The number of people vaccinated against COVID-19 in the UK has hit 45 million, while the number of daily cases reported has dipped slightly.
Friday's total is well up on this time last week, however, when there were 15,810 new cases. Another 27 deaths have also been reported - compared to 22 yesterday and 18 last Friday.
On the vaccination front, 45,013,503 people across the UK have now had their first jab - 85.5% of all adults.
There were 152,525 first doses administered on Thursday and 193,066 second doses, meaning 33,241,265 people are now fully vaccinated against coronavirus (63.1% of adults).
Health Secretary Sajid Javid said the rollout was a "phenomenal achievement", saving "more than 27,000 lives", and praised young people for "coming forward so quickly for their jabs" during the final stage of the campaign.
Despite this week having seen the highest daily number of new cases in some five months, latest estimates suggest England's R number has fallen slightly to between 1.1 and 1.3.
Last week it was listed as between 1.2 and 1.4.
An R value - or reproduction number - between 1.1 and 1.3 means that, on average, every 10 people infected with COVID-19 will go on to infect between 11 and 13 other people.
But one expert has warned that the UK remains under threat from its "own form of a COVID Mexican wave", as infections move from the west to the east.
Professor Tim Spector, co-founder of the ZOE COVID symptom study, said areas in the west which have been worst affected are now seeing lower rates, suggesting they have reached the peak of infections.
However, London, the South East, East Anglia and eastern parts of the country are seeing cases increase, with UK holiday destinations partly to blame for the wave.
Following reports that Ms Merkel had been hoping to encourage EU countries to ban British travellers from the bloc regardless of whether or not they have had a vaccine, due to the rise of the Delta variant, there were concerns that Britons hoping for a European holiday this summer would have to look elsewhere for a break.
But after talks with Mr Johnson at the prime minister's official country retreat of Chequers, Ms Merkel said: "We are reviewing continuously our travel restrictions - and we think that in the foreseeable future, those who have received double jabs will then be able to travel again without going into quarantine."