Total UK Cases: 4,393,307 positive tests
Latest UK daily figure: 2,524 new cases
Number in UK hospital: 1,973 (192 new admissions)
New deaths across UK: 33
Total UK deaths: 127,307
England Cases per 100,000: 25.8 per 100,000
R number in UK: 0.7 to 1.0
Total 1st doses given: 33,032,120 up to and including 19 April 2021
Total 2nd doses given: 10,425,790
Latest Cheshire East data:
Total Cheshire East cases: 20,823
New cases in past 7 days: 67 to 15 April
Total deaths: 797
Cases per 100,000: 17.4 per 100,000
R number in North West: 0.6 to 0.9
Coronavirus cases in the UK: daily updated statistics
The latest number of coronavirus (COVID-19) tests, cases and deaths in the UK. The way deaths are reported is based on a 28-day limit between the date of a positive lab-confirmed test and date of death.
Slides, datasets and transcripts to accompany coronavirus press conferences
Slides, datasets and transcripts from press conferences at 10 Downing Street in response to coronavirus
COVID-19: background information
Information on COVID-19 including epidemiology, virology and clinical features – updated with latest global case numbers.
UK NEWS & HEADLINES:
BBC: Under-35’s bearing brunt of job crisis
Younger people continue to bear the brunt of the jobs crisis amid widespread cuts in sectors such as hospitality, official figures show.
In the year to March, 811,000 payroll jobs were lost in the UK, with under-35s accounting for 80% of these cuts. The data also showed the unemployment rate dipped to 4.9% in the three months to February – down from 5% previously.
This was despite most of the UK being under strict lockdown rules for at least some of the period. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said the jobs market “remains subdued”, with five million people employed but still on furlough.
Prime Minister announces new Antivirals Task Force
Speaking at yesterday evening’s press briefing, Boris Johnson announced that 19 out of 20 of those who’ve had a first dose are coming forward for a second; 1 in 5 of all adults have now had a second dose, including 60 per cent of the 45 to 49 year adults. “There are countries with cases now at record numbers around the world, we cannot delude ourselves that Covid has gone away. The majority of scientific opinion in this country is still firmly of the view that there will be another wave of covid at some stage this year, we must learn to live with this disease, as we live with other diseases; today I want to announce what we hope will be a further line of medical defence – today we are creating a new Antivirals Task Force to search for the most promising new medicines and support their development through clinical trials with the aim of making them safely and rapidly available as early as the Autumn. This means, for example, that if you test positive there might be a tablet you could take at home to stop the virus in its tracks and significantly reduce the chance of infection turning into more severe disease. Or if you’re living with someone who has tested positive, there might be a pill you could take for a few days to stop you getting the disease yourself. And by focussing on these Anti-virals we hope to lengthen the UK’s lead in life sciences and to give ever greater confidence that we can continue on our path towards freedom.
Government launches COVID-19 Antivirals Taskforce to roll out innovative home treatments this autumn
The Antivirals Taskforce will identify treatments for UK patients who have been exposed to COVID-19 to stop the infection spreading and speed up recovery time.
Government scientist warns of summer surge
The UK will likely see a “summer surge” in Covid cases as lockdown is relaxed, a government vaccine adviser says. Prof Adam Finn, of the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation, says modelling points to a rise in cases, as many adults are not immunised. He said the UK was still “vulnerable” and the dates for easing restrictions may need adjusting. The PM has said there is nothing in the data to suggest the next step in easing lockdown cannot go ahead as planned.
But Boris Johnson said that most scientists were “firmly of the view” that there would be a third wave of the disease at some point this year. On Tuesday, for the first time since September UK government figures showed fewer than 2,000 Covid patients in hospital.
