Watch: Priti Patel defends local COVID approach
Here’s what you need to know on 29 October. This article was updated at 4.20pm.
Deaths: Scotland has recorded 37 deaths from coronavirus in the last 24 hours, and there have been eight in Northern Ireland. Wales recorded 21 deaths. A total of 280 people died in the whole of the UK. Read more here.
England’s daily coronavirus death toll could reach up to 422 on 5 November, a report has suggested. Cambridge scientists have predicted between 237 and 422 people will die with the coronavirus on 5 November, just one week away. Read more here.
Bobby Ball, one half of Cannon and Ball, has died at the age of 76 after testing positive for the coronavirus. Read more here.
Policy: The government is resisting pressure for a national lockdown amid rising case numbers around the UK. Data from round six of the Imperial College London Real-time Assessment of Community Transmission (React) study estimates there are around 96,000 new infections per day, and found early signs that numbers in low-risk areas are following trends observed in the worst-affected regions. Read more here.
Vaccine: A COVID vaccine could be ready for distribution by as early as Christmas, after reaching its “last mile” of development, reports suggest. The government has already bought up 40 million doses of the drug, from German firm BioNtech and backed by pharmaceuticals giant Pfizer, according to The Times. Read more here.
Watch: Scottish ‘ghost towns’ warning if stricter measures implemented
Scotland: Nicola Sturgeon has unveiled which areas of Scotland will go into which parts of its five tier lockdown system, which comes into place on Monday. No area will immediately go into the top level, which is close to full lockdown. Read more here.
England: Oxford is to move into Tier 2 of restrictions from Saturday morning. The city council said the move was because the virus is spreading to more vulnerable people.
Tory MP Jacob Young, who represents Redcar, said he thought the Teesside region would be in Tier 3 of lockdown rules in the next week. He said previous talks had been paused when it appeared infection rates were levelling off.
Wales: Mark Drakeford has set out the plan for Wales after the fire break lockdown comes to an end. The First Minister appears unlikely to follow England and Scotland in a tiered system, instead operating with one set of rules across the whole country. Read more here.