Boris Johnson to give press conference at 5pm - watch live Ministers consider £500 payment for positive Covid test Boris Johnson suggests lockdown could last until summer Fraser Nelson: Vaccines may usher in Fortress Britain Coronavirus latest news: R-rate falls below 1 across the UK Subscribe to The Telegraph for a month-long free trial There is "some evidence" the new variant of coronavirus discovered in Kent more deadly than the original, Boris Johnson has said. The Prime Minister said the latest scientific evidence shows the new variant have a higher risk of death. "It is largely the impact of this new variant that means the NHS is under so much intense pressure," he said. Prof Neil Ferguson, who sits on Nervtag, the Government's virus advisory committee, said the latest data showed up to 13 in 1000 people aged 60 who contract the variant strain could die, compared with 10 in 1000 who caught the original variant. "It is a realistic possibility that the new UK variant increases the risk of death, but there is considerable remaining uncertainty," Prof Ferguson told ITV. "Four groups - Imperial, LSHTM, PHE and Exeter - have looked at the relationship between people testing positive for the variant vs old strains and the risk of death." The professor said the data available on the new variant is patchy, but there is a "signal" that there is a "1.3-fold increased risk of death". The new variant, which has now been reported across the UK and in several other countries, is also more transmissable. Follow the latest updates below.