokesman for Sir Keir said: “This morning Keir Starmer was advised to self isolate after a member of his household showed possible symptoms of the coronavirus.

    “The member of his household has now had a test. In line with NHS guidelines, Keir will self-isolate while awaiting the results of the test and further advice from medical professionals.”

    Sir Keir took part in a phone-in on LBC radio this morning and his office has alerted the broadcaster about the situation.

  • NEW FACILITY FOR UP TO 400 PATIENTS PLANNED NEXT TO WALES' LARGEST HOSPITAL

    A new 400-bed facility will be built next to Wales' largest hospital to manage any increase in Covid-19 cases this winter.

    The building, next to the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff, will follow the decommissioning of the Dragon's Heart Hospital at the Principality Stadium.

    Health minister Vaughan Gething announced £33 million of funding for the new Cardiff and Vale University Health Board inpatient facility on Monday.

    “This investment will help Cardiff and Vale University Health Board manage any potential increase in admissions caused by Covid-19 in what is likely to be a challenging winter for health and social care services,” Mr Gething said.

    “We know the winter can present greater difficulty for NHS staff, and with the virus more likely to spread in colder conditions we need to ensure we have the bed capacity to cope with increased demand.”

  • IT IS ILLEGAL TO 'MINGLE' UNDER 'RULE OF SIX' LAW IN ENGLAND
    The Government has made it illegal to “mingle” under the new law enabling the enforcement of the “rule of six” in England.

    Changes to regulations in England were published late on Sunday night, around 30 minutes before they came into force.

    People face fines of £100, doubling to a maximum of £3,200 for repeat offences, for breaching the law, which bans social gatherings of more than six people both indoors and outdoors.

    The restrictions state more than six people can gather from the same household or two “linked households” – made up of a household of one adult and any number of children and a second with no limit on the numbers of adults or children.

    Rules allow for more than six people in total in indoor settings “operated by a business, a charitable, benevolent or philanthropic institution or a public body”, or at outdoor events organised by “a business, a charitable, benevolent or philanthropic institution, a public body, or a political body”.

    But those attending must be part of a “qualifying group” of up to six people, a single household or linked households.

    And no person is allowed to become a member of another group or “otherwise mingle” with anyone outside their own group, according to the legislation.

  • SCHOOLS REOPEN IN ITALY

    Schools in some regions of Italy are reopening today after six months of closure due to the coronavirus pandemic.

    Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte addressed the nation in a brief televised message, saying: “Italian schools suffer from long-time structural weaknesses, which have been aggravated by the pandemic.

    “There will be difficulties and hardship, especially in the beginning,” Conte said, praising students, families and teachers for their “extraordinary” efforts since the March closure, while pledging to be on their side in the coming months.

    Other regions will wait for two more weeks before reopening schools.

    Pictured: Students have their temperature checked as they arrive for the first day of school at Gioberti high school in Turin

  • SWEDEN DROPS TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS TO BRITAIN

    Sweden has taken Britain off its red-list of countries it advises citizens not to travel to, despite a pick-up in new coronavirus cases and restrictions on public gatherings.

    Swedes can now travel freely to most European destinations, though Finland, Ireland, the Baltic countries and Malta remain on the red-list.

    Britain recorded its highest daily rate of new infections since mid-May last week and gatherings of more than six people were banned across most of the country from today.

    Pictured: Passengers arrive at Heathrow Airport in London

  • VACCINE DEAL

    A company with a base in Scotland has signed a deal with the UK Government to produce up to 190 million doses of a Covid-19 vaccine.

    French-owned Valneva SE will produce 60 million doses of the drug VLA2001 in 2021 – if the vaccine development is successful.

    Ministers have also agreed to invest in Valneva's manufacturing plant in Livingston, West Lothian, to help scale up production.

    Thomas Lingelbach, Valneva CEO, described the deal “transformational.”

    Mr Lingelbach said: “We made the early decision to choose a proven and well-established inactivated vaccine approach which is further validated by this partnership.”

  • NATIONAL 'CURFEW' COULD BE INTRODUCED IF PEOPLE BREAK RULE OF SIX

    A national curfew is the “obvious” next step if Brits ignore the government’s ‘rule of six’ coronavirus rules.

    The country could be set for another lockdown if people flout the social distancing laws amid fears a spike in infections could spiral.

    Pubs and restaurants are already closing early in areas like Bolton where there are local lockdowns or restrictions but similar drastic measures could be rolled out nationwide.

