Tuesday briefing: This is lockdown UK | World news

Prime story: Time to ‘do extra’ – by doing a lot much less

Good morning, locked-down Britain. Hope you’re staying nicely and maintaining spirits up as greatest you possibly can, no matter your state of affairs.

The lockdown now in power means individuals throughout the UK might solely depart dwelling in a small range of limited circumstances. They embrace searching for requirements; one train outing a day, corresponding to working or biking, alone or with family members; for medical causes or, for instance, to look after a weak particular person; and going to work, if you happen to can’t make money working from home. “The time has now come for us all to do extra,” mentioned Boris Johnson in a televised handle to the nation. “From this night I have to give the British individuals a quite simple instruction – you must stay at home.” Final evening, emergency laws together with sweeping powers to ban gatherings and forcibly quarantine suspected coronavirus patients was handed by MPs with out opposition.

Assembly pals, searching for something past necessities, and gatherings of greater than two individuals are banned. Police will be capable to impose fines on individuals who don’t abide by the principles. All outlets promoting non-essential items, together with hair and nail salons, should shut, together with all markets other than meals markets, and all venues corresponding to libraries, playgrounds, church buildings, resorts, B&Bs, campsites and caravan parks (aside from to everlasting residents or key employees). Social occasions corresponding to weddings and baptisms are off, however funerals are permitted. Oddly, bosses at Sports activities Direct and Evans Cycles have claimed the group’s stores will remain open “where possible” as a result of they promote dwelling train gear, which, administration argues, makes them an important asset, in line with an electronic mail seen by the PA information company.

Away from the UK in a single day, in a televised press convention from the White Home, Donald Trump has mentioned he desires to get the US economic system going once more as quickly as potential and isn’t open to the thought of restrictive public well being measures happening for months.

Donald Trump dismisses coronavirus as a ‘purely medical drawback’ – video

“Our nation was not built to be shut down,” Trump mentioned. “This isn’t a rustic that was constructed for this.” The president’s strategy to the emergency continues to confound: he has sweeping reserve powers to take care of the disaster, however given his veering public pronouncements, no one is confident about what he may or may not do.

All over the world, about one in 5 individuals – an estimated 1.7 billion – at the moment are living under some state of lockdown. There are a minimum of 378,679 confirmed circumstances. Greater than 16,500 individuals have died, whereas virtually 101,000 have recovered. The primary 100,000 circumstances took 67 days to emerge; the most recent 100,000 simply 4 days, however “we’re not helpless bystanders”, mentioned Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, head of the World Well being Group, which is urging continued pressing international motion. Head to our live blog for steady updates throughout the day.

There’s extra in our Coronavirus Additional part additional down … and right here’s the place yow will discover all our coverage of the outbreak – from breaking news to fact checks and advice.

Salmond cleared – Alex Salmond, the previous Scotland first minister, has been acquitted of all charges of sexual assault, prompting allies to counsel he was the sufferer of a Scottish Nationwide occasion plot. The jury discovered Salmond not responsible of 12 costs of tried rape, sexual assault and indecent assault after about six hours of deliberations. They returned a verdict of not confirmed on one cost of sexual assault with intent to rape. Talking afterwards, Salmond mentioned there was “sure proof I wish to have seen led on this trial however for a wide range of causes we weren’t in a position to take action. In some unspecified time in the future that data, that truth and that proof will see the sunshine of day nevertheless it received’t be at the present time, for an excellent motive.” The SNP chief and first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, mentioned the verdicts “should be revered” and her focus was on the coronavirus disaster. “I’ve little question that there might be additional dialogue round this situation in the end.” Libby Brooks, Scotland correspondent, writes this morning: “The decision introduced probably the most vital case in Scottish authorized historical past to an finish – nevertheless it additionally marked a brand new chapter in a battle that would tear the SNP leadership apart.”

Britain held to rights – The UK’s low age of prison accountability, minimal pay charges for younger youngsters and failure to utterly outlaw corporal punishment breach Council of Europe standards, in line with its newest report. The council has 47 member states together with Britain and is separate from the European Union. It regards its findings as legally binding however the UK authorities doesn’t. Criticisms within the report embrace allowing pain-inducing restraint methods, “insufficient” statutory maternity pay after six weeks, and lack of an unbiased proper to stay for members of the family of migrant employees who train their proper to “household reunion”. By way of corporal punishment, the Council of Europe is important of England, Wales and Northern Eire the place smacking, outlined as “cheap chastisement” stays authorized; it was not too long ago banned in Scotland.