Preparing for future pandemics
“At the UN last September, the Prime Minister set out a plan: The Five Point Plan to Prevent Future Pandemics. At its heart is the drive to get better and quicker at developing and deploying what we might need in a future crisis, and especially the life-saving vaccines, therapeutics and diagnostics. But not limited to those things. And as hard as it might be to focus on a future crisis while we’re still facing down COVID-19, the WHO estimates we face a pandemic threat every 5 years. So, we must be better prepared. And we must start that process now.”
Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Matt Hancock gave the virtual opening speech for the Pandemic Preparedness Partnership Conference.
95% mortgage – new government scheme launches
From today buyers will be able to purchase properties worth up to £600,000 with just a five per cent mortgage, under a government guarantee scheme. First time buyers and existing homeowners will be able to take advantage and a growing number of mortgage lenders have come forward to take part – most recently Halifax, which over the weekend revealed it would launch its 95 per cent deals today as well. Zoopla says greater availability of 95 per cent mortgages will have the biggest benefits for buyers in lower value markets in northern England and Scotland.
EY: CEO’s understand transformation cannot be delayed following Covid pandemic
“Technology has been the common denominator for most organization’s resilience amid the pandemic. Interestingly, the traditional and analogue businesses, that were initially struggling at the start of the crisis, have accelerated the adoption of new digital technology and led the spend on tech and data. We are now seeing more of a hybrid business model as CEOs continue seek to plan for any future partial or full lockdowns. As vaccine roll out programs start to bring hope that we may be turning the tide, we are now seeing businesses shift their focus to assess how they can ‘win-in-turn’ and this is driving investment plans over the next 12 months.”
More than two-thirds (68%) of CEO respondents from the world’s largest companies say that they plan to take on a major investment in data and technology over the next 12 months, while 61% plan to undertake a major transformation initiative over the same period, according to the global EY CEO Imperative Study 2021.The survey of 305 CEOs (from the Forbes Global 2000) also found that within three years, 42% of respondents expect to make changes to their organization’s risk management processes.
UK aid and Unilever reach one billion people with global hygiene campaign to tackle Covid-19
A hygiene campaign launched by the Government and Unilever to tackle Covid-19 has now reached one billion people.
Statement on vaccination progress and new variants
Statement by the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care on vaccinations, variants of concern and the appointment of a new chief scientific adviser.
10 million people receive second dose of COVID-19 vaccine
The milestone means almost one in five adults have received both vaccines
BFS OUTLINES £300M PANDEMIC RECOVERY FUND PLANSBibby Financial Services (BFS) has outlined plans for a £300m Pandemic Recovery Fund to support SMEs as lockdown restrictions are lifted over the coming months. Available through the firm’s invoice finance products, the initiative will be targeted at companies who are trading on credit terms with other businesses, supporting supply chains and those looking to access funding to drive growth. UK chief executive Ian Ramsden said: “We know the tremendous impact the Covid-19 pandemic has had on SMEs and supply chains across the UK over the past year.”
Coronavirus Act one-year report: March 2021
One-year report on which powers in the Coronavirus Act 2020 are currently active.
New global partnership launched to fight future pandemics
The Government will launch a new Pandemic Preparedness Partnership (PPP) to save lives from future diseases and prevent another global pandemic.
9 in 10 pharmacies now offering free, rapid coronavirus (COVID-19) tests
Over 90% of community pharmacies in England now offering free, rapid tests for home use.
LOCAL / REGIONAL NEWS & UPDATES:
New campaign launches to encourage residents to support the local high streets
Cheshire East Council is encouraging residents to say ‘hi’ to the high street again with a new campaign backing safe and local shopping.
New Chief Executive for regional transport body
Martin Tugwell will join TfN from its counterpart organisation in the Oxford-to-Cambridge corridor. Outgoing Chief Executive Barry White will step down this month.
Cheshire East Council encourages residents not to drop their guard against Covid-19
Cheshire East Council is encouraging residents not to drop their guard against the ongoing battle against Covid-19
Cheshire East Council urges residents to stay vigilant and get their second Covid-19 vaccination
Almost a million people across Cheshire and Merseyside, who are expecting their second dose of the Covid-19 vaccine, are being encouraged to take up the offer as soon as they are invited.
