UK coronavirus LIVE: Priti Patel announces new quarantine rules as Covid-19 death toll rises by 351

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  • May 22, 2020
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People arriving in the UK from June 8 will have to self-isolate for 14 days under new rules announced today.

Home Secretary Priti Patel announced the new measures in Downing Street and said they would be reviewed every three weeks.

It comes as it emerged “healthy” people with no coronavirus symptoms will still need to self-isolate under new contact tracing plans, Matt Hancock revealed today.

Meanwhile, the death toll among people in the UK who have tested positive for coronavirus rose by 351 to 36,393 .

Follow our live updates below…

Live Updates


That’s all for our live coronavirus coverage tonight. Tune in again tomorrow morning for more live updates. 

For now read more about the crisis:

Thousands of Covid-19 home test kits not sent back, testing boss says

Thousands of coronavirus home testing kits have not been sent back, the Government’s testing coordinator has admitted.

Some 762,252 tests have now been posted to people’s homes but Professor John Newton said not all had been returned for analysis.

He told the Science and Technology Select Committee on Friday that more than half had been returned, but he did not have an up-to-date figure.

He added: “I think certainly more than half, and we would like to get that amount up.


Anna Soubry reacts to reports that Dominic Cummings breached lockdown

Former Conservative minister Anna Soubry has called the Government “arrogant and elitist” following claims Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s senior adviser Dominic Cummings breached lockdown rules by visiting his parents’ home.


US stock indexes have finished mostly higher on Friday as Wall Street shook off an early slide, closing out a solid week of gains for the market.

The S&P 500 index inched up 0.2% after having been down 0.5%. It ended the week with a 3.2% gain, largely due to a big rally on Monday that offset all of the benchmark index’s losses from earlier in the month.

Strength in technology, communications and real estate stocks helped reverse much of the market’s early slide. Energy stocks fell the most as crude oil prices closed lower after six straight gains. Bond yields were mixed.

Trading was choppy for much of the day ahead of the long holiday weekend. Markets in the US will be closed on Monday for Memorial Day.

Fresh hopes for a US economic recovery in the second half of the year and optimism about a potential vaccine for Covid-19 helped spur stocks higher for much of the week.

Investors are betting that the economy and corporate profits will begin to recover from the coronavirus pandemic as the US and countries around the world slowly open up again.

Traders remain wary, however, that the reopening of businesses could lead to another surge in infections, potentially hobbling efforts to get the nation’s battered economy growing again.

“We’re in a bit of a hold right now looking for the next catalyst,” said Brian Levitt, global market strategist at Invesco. “There’s still an awful lot of uncertainty we have to work though.”


Irish airline Aer Lingus intends to lay off staff after a Government wage subsidy scheme expires next month, a trade union said.

It has been buffeted by the coronavirus crisis which has devastated the aviation industry.

Forsa official Angela Kirk represents cabin crew and other grades and said the national carrier’s plans were premature.

“The effect of Covid-19 is not just an issue for Aer Lingus and its staff.

“It’s the most significant crisis for the entire Irish aviation industry in a generation, with the potential to adversely affect the commercial connectivity of the country.

“To act unilaterally now, and to abandon the efforts to negotiate a solution to the current crisis, and plan for a future recovery, is to squander the time remaining to negotiate real solutions.”

In a memo to members issued after the meeting, unions said the airline had confirmed its intention to extend current arrangements for pay, funded in part by the Irish Government’s wage subsidy scheme, until June 21.

The current official subsidy scheme is due to end next month but the caretaker Government has said it will continue in a modified way beyond that.

Forsa said: “The company’s plans to unilaterally lay off staff and to reduce hours and pay after 21st June is premature.”

Negotiations on the restructuring of Aer Lingus have been taking place between unions and management.

Workers’ representatives led by the Irish Congress of Trade Unions (ICTU) met the company on Friday afternoon.

Airlines have been grappling with a catastrophic decline in customer demand during the pandemic.


This is the moment a journalist was interrupted by his five-year-old daughter as he tried to ask First Minister Nicola Sturgeon a question:

Journalist’s young daughter steals the limelight during press briefing

This is the moment a journalist was interrupted by his five-year-old daughter as he tried to ask First Minister Nicola Sturgeon a question on childcare responsibilities during the coronavirus pandemic.

Chris Musson, the political editor of the Scottish Sun, was asking Ms Sturgeon about the possibility of mothers being forced out of work due to having to look after their children.


SNP Westminster Leader Ian Blackford reacts:

SNP Westminster Leader Ian Blackford has responded to a report that Mr Cummings was spotted at his parents’ home in Durham when he was recovering from Covid-19 by calling for the resignation or sacking of Boris Johnson’s senior aide.


Read our full story on the erupting Dominic Cummings row here:


Students can sit exams in Autumn

Students could sit A-level exams in October and GCSEs in November if they are unhappy with their summer results, under proposals published by the Government.