    The proposal, likely to be enforced over concerns people ignore social distancing after having a drink, would impact younger Brits the most – after they were blamed for the recent spike.

    A government source told The Telegraph: “A national curfew is the obvious next step if the numbers keep rising despite all the steps we are currently taking.”

    Read the full story here

  • FORMER ITALIAN PM BERLUSCONI TO LEAVE HOSPITAL ON MONDAY

    Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi will leave the Milan hospital where he was being treated after contracting the coronavirus two weeks ago, officials in his Forza Italia party said on Monday.

    “The president will be discharged today at around midday,” the officials said in a message sent to journalists.

    The 83 year-old was admitted to Milan's San Raffaele hospital on September 4, suffering from mild pneumonia symptoms in both lungs after contracting COVID while on holiday in Sardinia.

  • REPORT NEIGHBOURS OVER CONCERNS ABOUT RULE OF SIX

    Kit Malthouse, the policing minister, said people can report their neighbours if they fear they are breaking the rule of six.

    He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “We are in discussions about what reporting mechanisms there might be but there is obviously the non-emergency number that people can ring and report issues they wish to.

    “Certainly during the initial stage of lockdown, we did see a surge in those reports coming through to the police.
    “If people are concerned, if they do think there is contravention then that option is open to them.”

  • MASS REDUNDANCIES FEARS

    A trade union boss has warned that the end of the job retention scheme could trigger mass redundancies.

    Speaking on BBC Breakfast, TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady said: “Unemployment isn't just miserable for families, it will hold back the economy, just at the time when if we are facing further spikes and lockdowns we need more support.

    “We've put forward proposals to the Government for a job retention and upskilling scheme and I'm really appealing to the Chancellor to stand by working families and keep people at work.”

    She described the furlough scheme as a success, stating it is “too soon to pull the plug”.

    “The problem is if the Government doesn't act now we could be facing mass unemployment and we know how much harm that does to the economy and how much more expensive it is in the long run,” she added.

  • BIG INCREASE IN PEOPLE USING FOOD BANKS BECAUSE OF VIRUS CRISIS

    The number of people using food banks for the first time has increased because of the virus crisis, new research reveals.

    The Trussell Trust said its study suggested that families with children are being hit the hardest during the pandemic.

    An analysis carried out by Heriot-Watt University with support from the National Institute of Economic and Social Research, estimated there is likely to be a 61% rise in need at the Trust's network of more than 1,000 food banks this winter.

    The charity warned that with mass unemployment being predicted there will be further rises in poverty with 670,000 additional people classed as destitute by the end of 2020, meaning they cannot afford essentials like housing, energy and food.

    Well before Covid-19 hit the UK, food banks in the Trussell Trust network had been seeing year-on-year increases in levels of need, with 1.9 million emergency food parcels given out in 2019/20.

  • CLOTHES AND DRINKS AMONG MOST POPULAR LOCKDOWN PURCHASES

    Clothes and drinks are among the most popular items Britons ordered online during lockdown, new research suggests.

    More than six in 10 (64%) of UK adults have received deliveries to update their wardrobe since March 23 – and 43% have bought soft drinks, wine or beer, according to figures from Royal Mail.

    Skincare and make-up were also popular purchases, with 26% and 18% of buyers investing in them respectively.

    Meanwhile, one in 10 of the 2,000 people surveyed bought Lego, as schools stayed closed for as long as six months.

  • ASTRAZENECA SHARES RISE AS UK CORONAVIRUS VACCINE TRIAL RESUMES

    Shares of AstraZeneca rose 1% to 8,516 pence after the British drugmaker received the go-ahead from safety watchdogs over the weekend to resume clinical trials for its COVID-19 vaccine candidate in the UK.

    The late-stage trials of the vaccine were suspended last week after an illness in a study participant, casting doubts on an early rollout and sending the London-listed company's shares lower.

    Global trials of the vaccine had also been paused following the UK suspension.

    Brazil has approved restarting the trials and the Serum Institute of India is awaiting permission from the Drugs Controller General of India.

  • CASES RISE

    The Czech Republic recorded 792 new cases of coronavirus on Sunday.

    This is a drop after five consecutive days with more than 1,000 cases each, Health Ministry's data showed today.

    The overall number of confirmed cases rose to 36,188 in the country of 10.7 million.

    The country's seven-day case rate per 100,000 people is 71.8.

