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COVID CRISIS Coronavirus UK LIVE: Brits face cancelled summer holidays as new lockdown rules start today and death toll hits 32,692

COVID CRISIS Coronavirus UK LIVE: Brits face cancelled summer holidays as new lockdown rules start today and death toll hits 32,692
BRITS will be allowed to take unlimited outdoor exercise from today as new lockdown rules come into force.
People can now also go out and meet up with one other person from outside their household while builders and factory workers are encouraged to go back to work - as long as Covid-19 safety measures are in place.
But Health Secretary Matt Hancock warned that "big, lavish, international" summer holidays could be cancelled this year.
Employers could be prosecuted if they breach social distancing guidelines, government agency Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has warned.
HSE boss Sarah Albon said employers who put workers in danger of contracting coronavirus could also have their businesses closed or restricted by inspectors until standards are met.
It came as the coronavirus death toll in the UK increased to 32,692 after 627 more fatalities.
However, new figures show the death toll is as high as 40,383 once figures from Scotland and Northern Ireland are figured in, according to data from the Office for National Statistics.
On Tuesday, Chancellor Rishi Sunak confirmed the furlough scheme will be extended until the end of October.
The job-retention scheme will remain the same until July, but after August there will be changes, including the ability to be able to pay people part-time instead.
Mr Sunak said businesses will be expected to start contributing to help tackle the burden on the taxpayer from August.
The furlough scheme is currently paying 7.5 million workers 80 per cent of their wages - up to a limit of £2,500 per month. It currently costs £14billion a month.
Full details on the scheme will be released before the end of May, Mr Sunak confirmed.
An 'extraordinary' GP, who was still working at the age of 84, has become the ninth family doctor to die from coronavirus.
Dr Karamat Mirza, who was raised in Pakistan by a family of doctors before moving to England in 1966, was still treating patients up until two weeks ago.
But last Monday, Dr Mirza was taken to hospital after both he and his wife of 48 years, nurse Estelle, 71, tested positive for coronavirus having developed symptoms.
Mrs Mirza recovered, but her husband’s condition rapidly deteriorated while being cared for on a Covid-19 ward, and on Sunday, Mr Mirza sadly passed away at Colchester Hospital.
Dr Mirza, based in Clacton on Sea in Essex, became the fifth GP from the county to die from coronavirus
His wife, who has also worked at the Old Road Medical Practice in Clacton for the previous ten years, urged the people of Clacton to remember him for the man and community figure he was, and not just as another virus victim.
“The whole town has been left in shock and is grieving, and I can’t believe it,” she said.

The coronavirus crisis could cost taxpayers an estimated £300billion and may require an increase in taxes, according to Treasury documents.

The impact of the crisis could also bring about an end to the triple lock on state pensions and a two-year freeze on public sector pay.

The document, dated May 5, was drawn up by officials for Chancellor Rishi Sunak and labelled “Official – market sensitive”, the Telegraph reported.

It said that, under the scenario considered most likely, the country's budget deficit this year would be £337billion, as opposed to the £55billion forecast in March's budget.