Dip in highway restore – The variety of potholes repaired in England and Wales has fallen by a fifth prior to now 12 months amid a decline in highway upkeep budgets, figures present. Councils’ freeway upkeep budgets fell by 16%, whereas compensation they paid for injury attributable to poor highway circumstances elevated by 17% to £8.1m. In his price range the chancellor, Rishi Sunak, introduced £2.5bn of additional funding over 5 years for potholes in England. The AA president, Edmund King, warned this “received’t do the job”. Steve Gooding from the RAC Basis mentioned that given coronavirus pressures, “now doesn’t really feel like the fitting second” to demand more cash for roads. “However trying additional forward to … the possible must stimulate a deadened economic system, this report ought to immediate authorities to contemplate committing to an ambitious maintenance initiative for the most important local roads.”

Faucet it, don’t catch it – The contactless limit for in-store spending is to extend from £30 to £45 from 1 April to chop the necessity for bodily contact. However retailers have warned it might take a while to be introduced in all over the place. Cell phone customers can already make contactless funds above £30 relying on the retailer.

Coronavirus further

China says it has defeated the coronavirus: authorities declare that circumstances of native transmission have slowed to a trickle, with any others originating from overseas. Cities throughout the nation are being ordered to “totally restore” manufacturing and resume regular life. However specialists fear concerning the veracity of the numbers and whether or not leaders have prioritised restarting the economy over decisively containing the virus.

For Science Weekly, Sarah Boseley speaks to Prof Deenan Pillay about how the coronavirus contaminates surfaces and why headlines about how long it can survive outside the body could also be deceptive. And, following listener questions, we discover out whether or not or not Sars-CoV-2 can survive in a swimming pool.

Science Weekly

How lengthy can coronavirus reside on surfaces?

Some airways and tour corporations are refusing to situation refunds regardless of their authorized obligations to take action, in line with the buyer group Which?, with holidaymakers left hundreds of kilos out of pocket. Patrick Collinson examines the situation.

Hundreds of employees will proceed to assemble on the Hinkley Level C nuclear web site however work on the £106bn HS2 challenge could possibly be halted; Crossrail and two main hospital building tasks will stay open for now. Building corporations say all the pieces is being accomplished to stop transmission of coronavirus, balanced towards trying to prevent industry collapse and loss of jobs.

At present in Focus podcast: Emergency powers defined

A brand new authorities invoice that brings sweeping new powers to close down mass gatherings, doubtlessly detain people with coronavirus symptoms and weaken the social care security internet is being rushed by means of parliament. The Guardian’s Peter Walker explains what’s at stake.

At present in Focus

Emergency powers defined

Lunchtime learn: ‘I used to be fairly wild’

Because the hard-partying, shamelessly bawdy ex-YBA Sarah Lucas thunders in direction of her 60s, she tells Andrew Gilchrist about her “knobby guys”, life in metal-detecting nation – and dealing with all her hair falling out final 12 months.

Sarah Lucas

Sarah Lucas. {Photograph}: Linda Nylind/The Guardian


The International Olympic Committee is going through virtually irresistible stress to this week postpone the Tokyo Olympic Games quite than wait till its mid-April deadline – with a rising variety of athletes, governments and national federations saying it’s unfair to maintain them in limbo throughout the coronavirus pandemic. The Azerbaijan Grand Prix on 7 June has develop into the eighth assembly of the Formula One season to be called off. Premiership Rugby is contemplating midweek matches in order to finish the season in addition to slashing the size of its summer season break in a transfer that would severely jeopardise participant welfare. And one of many final working skilled soccer competitions, the A-League, has lastly been suspended to carry all top level Australian sport to a halt.


Asian inventory markets have gained after the US Federal Reserve promised help to the struggling economic system. Congress delayed motion on a $2tn coronavirus assist package deal. Market benchmarks in Tokyo and South Korea have risen almost 7% whereas Shanghai, Hong Kong and Australian markets have additionally gained. At time of writing the pound is value $1.160 and €1.076.

The papers

You may see the front pages here – a abstract follows. The Guardian says in the present day that Boris Johnson will order police to implement a strict coronavirus lockdown, with gatherings of greater than two individuals banned. The headline: “PM: Keep at dwelling, it is a nationwide emergency”. The Solar has “Home arrest” as its headline accompanying some bleak paintings imposing the union flag on a padlock.

Guardian front page, Tuesday 24 March 2020

Guardian entrance web page, Tuesday 24 March 2020.

The Mail has “Lockdown Britain” on the entrance web page because it studies all non-essential outlets will shut for a possible minimal of three weeks. The Categorical tells its readers: “You have to keep at dwelling … for all our sakes”. The Mirror studies the PM as saying solely drastic motion can assist the NHS cope: “Nationwide lockdown” is the headline.

The Occasions goes with “You have to keep at dwelling” and says fines for breaking the brand new guidelines will vary from £30 to £1,000 as soon as laws passes on Thursday. The Telegraph goes it alone with a libertarian-sounding take: “Finish of freedom”. The FT has “Johnson compelled to shut Britain in bid to halt speedy unfold of virus”. Metro says “Britain on lockdown” and the i has “Lockdown UK. Public advised: keep indoors”.


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