    It was taken off the UK's 'safe list' on August 27 after it soared past the UK's threshold figure of 20.

  • CRIMINAL RECORD

    Priti Patel urged people to respect the regulations or risk fines of between £100 and £3,200 as marshals start to patrol streets.

    Anyone meeting in a group of more than six indoors or out are now breaking the law.

    Home Office officials say those who refuse to accept £100 on-the-spot fines will be arrested and taken to court.

    A source said: “Those who repeatedly break the rules need to know they could face a criminal record.”

    Pubs, bars and restaurants must also take the details of punters or risk £1,000 fines.

    Writing in The Sun, Ms Patel, the Home Secretary, said: “These new rules are easier to understand and easier for the police to enforce.

    “I know that, as part of our national effort, the law-abiding majority will stick to these new rules. But there will be a small minority who do not, and the police have the necessary powers to take action against them.

    “This disease is deadly and that is why it is right that the police enforce where people break the rules.”

  • RULE OF SIX: EXPLAINED

    Currently, people aren't allowed to gather in groups of more than 30, and they can only meet inside with one other household.

    The new “rule of six” – which comes into force from Monday, September 14 – replaces these existing measures.

    The ban on gatherings of more than six people indoors and outdoors applies at home and in public.

    There are no plans to close pubs and restaurants again though so you will still be able to tuck into a meal out.

    But establishments will be expected to restrict the number of people sat around the same table to the six-person cap.

    If you want to go to the pub with more than six pals, it's expected the group will be split and treated separately.

  • RULE OF SIX IS NECESSARY

    A professor has expressed how important it is we all stick to new coronavirus rules.

    Peter Openshaw of Imperial College said : “The rule of six… it is going to cause pain and suffering for us to all go back to some degree of lockdown.

    “But if we don’t do this now we are going to be right back in hard lockdown in short order.”

  • NEW £100 FINES FOR COVID RULEBREAKERS

    New £100 fines have been announced if Brits meet in groups of more than six indoors or out, doubling for each repeat offence up to £3,200.

    Marshals will also be brought in to enforce social distancing in city centres.

    The “toughening up” of the rules is a bid to stop the virus' spread.

  • COULD A SECOND LOCKDOWN BE ON THE CARDS?

    Experts have warned Brits could face a second lockdown if cases snowball.

    Peter Openshaw of Imperial College said a “hard lockdown” will be next if Brits fail to comply with new rules.

    He added he fears the “trickle” of cases will turn to a “cascade”.

  • COPS ‘SHUT DOWN PARTIES AHEAD OF NEW RULES

    Cops across the country have been out in force to put a stop to illegal raves and house parties over the weekend.

    It comes as rule-bending Brits attempt to cram in big nights out before groups are slashed to just six people.

    But lockdown-flouters seem to be forgetting that measures are still in place which limit the number of people you should be socialising with, and how far apart you should be.

  • BORIS AND CARRIE HELD SECRET COVID-SECURE CHRISTENING FOR BABY WILFRED

    The Prime Minister and fiance Carrie Symonds held a top secret Covid-secure christening for their baby son Wilfred.

    The youngster was baptised in front of a small audience of select family members at a top secret venue on Saturday, The Sun can exclusively reveal.

    However, there was no reception afterwards to comply with coronavirus safety measures.

  • ISRAEL BECOMES FIRST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD TO IMPOSE SECOND LOCKDOWN

    Israel will become the first country in the world to impose a new national lockdown.

    The measures will come into effect Friday and last for three weeks.

    It comes after 4,000 new infections in the region.

  • PALS TRAVEL TO ENJOY FUN IN THE SUN BEFORE NEW COVID RULES

    Groups of pals flocked to beaches and parks today for the last day they could hang out in large groups.

    It comes as the new rule of six is set to come into force, as the two hottest days of the month are also set to kick off. ]One group of 15 pals travelled from Croydon to Brighton for the day to enjoy one last blast of summer.

    Alan Dean, 32, said: “This might be the last time we can do this so we’re making the most of it while we can.”

  • ‘EVERYONE IS FLOUTING THE RULES’

    A disgruntled Brit has claimed “everyone is flouting the rules” ahead of the new rule of six that will come into force tomorrow.

    Alan Dean, 32, said: “This might be the last time we can do this so we’re making the most of it while we can.

    “Frankly everyone is flouting the rules, even people like Dominic Cummings, so I don’t see how the government can preach to us.”

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