Grant Shapps warned that the Government will have to “take steps” if too many people try to use the public transport system.
The Transport Secretary told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: “If we see the R number go up again – particularly above one – we will have to take steps. We all know what that means – it means going back to staying at home.
“We have got a big team of marshallers going out through Network Rail, Transport for London, we have got the British Transport Police out there, and we are even bringing in volunteers to remind people that we don't want to see platforms crowded.”
The UK economy shrank by 2 per cent in the first quarter of this year amid the coronavirus crisis.
It's the worst quarter fall since the height of the financial crash at the end of 2008, shocking new statistics show.
Meanwhile, the economy plunged 5.8 per cent in March as businesses shut down and Brits were furloughed, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has said.
The latest figures show the first direct effect of the Covid-19 pandemic on the UK economy after the country was placed in lockdown to control the spread of the virus.
But with the lockdown only coming into place on March 23, the figures only include one full week of lockdown.
The full hit on the economy won't show until the second quarter's results are revealed.
A 21-year-old plumber from Surrey who previously backed Boris Johnson's lockdown-easing plans has told Brits: “If you use your common sense, it’s safe to go back to work.”
The no-nonsense 31-year-old made headlines yesterday after appearing on Channel 4 News backing Boris Johnson’s lockdown plan, insisting it was not “hard to understand”.
And he added: “I’m not sure what you want? A full handbook to tell you what to do?”
    At least 20,000 people have lost their lives to coronavirus in care homes across the UK says a new report.
    The number was calculated by the Reuters news agency using data from the Office of National Statistics.
    The data showed that a total of 37,627 people died of all causes across care homes in England and Wales in the eight weeks to May 1.
    The agency compared the number of deaths to the average number in the same weeks over the previous five years.
    It found that an excess of 19,900 people had died over the period.
    It does not include care home deaths in Scotland or Northern Ireland, deaths since May 1, nor anyone who died in hospital after being transferred there from a care home.
  • 1 Hour Ago13th May 2020
    Taylor Wimpey will start reopen its show homes and sales centres from May 22.
    Customs can pre-book appointments from next Friday.
    The Government announced estate agents could resume viewings from today. Customers will be able to pre-book Taylor Wimpey has already restarted construction at most of its sites.
    Chief executive Pete Redfern said: “This relaxation of the rules by Government and the clear desire to reopen the housing market is very welcome.
    “However, we believe that it is our responsibility to apply these rules carefully and protect the health of our customers and employees.
    “Our people are looking forward to being able to welcome customers to their sales offices and show homes, energised by new skills developed in serving customers digitally over the last seven weeks.”
    Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has urged people not to “flood back” onto public transport as they return to work today.
    Today is the first day back to work for many across England after the Government announced an easing of the lockdown. 
    Mr Shapps has warned that the need to maintain social distancing means capacity on the transport network would be limited.
    He told Sky News: “We are asking people to be very sensible and not flood back to public transport.
    “Even with all the trains and buses back to running when they are, there will not be enough space. One-in-10 people will be able to travel without overcrowding.
    “It is very important that we enable enough space on public transport for key workers, people who have no other option.
    “It is very important that people don't overcrowd that system that will be extremely restricted for the time being.”
    Researchers have found that people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are more likely to develop severe complications or die from Covid-19.  
    They have a 60 per cent increased risk of dying of coronavirus.
    The scientists, from the University College London, also discovered that current smokers are nearly twice as likely to suffer life-threatening complications compared to those who have never smoked or had quit.  
    COPD causes inflammation in the lungs and a narrowing of the airways – which makes it harder to move air in and out as you breathe.
    It usually develops because of long-term damage to your lungs from breathing in a harmful substance, usually cigarette smoke, as well as smoke from other sources and air pollution.
    Pubs could spread into high streets and farmlands to open large beer gardens for socially-distant drinking.
    The proposals for pubs and restaurants were suggested by Tourism Alliance Director Kurt Janson after the announcement that the industry could restart in July.
    Mr Janson warned that the opening of establishments should be done case by case, due to the difference in size and capacity.
    He told Sun Online Travel: “At the moment, if you wanted to extend your cafe outside onto the pavement, you have to go through the planning process to do it which takes time.
    “The urgency of the situation should let shops look at having outdoor seating areas – which is a permitted development – meaning you can just do it.
    “Or you could change planning rules to shut down streets in the evenings.”
    The UK economy fell by two per cent in the first quarter of 2020. It plunged by 5.8 per cent in March as the coronavirus crisis escalated.
    The Office for National Statistics has said.
    It is the worst first quarter since the end of 2008 at the height of the financial crisis.
    Jonathan Athow, deputy national statistician for economic statistics at the Office for National Statistics (ONS), said: “With the arrival of the pandemic, nearly every aspect of the economy was hit in March, dragging growth to a record monthly fall.
    “Services and construction saw record declines on the month with education, car sales and restaurants all falling substantially.
    “Although very few industries saw growth, there were some that did, including IT support and the manufacture of pharmaceuticals, soaps and cleaning products.
    “The pandemic also hit trade globally, with UK imports and exports falling over the last couple of months, including a notable drop in imports from China.”
    The Department for Education last night said that childminders will now be allowed to look after children from a single household today.  
    They are able to provide care for multiple children from a single household as long as they are not already caring for vulnerable children and children of critical workers.
    The department said childminders will be able to reopen to all children from June 1.
    This is to enable more parents to return to work today.
    The Tui groups is looking to slash 8,000 jobs worldwide.
    The firm called the coronavirus pandemic “greatest crisis the industry… has faced”.
    The company said: “We are targeting to permanently reduce our overhead cost base by 30% across the entire group.
    “This will have an impact on potentially 8,000 roles globally that will either not be recruited or reduced.”
    Only one in ten commuters will be able to commute into work after the lockdown is lifted, Grant Shapps said today.
    And commuters should wear a mask, cycle if they can and leave big bags at home as Britain's lockdown is slowly eased. 
    Employees who cannot do their job from home have been given the green light to head back to the office, but must keep themselves and others safe from the virus.
    Anyone who doesn't absolutely have to take public transport shouldn't – walk, run or cycle your way to work instead, keeping a safe distance from others, new guidance from the Government says.
    But it adds if you do have to get on it, then try and face away from other people if you possibly can.

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