In yesterday's daily coronavirus briefing, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said it was "not sustainable" to keep the lockdown in place "permanently" but that the Government was monitoring the changes it was making.

Mr Raab said: "It is true to say that making any changes inherently comes with some risk of spreading the virus compared with simply staying at home.

"But it is also true that staying in permanent lockdown is itself not sustainable on health grounds or economic grounds."

In other coronavirus related news:

  • Everyone aged five and over is now eligible to be tested for coronavirus if they are showing symptoms, which have been expanded to included a loss of taste or smell.
  • Local coronavirus cases update: Darlington - 352, County Durham - 1,829, Hartlepool - 295, Middlesbrough - 634, Redcar and Cleveland - 386, Stockton - 502, North Yorkshire - 1,248, York - 439, Newcastle - 1,022, North Tyneside - 553, South Tyneside - 714, Sunderland - 1,352, Northumberland - 915, Gateshead - 982.
  • Health Secretary Matt Hancock said people who are experiencing a loss or change in their sense of smell, even without any other coronavirus symptom, should self-isolate for seven days.
  • Newcastle United will join other Premier League clubs in resuming training in small groups from today.
  • The debate over whether or not lockdown should be lifted on a regional basis intensified at the weekend amid calls for the Government to publish the differing R values across the country.
  • The European Union and other countries have called for an independent evaluation of the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) response to the coronavirus pandemic “to review experience gained and lessons learned”.
  • Ireland has taken its first steps out of coronavirus lockdown. Phase one of the country’s five phase exit plan was triggered on Monday. Some retail outlets are reopening, outdoor work is resuming and sports like golf and tennis can be played again.
  • A Roman Catholic priest in a US city is using a water pistol in a bid to maintain social distancing during the Covid-19 pandemic. Photos posted on social media by St Ambrose Church in Detroit show Father Tim Pelc shooting holy water into a car window as it stopped by the steps of the church on Easter.
  • Eleven further deaths were reported in the North East and Yorkshire.
  • Around 500 people are to benefit from an experimental treatment for Covid-19 after 1,000 units of plasma were donated from recovered patients.
  • Ryanair has said it expects passenger numbers to almost half in the current financial year as it warns that it faces a “difficult” year ahead following the impact of coronavirus.
  • Japan’s economy plunged into recession in the first quarter as the coronavirus pandemic suppressed business activity, while leaders in the US and Europe are weighing the risks and rewards of lifting Covid-19 restrictions knowing that a vaccine could take years to develop.
  • Poorer families are less likely to want to send their children back to school amid the Covid-19 pandemic, despite these pupils having fewer opportunities for home learning, a survey suggests.
  • Extra trains are expected to take thousands more people back to work under the Government’s plan to accelerate economic activity by lifting lockdown restrictions.
  • Children are "not the primary drivers of Covid-19 spread" in schools, according to a study reportedly being considered by the Government.
  • If the Covid-19 vaccine candidate developed by Oxford University proves successful in human trials then up to 30 million doses for the UK could be available by September, the Government has said.