Exact dates have not been released because of the continued uncertainty around the full reopening of schools and colleges, exams regulator Ofqual said.

Following the closure of schools in March, the Department for Education said pupils in England would be awarded calculated grades based on teacher assessment.

Ofqual has now confirmed that grades will be standardised taking account of the expected national outcomes for this year’s students, prior attainment of student cohorts and previous results of the school or college.

The autumn exams would be for students who want to try and improve the grade they receive this summer, and for those who are unable to receive a calculated grade.

Following concerns some students might not be able to resit exams in all subjects, Ofqual has proposed requiring exam boards to offer the same range of exams in autumn as they would have done in summer.

A decision on when the exams will take place will be informed by advice from Government, exam boards and groups representing schools, colleges, teachers and students, Ofqual added.


Durham police confirmed officers had spoken to the owners of an address in the city after reports a person had travelled there from London.

A spokesman for Durham Constabulary said: “On Tuesday March 31, our officers were made aware of reports that an individual had travelled from London to Durham and was present at an address in the city.

“Officers made contact with the owners of that address who confirmed that the individual in question was present and was self-isolating in part of the house.

“In line with national policing guidance, officers explained to the family the guidelines around self-isolation and reiterated the appropriate advice around essential travel”.


Just in…

Close friends of Dominic Cummings said: “He isn’t remotely bothered by this story, it’s more fake news from the Guardian. There is zero chance of him resigning.”


More reactions flood in to reports Dominic Cummings broke lockdown rules

Labour MP Angela Eagle and Labour (Co-op) MP Stella Creasy have reacted to a report that Dominic Cummings was spotted at his parents’ home in Durham when he was recovering from Covid-19, after travelling from his London home.


Here’s the latest on the lockdown:


Acting Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey has called for Dominic Cummings to resign if he has broken lockdown guidelines.

“If Dominic Cummings has broken the lockdown guidelines he will have to resign. It’s as simple as that,” Sir Davey said.



The Labour Party has demanded a “very swift explanation” from Downing Street over reports that Boris Johnson’s senior aide Dominic Cummings broke the Government’s lockdown rules.

The Mirror reported that he was spotted at his parents’ home in Durham when he was recovering from Covid-19, after travelling from his London home.

A Labour spokesman said: “If accurate, the Prime Minister’s chief adviser appears to have breached the lockdown rules. The Government’s guidance was very clear: stay at home and no non-essential travel.

“The British people do not expect there to be one rule for them and another rule for Dominic Cummings. Number 10 needs to provide a very swift explanation for his actions.”


Belfast care home residents relocated due to concerns over outbreak

Residents are being relocated from Clifton Nursing Home in Belfast after what health minister Robin Swann said were “ongoing concerns” relating partly to its management of a Covid-19 outbreak.

He added: “Senior nursing and other staff from Belfast Trust are and will continue to be on the ground in the home to ensure the safety and wellbeing of residents.

“This will be essential to give the necessary time to move residents at a safe pace and in consultation with them and their families.”


A malaria drug touted as a possible coronavirus treatment is linked to increased rates of mortality and heart rhythm problems among hospital patients with Covid-19, according to new research.  


Tesco adds hundreds of disabled people to shopping priority list

Tesco is adding hundreds of disabled people to its shopping priority list, following legal action by shoppers with disabilities unable to book delivery slots during the coronavirus crisis.

Some 350 people have sent claims to major UK supermarkets for breaching the Equality Act 2010, according to firm Fry Law, which is representing the individuals.

Many of them are taking action against two or three supermarkets each, claiming that reasonable adjustments have not been made to enable those with disabilities to shop during the Covid-19 outbreak.

Specialist disability discrimination lawyer Chris Fry said a letter before action was sent to Tesco on Wednesday on behalf of Joanne Baskett, who has multiple health problems and is unable to leave her home.

He said Tesco have agreed to put Ms Baskett and all other Fry Law clients on their priority list, which allows supermarkets to target online deliveries at those most in need.

The supermarket is now also encouraging any customers facing similar issues with booking an online delivery slot to get in contact.


Lack of clarity over holidays 

Britons continue to face a lack of clarity about what will happen with summer holidays abroad after the Home Secretary announced quarantine measures for people arriving in the UK.

From June 8, travellers coming to the UK will have to self-isolate for 14 days on arrival or risk being fined, prosecuted and even deported if they do not comply.

But when asked if this means holidays abroad will no longer go ahead this summer, Priti Patel said the quarantine measures were “absolutely not about booking holidays”.

Ms Patel said the measures were being brought in for “very clear” reasons, adding the Government and Foreign Office is still advising people to embark on only “essential” travel.


Donald Trump has said he is identifying houses of worship as “essential places that supply essential purposes”

He said that like “abortion clinics” they should be considered houses “essential”.

He called on governors to allow them to reopen this weekend.