What time is Boris Johnson's press conference tonight?

Victoria Bell
·4 min read
Prime Minister Boris Johnson during a virtual press conference at Downing Street, London, following the announcement that the legal limit on social gatherings is set to be reduced from 30 people to six. The change in the law in England will come into force on Monday as the Government seeks to curb the rise in coronavirus cases.
Boris Johnson will hold a press conference in Downing Street at 5pm on Monday, No 10 has confirmed. (PA)

Boris Johnson will hold a coronavirus press conference in Downing Street at 5pm today, No 10 has confirmed.

He will be joined by deputy chief medical officer Professor Jonathan Van-Tam and Brigadier Joe Fossey of the Royal Engineering Corps.

The press conference is expected to focus on Liverpool’s mass-testing trial, which began last week, and plans to expand the operation to more locations around the country.

Johnson is also expected to talk about the current coronavirus situation in the UK and the impact of, and issues relating to, England’s second national lockdown.

How can I watch it?

The statement will be live at 5pm on Monday and will be available on most news networks across the country.

What is it going to be about?

Johnson will be joined by Brigadier Joe Fossey of the Royal Engineering Corps, which has been conducting the mass-testing pilot scheme in Liverpool.

Six new testing centres opened in the city at midday on Friday as part of the government’s Operation Moonshot drive to eventually test up to 10 million people a day.

Reports say the army is being sent into the city this week to help carry out mass testing of children in secondary schools.

Soldiers direct people at The Exhibition Centre in Liverpool, which has been set up as a testing centre as part of the mass Covid-19 testing in Liverpool.
Soldiers direct people at The Exhibition Centre in Liverpool, which has been set up as a testing centre as part of the mass Covid-19 testing in Liverpool. (PA)

Johnson may reveal plans to increase the widespread testing to more locations across the country.

The statement may also include updates on the new COVID vaccine from Pfizer, which has been found to be more than 90% effective in ongoing Phase 3 trials.

The pharmaceutical giant and its partner BioNTech said interim results showed the jab could prevent people developing from developing the disease, the companies announced on Monday.

Dr Albert Bourla, Pfizer chair, said: “Today is a great day for science and humanity.”

The vaccine has been tested on 43,500 people in six countries and no safety concerns have been raised.

Watch: Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine ‘90% effective in preventing the disease’

What is the latest situation in COVID?

On Sunday, the number of people reported to have tested positive for COVID-19 in the UK increased by 20,572, down from 24,957 on Saturday.

Official figures also showed 156 people had died after testing positive for coronavirus, compared to Saturday's figure of 413.

Remembrance Sunday was marked with socially distanced services and minimal attendance after England went into full national lockdown on Thursday following Johnson’s Halloween statement.

Non-essential shops and businesses are closed, while people will have to stay at home as much as possible under new regulations set by the government for the four-week lockdown.

New data last week showed the coronavirus reproduction rate – known as R – has stayed the same as last week, suggesting we may have passed the peak of the second wave.

The current R value – the number of people an infected person will pass COVID-19 on to – is estimated to be between 1.1 and 1.3.

Tim Spector, the principal investigator for the Zoe COVID Symptom Study app, believes cases are already on the decline.

Citing evidence from the app, users of which which users update their symptoms daily and say whether they have been tested, Spector said “we have passed the peak in second wave new cases in the UK”.

He tweeted: “There will be a four-week lag before this is seen in a decline in deaths and 1-2 weeks in hospitalisation.”

Watch: Exceptions to England’s new national lockdown