HMRC: Apply for the SME Brexit Support Fund
If you move goods between the UK and countries in the EU, you need to follow new customs and tax rules. Your business will be affected by the new rules if you:
- buy goods from an EU seller and bring them into the UK
- send goods you’ve sold to a buyer in an EU country haven’t exchanged money but need to move equipment that you use for your business, between the UK and the EU.
- We understand this means a lot of changes are needed, and HMRC is here to help you in several ways.
You can now apply for the SME Brexit Support Fund. Smaller businesses can get up to £2,000 to pay for practical support, including training or professional advice to adjust to new customs, rules of origin and VAT rules when trading with the EU.
Help and support if your business is affected by coronavirus (COVID-19)
Watch videos and register for the free webinars to learn more about the?support available to help you deal with the economic impacts of?coronavirus – a YouTube video about ‘Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) – ‘Claiming the fourth grant if you’re a new parent’ has been added.
Coronavirus (COVID-19): right to work checks
Advice for employers carrying out right to work checks during the coronavirus pandemic – updated as the temporary adjustments introduced because of coronavirus end on 16 May 2021.
HMRC issue briefing: how HMRC will continue to support customers and the economy
This briefing sets out how HMRC will continue to support customers and the economy over the coming months – updated to include information announced since November and links to scheme statistics.
Treasury Direction made under Sections 71 and 76 of the Coronavirus Act 2020
Treasury Direction in relation to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and Job Retention Bonus – uploaded HTML version of: ‘Further Treasury Direction made on 15 April 2021 under Section 76 of the Coronavirus Act 2020’
Download a template if you’re claiming for 100 or more employees through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
Complete a template with the details of the employees you’re claiming for and upload this when you claim (for claims on or after 1 July 2020).
Private providers of coronavirus testing
Lists of and information about approved suppliers of private testing kits for coronavirus (COVID-19).
Confidence returns with surge in contract awards
The construction industry will be breathing a sigh of relief as client confidence returns with a surge in construction contract awards in March. The Glenigan contractors league tables†, which provides a view of the top performing businesses in UK construction, identified that 238 projects worth £6 billion were awarded to the top 50 contractors in March 2021, which is a significant and welcome improvement over the last twelve months’ performance.
Ofsted: coronavirus (COVID-19) rolling update
Ofsted guidance and information relating to coronavirus (COVID-19) for schools, early years, children’s social care and further education and skills providers.
School govenance update
Important news and communications from the Department for Education (DfE) relating to governance in maintained schools and academy trusts in England.
Early years inspection handbook
Ofsted guidance on inspecting registered early years and childcare providers under the education inspection framework
Early years foundation stage (EYFS) statutory framework
The standards that school and childcare providers must meet for the learning, development and care of children from birth to 5.
Coronavirus (COVID-19): initial teacher training (ITT)
Information for providers about managing initial teacher training courses impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) – we have added a section on funded course extensions for 2020 to 2021 trainees and information on how trainees should be recommended for early years teacher status. We have updated information on the immigration permission for trainees from the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland and using the get school experience service. We have also removed the section on funded course extensions for 2019 to 2020 trainees and content relating to ITT 2020 recruitment.
Funding: ITT coronavirus (COVID-19) course extensions
Guidance about funding extensions to initial teacher training (ITT) courses during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak – added ‘Coronavirus (COVID-19) ITT course extensions funding manual: academic year 2020/21 ‘ and ‘ITT course extensions trainee information template 2020/21’.
EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT:
Event Research Programme – ministerial directions
Ministerial directions in relation to the Event Research Programme pilot events.
Information about the Events Research Programme (ERP), paving the way for larger audiences to attend sport, theatre and gigs safely this summer
Information for attendees and those hosting the ERP Pilot Events – outdoor gig at Sefton Park, Liverpool added to the list of ERP events.
