Here are the latest updates from the last 24 hours

  • There have been nearly 1,200 additional coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours across the North-East and North Yorkshire, according to the latest statistics. The Government said a further 316 people who tested positive for coronavirus have died in hospital in England, bringing the total number of confirmed deaths reported in hospitals to 38,112, NHS England said on Saturday.As of 9am on Saturday, there had been a further 19,875 lab-confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK, bringing the total number of cases to 1,493,383
  • England will enter a strengthened three-tiered system of local restrictions when the national lockdown ends on December 2, Downing Street has said. Boris Johnson is expected to detail his plan for winter, which includes details on how families can see their loved ones at Christmas, to MPs on Monday. The “Covid winter plan” is expected to place more areas into the higher tiers to keep the virus under control to ensure further restrictions are not needed, No 10 said. And while some local measures will be the same as those in the previous system, some tiers will be strengthened to safeguard the gains made during the national lockdown. The Prime Minister will accept that the measures are difficult but will make clear they are not to last longer than is absolutely necessary and will take into account the need to support the economy. The Cabinet is expected to discuss and sign off the plan on Sunday before Mr Johnson announces it to Parliament the following day when the full details are expected.
  • ChancelloR Rishi Sunak will announce a £500 million package to support mental health services as part of measures to recover from the coronavirus crisis. The Treasury said he will pledge the new funding in his spending review on Wednesday, when he will also deliver his long-term plan for infrastructure investment. The majority of the spending is planned to go on specialist services for young people, including in schools, and support for NHS workers. But Mr Sunak is also expected to make a vow for rapid progress to tackle the backlog of adult mental health referrals. The Government estimates that mental ill health costs the economy up to £35 billion per year, and hopes the package will address the extra demand for services from the pandemic.
  • The first member of the public to take part in the mass coronavirus test pilot in Merthyr Tydfil was 82-year-old Shirley Jones. Her partner of 20 years, Desmond Rogers, 83, had died at the town’s Prince Charles Hospital the previous day from cancer. She told the PA news agency: “He’d been there for a while, he had bowel cancer. It went to his stomach and his throat. I couldn’t say goodbye to him. I couldn’t tell him that I love him or that the Lord will be with him. I couldn’t give him comfort. I’ve got to do this because I think it’s right that we should all come up here and support the Government and get this test. It’s very important that we do it."
  • Professor Calum Semple said it was “surprising” how much cold storage was available for vaccines that needed to be kept at minus 70C or minus 80C (minus 94F to minus 112F). He also told BBC Breakfast there was evidence these vaccines could be kept out of cold storage for a short period without damaging their effectiveness. “There’s good news here as well because along with developing the cold chain for minus 70C or minus 80C freezer system throughout the country, there’s now growing evidence that the last, not quite the last mile, but if you think ‘the last day’ can actually be done at a lower temperature without damaging the vaccine’s effectiveness,” he said.
  • The Prime Minister has urged people who are self-isolating to keep themselves socially distanced from those they live with, in a video update from Downing Street. Boris Johnson has been self-isolating for six days after a meeting with Tory MP Lee Anderson, who later tested positive for Covid-19. In a video message, Mr Johnson said he wanted to “reach out” to other people forced to self-isolate. NHS Test and Trace, which is getting ever better, has achieved what so many of my political foes have wanted to achieve for many years, put me under house arrest,” he said.
  • Shadow chancellor Anneliese Dodds has urged the Government not to return England to the “shambles” seen before the current lockdown. She told the Co-operative Party’s local government conference: “It’s extraordinary that the lockdown is due to lift in just 11 days, and we still haven’t heard a peep from Government as to what comes next. We need clarity about what economic support package will go alongside different types of restrictions. We can’t go back to the shambles we had before this lockdown."