Coronavirus cases in England are at their highest level since May – with London recording the highest rates in the country – as scientists warn that infections are increasing in some areas despite lockdown restrictions.
Professor Paul Elliott, who leads Imperial College London’s React study, said that although Covid case rates are starting to decline nationwide, "we are unfortunately seeing a rise in the East Midlands and a flattening off in other regions in the West Midlands and the North of the country.”
It comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that measures would remain in place until at least March 8. The UK also announced an expansion of the travel 'red list, with flights from the United Arab Emirates, Burundi and Rwanda banned from 1pm on Friday.
Meanwhile, a further 1,239 Covid-19 deaths were announced, bringing the UK’s total to 103,126, as the manufacture of a new Valneva vaccine began in Scotland in a boost to Britain’s mass vaccination efforts.