HEALTH & WELLBEING:
NHS Test and Trace public advisory group: taking part
Find out about the role of the Public Advisory Group and how members of the public are selected to take part.
COVID-19: impacts on health – reports and tools
National reports and tool to support the monitoring of the direct and indirect impacts of COVID-19 on the population.
Deaths registered weekly in England and Wales, provisional: week ending 9 April 2021
Provisional counts of the number of deaths registered in England and Wales, in the latest weeks for which data are available.
COVID-19: impact on vaccination programmes
Reports assessing the impact of COVID-19-related physical distancing measures on delivery of childhood vaccination programmes in England.
Medical devices given exceptional use authorisations during the COVID-19 pandemic
List of manufacturers and their medical devices which have been granted an exemption by the MHRA. The list also includes manufacturers whose exemption expired or was cancelled. This information will be listed for 2 months after expiry or cancellation.
HMCTS weekly operational summary on courts and tribunals during coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak
This page provides a weekly summary of the HM Courts and Tribunals Service operational position during the coronavirus pandemic.
Businesses shun litigation during pandemic but expected to rise in 2021
Businesses have avoided using litigation to resolve commercial disputes during the COVID-19 pandemic, instead turning to negotiation and mediation, although that is likely to change this year, according to new research published today by EY. The research suggests that UK companies have heeded official guidance, released by the Cabinet Office in May 2020, which called on corporates to steer clear of litigation throughout the pandemic. Almost two-thirds (63%) of the more than 100 FTSE350 and private companies surveyed by YouGov for EY said they had adopted a more conciliatory approach to business disputes since the pandemic began.
Coronavirus (COVID-19): Organised events guidance for local authorities
This guidance sets out advice for local authorities in England around organised events during coronavirus.
End of furlough “won’t kill off the housing market bull run”
A leading analyst has told Knight Frank that the end of furlough this autumn is unlikely to kill off the housing market bull run. Savvas Savouri, chief economist at Toscafund, says: “This is not like previous recessions when whole communities were affected by the closure of a steel mill or a coal mine. “It’s also completely different from the global financial crisis when the collapse of banks and building societies had a localised impact. Every town and city has hospitality and retail venues and so no particular region will be left behind as the country emerges from this recession.”
Agents warned about cash crisis amongst renters under 40
Flatshare website SpareRoom says over a fifth of 18 to 24 years olds have moved back in with their parents to save cash during the pandemic – and one in nine people aged 25 to 40 have done the same thing. Its research reveals more than 27 per cent of people aged 18 to 40 have been forced to borrow money as a direct result of Covid-19 and for almost two thirds of these it’s the first time as adults that they have ever had to do this. On average, they borrowed £1,479.57 with a younger subset – the so-called Millennials – borrowing an average £1,836.05.
Coronavirus (COVID-19): landlord right to rent checks
Advice for landlords carrying out right to rent checks during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic – updated as the temporary adjustments introduced because of coronavirus end on 16 May 2021.
BBC: Primark shopper numbers back to pre-Covid levels
Primark has said the number of people visiting its stores in England and Wales last week after lockdown eased reached pre-pandemic levels.
The chain said the stores “delivered record sales” in the first week since reopening after more than three months.
Unlike most High Street retailers, Primark has no online operations.
As a result, the business has been hit hard by Covid restrictions and estimates it lost £1.1bn in sales while stores were closed.
However, it said more than half of its stores broke their own sales records
Traffic management measures in Kent cease as trade returns to normal
Hauliers no longer need a Kent Access Permit to travel between the UK and the EU.
International road haulage: HGV driver documents
Check which documents you need to carry if you’re the driver or a passenger in a lorry or other heavy goods vehicle (HGV) that crosses international borders.
Haulier advice site locations
Find sites where HGV and coach drivers can get free COVID-19 tests and check their documents to transport goods to the EU.
