Brief. Me Better Faster June 14, 2021 1:52 pm
LIVE NEWS TODAY
The further lifting of lockdown restrictions on Monday is covered in several papers, amid concerns over the Indian coronavirus variant.
Also covered, is the news royal aides want Prince Harry and Meghan Markle to give up their royal titles following Harry’s recent appearance on a podcast.
PM Boris Johnson ‘must think again on plans to relax COVID rules’
The Observer says PM Boris Johnson is under pressure to reconsider the relaxation of measures due to the threat of the variant. There are fears of a surge – particularly in young adults who have not been vaccinated – the paper adds.
Sharing the front page is a picture of nurses treating a baby in Gaza following an Israeli airstrike on a refugee camp. Among the casualties were eight young cousins who had gathered to celebrate Eid with their mothers, the paper says.
Push for one million jabs a day to save summer
Ministers have told MPs the daily doses can be “safely” upped from 500,000 to 800,000 within the next two weeks, using a stockpile of 3.2 million doses in England.
The paper says government sources hope this could then be increased to the one million mark.
Royal aides want Harry and Meghan to give up their titles
Elsewhere, the paper says door-to-door coronavirus “hit squads” will go to Bolton and Blackburn to focus on areas that have the greatest vaccine hesitancy. The Indian variant is prevalent in these areas, according to the paper, and reports that ministers are cautiously optimistic such targeted jabs could stem the surge of the variant.
King Charles to open palaces for the people
The Sunday Times leads with the Prince of Wales planning to transform palaces from “private spaces to public places.” Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, Balmoral, Sandringham and Clarence House will be open more extensively for longer periods, the paper adds, giving the public greater access to these historic sites.
We can’t afford to panic
The Sunday Express says senior MPs have urged PM Boris Johnson not to “panic” over the Indian variant – to “believe in the vaccinations programme” and stick to the roadmap. The paper adds, vaccinations are soon to be available to the over-35s.
Covid-19 variant – ‘Will he ever learn?’
“Will he ever learn?” is the question for the prime minister from the Sunday People amid concern about the Indian variant.
The paper says families of Covid-19 victims have accused the PM of “repeating past mistakes” because he failed to restrict travel from India in early April.
The Sunday Times says around 20,000 people who could have been infected were allowed to enter Britain from India in the time before the travel ban was introduced.
A source says the delay was because PM Boris Johnson did not want to offend India’s PM Modi, with the UK seeking a post-Brexit trade deal. A claim Downing Street has denied.
The Observer says Professor Kit Yates has said a two-week delay to the relaxing of rules would make a “huge difference” as it would allow more people to be vaccinated.
But the Sunday Express says the PM should “stick to his plan” – saying we cannot assume variants are going to have a “dramatic effect.”
‘Stripped of titles’
The Mail on Sunday’s front splash leads on royal aides telling the paper they want Harry and Meghan to give up their titles. Senior aides told the paper there is a growing sense of “bewilderment and betrayal” over the couple’s continued attacks on the royals.
The Sunday Telegraph says Oliver Dowden wants voters from the “red wall” seats – won by the Tories in the last election – to replace people from “metropolitan bubbles” on the boards of Britain’s museums.
Covid: A tenth of Britain’s restaurants lost during pandemic – BBC Business
Debenhams’ remaining stores to close for the final time as COVID shutdown ends more than 240 years of retail history – Sky Business
‘Overly cautious’ travel rules risk 1.5m jobs, airport bosses say – CityAM
YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED
A spat over Covid vaccine doses has erupted between the European Union and the UK threatens to have far reaching implications over coronavirus jab disruption.
Brussels demanded access to AstraZeneca vaccines manufactured in UK plants to make up for a shortfall after the pharmaceutical giant said it would have to cut the amount of doses delivered to the bloc by the end of March.
What do we know about the dispute? And what potential implications could the rumbling dispute have on future Covid vaccine rollouts? – (ITV)
Recent and upcoming changes
Restrictions are easing across the UK.
Step 1 of the roadmap out of lockdown has begun. Shielding ends on 31 March.
People will be asked to ‘Stay Local’ from 2 April. A timetable for further lockdown easing from 5 April is on GOV.SCOT.
The stay at home restriction was lifted on 13 March. Read about the rules on GOV.WALES.
In Northern Ireland
The next review will happen on or before 15 April. You can read the guidance on current restrictions on nidirect.
latest Covid-19 news
For the latest Covid-19 news visit the UK governement website