COMMUNITIES Secretary Robert Jenrick has said a “full briefing” will be given on Thursday about planned new Covid restrictions for parts of the North-East ahead of the measures coming into place at midnight on Thursday/Friday.

He told ITV’s Peston show: “The number of cases has been rising rapidly in many parts of the country, but in particular in the North-East, and so a decision has been made to impose further restrictions there.

“And a full announcement will be made tomorrow and so people living in that part of the country should watch out for that. And the measures will come into play at midnight on Thursday evening.

“So, over the course of the day a full briefing will be made available to everybody including the councils and business community.”

A spokesman for the Department of Health and Social Care added: “We constantly monitor infection rates across the country and keep all measures under review in consultation with local leaders.

“Any changes to local restrictions will be announced in the usual way.”

It emerged earlier this evening that, at the request of councils in Newcastle, Northumberland, North Tyneside, South Tyneside, Gateshead, County Durham and Sunderland, stricter measures to curb the spread of coronavirus would be announced on Thursday.

These are understood to include a ban on members of more than one household socialising, and pubs closing at 10pm.