DVLA Coronavirus (COVID-19) update
Our online services have not been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and are running as normal – updated information on applying for and renewing your lorry and bus licence with a D4 medical form
Providers of day 2 and day 8 coronavirus testing for international arrivals
Information on the 2 tests you must book, pay for and take during your mandatory 10-day quarantine period after arriving in England, including how to book.
Moneysupermarket reports 20 per cent revenue drop as travel interest remains “negligible”A British price comparison website has reported that its revenues dropped by 20 per cent in the first quarter of the year. Moneysupermarket Group, which specialises in comparisons of energy, financial services and insurance providers, saw revenues in the first three months of 2021 drop to £85.5m, down by 20 per cent from 2020’s £107.3m. The company said that contributions from its travel-focused arm, TravelSupermarket, remained “negligible”, while revenue within its financial division dropped by 26 per cent.
Coronavirus (COVID-19): red list travel ban countries
Countries from which entry to the UK is banned – ‘red list’ countries.
India will be added to the red list of countries 4am, Friday 23 April.
Coronavirus Roadmap out of lockdown – what and when?
From 29 March:
- People will be allowed to meet outside, either with one other household or within the “rule of six”, including in private gardens
- The stay at home rule will end, but the government will urge people to stay local as much as possible
- Outdoor sport facilities will reopen, including golf courses and tennis and basketball courts, and formally organised outdoor sports can restart
- Weddings attended by up to six people can take place in any circumstances
Stage two (no earlier than 12 April):
- All shops allowed to open, along with close-contact services, including hairdressers and beauty salons (including in people’s homes)
- Restaurants and pubs allowed to serve food and alcohol to customers sitting outdoors Gyms and spas can reopen, as can zoos, theme parks, libraries and community centres
- Members of the same household can take a holiday in the UK in self-contained accommodation
- Weddings attended by up to 15 people can take place
Stage three (no earlier than 17 May):
- People can meet in groups of up to 30 outdoors
- Six people or two households can meet indoors
- Pubs, restaurants and other hospitality venues can seat customers indoors
- Up to 30 people can attend weddings or other life events, like christenings
- Remaining outdoor entertainment, such as outdoor theatres and cinemas can open
- Indoor entertainment such as museums, theatres, cinemas and children’s play areas can open
- Performances and large events can restart, but with limits on audience numbers
- Hotels, hostels and B&Bs can reopen
- International leisure travel may resume
- Adult indoor group sports and exercise classes can restart
Stage four (no earlier than 21 June):
- All legal limits on social contact will be removed
- No legal limits on the number of people who can attend weddings, funerals and other life events
- Nightclubs will be allowed to reopen
Publishing information about your claimsIn January HMRC published the list of employers who claimed under the CJRS for periods from December onwards, on GOV.UK.
Repayment period for Bounce Back Loans extended to ten yearsBusinesses that took out government Bounce Back loans to help them through the Coronavirus crisis now have more time to repay. Companies will be contacted with options to extend the length of the loan from six to 10 years as part of a new ‘pay-as-you-grow’ initiative. The new proposals give businesses three new options:
1. Extending the length of the loan from six years to 10;
2. Making interest-only payments for six months, then repaying the principal on a phased basis with other interest-only periods;
3. Delaying repayments entirely for up to six months.
COVID-19 Winter Plan
The government’s plan for managing COVID-19 through the end of 2020 and into the start of 2021.
Government extends JRS furlough scheme at 80% for period of lockdown
The government has said the furlough scheme, due to have closed on 31st October, would now be extended until December.
New National Restrictions from 5 November
Information on the new national restrictions, including what they mean for working from home and business closures, why they are being introduced and the financial support available.
Job Retention Bonus (JRB)
Employers are able to claim a one-off payment of £1,000 for every eligible employee furloughed and claimed for through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), kept continuously employed until at least 31 January 2021 and who meets the other eligibility criteria. Claims can be made between 15 February and 31 March.
