UK reports just one more Covid-19 death as 1,649 further cases are recorded

Michael Howie and Barney Davis
·2-min read
<p>A man paints a heart on the National Covid Memorial Wall in London</p> (AP)

A man paints a heart on the National Covid Memorial Wall in London

(AP)

The UK reported 1,649 new Covid-19 infections on Monday and one new death within 28 days of a positive test.

Monday is a public holiday, which has in the past affected the numbers reported. The UK death toll from the disease now stands at 127,539.

Vaccination data showed 34,588,600 people had received their first dose across England with the UK total hitting 50 million.

It comes as Boris Johnson said there is a “good chance” the one-metre plus rule for social distancing can be ditched next month.

Speaking during a campaign visit to Hartlepool, Mr Johnson told reporters: “As things stand, and the way things are going, with the vaccine rollout going the way that it is – we have done 50 million jabs as I speak to you today, quarter of the adult population, one in four have had two jabs.

“You are seeing the results of that really starting to show up in the epidemiology.

“I think that we will be able to go ahead, feels like May 17 is going to be good.

“But it also looks to me as though June 21 we’ll be able to say social distancing as we currently have to do it, the one-metre plus, I think we have got a good chance of being able to dispense with the one-metre plus from June 21.

“That is still dependent on the data, we can’t say it categorically yet, we have got to look at the epidemiology as we progress, we have got to look at where we get to with the disease. But that’s what it feels like to me right now.”

It comes as the Government announced the limit on the number of mourners who can attend funerals is to be lifted in England.

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) said the legal restriction of a maximum of 30 mourners will be removed as part of the next stage of lockdown easing, expected on May 17.

The capacity will be determined by how many people venues, such as places of worship or funeral homes, can safely accommodate while maintaining social distancing, the department added.

The ban on foreign holidays is expected to be lifted for people in England from May 17 as part of the next easing of coronavirus restrictions.

But Mr Johnson has cautioned that while there will be “some openings up” from that date, the approach must be “sensible” to avoid an “influx of disease” when international travel resumes.

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