Become a Green Homes Grant Supplier II – Trustmark and PAS 2030The new Green Homes Grant will give over 600,000 homeowners in England up to £10,000 to install insulation, heat pumps, draft proofing and more to help households cut energy bills.
Check if you’re eligible for the coronavirus Local Restrictions Support Grant
The Local Restrictions Support Grant (LRSG) supports businesses that have been required to close due to temporary COVID-19 local lockdown restrictions imposed by the government.
Self-Employment Income Support Scheme grant extension
The grant is being extended from 1 November 2020. Find out if you’re eligible and how much you can get.
Hospitality venues in England are now legally required to enforce the rule of 6 or face a fine of up to £4,000.
Designated businesses and organisations, including hospitality, close contact services and leisure venues, will also be legally required to log details of customers, visitors and staff for NHS Test and Trace and required to display official NHS QR code posters under law
NHS Test and Trace service in the workplace
Guidance on the NHS Test and Trace service for employers, businesses and workers updated to reflect the new legal requirements for designated venues to collect contact details and display official NHS QR code posters from 24th September
Claim money back through the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme
Find out how to claim the reimbursement for discounts given to diners with the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme. The Eat Out to Help Out Scheme closed on 31 August 2020 – the page updated with removal of registration links.
The Kickstart Scheme provides funding to employers to create job placements for 16 to 24 year olds.
Kickstart Scheme employer resources
If you’ve been offered Kickstart Scheme funding, you can use these resources to show your support for the scheme.
Kickstart Scheme employer contacts
List of regional contacts for employers applying for a grant through the Kickstart Scheme.
Coronavirus outbreak FAQs: what you can and can’t do
Frequently asked questions on what you can and can’t do during the coronavirus outbreak – guidance updated in line with new regulations coming into force on 4 July
Apply for the coronavirus Future Fund
The Future Fund will provide UK Government loans to UK-based companies ranging from £125,000 to £5 million, subject to at least equal match funding from private investors.
Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme set to launch
Employers will be able to make claims through the Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme from 26 May.
Government – Guidance on Returning to Work safely
Government – Setting out of Road Map to recovery – 11th May 2020
Our plan to rebuild: The UK Government’s 60 page COVID-19 recovery strategy
The UK Government’s COVID-19 recovery strategy. The strategy sets out a cautious roadmap to easing existing measures in a safe and measured way, subject to successfully controlling the virus and being able to monitor and react to its spread.
Coronavirus Act 2020: status
A table setting out the status of each measure in the Coronavirus Act 2020.
Government – Financial Support
New 100% government backed loan scheme for small business
Government – Financial Support
CBILS – A guide to whether it may be the best options for a business
Government – Financial Support
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme – online claims portal open
Government – Business Support:
Government launches new coronavirus business support finder tool
Government – Business Support Hub:
Government – Business Support:
Government – Business Support: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19
Government – Financial Support: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-business-support-grant-funding
Bank of England – Financial Support: https://www.bankofengland.co.uk/news/2020/march/the-covid-corporate-financing-facility
Gov.uk: Maintaining Educational Provision: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-educational-provision/guidance-for-schools-colleges-and-local-authorities-on-maintaining-educational-provision
UK Lockdown – Further businesses to close and exceptions: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/874732/230320_-_Revised_guidance_note_-_finalVF
Health – updates from NHS
Health – Shielding the most vulnerable https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19
Media and Marketing:
Recruitment: – DWP and Universal Credit: http://news.dwp.gov.uk/dwplz/lz.aspx?p1=MQsDU1NjQ5MlM2OTA0OjNCNDJBOEZCRTJDOUJEOTc1ODQ0RTRCRDNDNzk4QUNF-&CC=&p=0
Retail: An update form British Retail Consortium https://brc.org.uk/news/corporate-affairs/coronavirus-latest-retailer-activity/
Resources available from Acas:
Redundancy letter templates
Redundancy process map Acas have also contributed to the development of a new return to work toolkit in partnership with SOM, CIPD, BITC and Mind.