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05 January 2021 04:30

Government Coronavirus Coronavirus

Last updated: Monday 4th January The Prime Minister will be addressing the nation tonight following a sharp rise in coronavirus cases between Christmas Day and 2nd January amid new COVID-19 strain discovery. The announcement comes after the UK's coronavirus death toll hit 75,024, with 454 of those deaths recorded yesterday, and a further 54,990 people testing positive. Currently, there are 33 per cent more COVID-19 inpatients in English hospitals than during the first peak back in April. It is likely that today's address will confirm new, tougher restrictions for England, with speculation about another national lockdown. Scotland has already issued a stay at home order, with a full national lockdown in place as of midnight tonight and schools closing until February.

Here's everything you need to know about today's coronavirus briefing. When is the coronavirus briefing time today? The address will be broadcast from 8pm today (Monday 4th January). Until the end of June, the government had been holding daily COVID-19 briefings from Downing Street, but in the time since it has only been addressing the public when there has been significant new information to report. Where can I watch the coronavirus briefing today? Boris Johnson's address will be broadcast live from Downing Street on BBC One. You can also tune into BBC One live via BBC iPlayer. With previous updates, a BBC News special has aired from shortly before the briefing on BBC One, and this is to be the case once again. The daily briefings are also usually broadcast live on the dedicated BBC News 24 channel. Channel 4's 7pm News is being extended by 30 minutes, to run until 8:30pm, to accomodate the briefing, while the BBC News at 10pm is also being extended (by five minutes) to run until 10:50pm. Who is leading today's coronavirus briefing? Prime Minister Boris Johnson will be leading today's coronavirus update, which could address speculation about a full national lockdown and potential school closures. What will be included in today's briefing? A No. 10 spokesman said of tonight's address: "The spread of the new variant of COVID-19 has led to rapidly escalating case numbers across the country. The Prime Minister is clear that further steps must now be taken to arrest this rise and to protect the NHS and save lives. "He will set those out this evening." Both Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt and leader of the opposition Keir Starmer have been calling for tougher measures including school and border closures as well as another national lockdown. The PM has been reluctant to shut schools again, but it is believed that could change today with all of England possibly going into Tier 4. Scotland's briefing earlier today saw First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announce a full national lockdown from midnight tonight, with schools set to remained closed until February – other than for key workers' children. Will Boris Johnson be at the coronavirus briefing? Yes, the Prime Minister will be leading today's address. Johnson has led several briefings since returning to work after his case of coronavirus, though Health Secretary Matt Hancock stepped in for him last month following news of the vaccine. Other ministers who have led briefings in the past include Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps and Home Secretary Priti Patel. Does Boris Johnson have coronavirus? Johnson announced he had tested positive for COVID-19 on Friday 27th March via a video on his Twitter account. Nine days later he was admitted into hospital and Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab deputised in his absence. Johnson was discharged on Sunday 12th April and returned to work on the week commencing 27th April. In November 2020, he underwent another period of self-isolation after coming into contact with someone who tested positive, but this has since come to an end. Get the latest TV and entertainment news direct to your inbox Thanks! Sign in Register Sign me up! Sign up to receive television and entertainment email newsletters from our award-winning editorial team. You can unsubscribe at any time. For more information about how we hold your personal data, please see our privacy policy. Advertisement If you're looking for more to watch, check out our TV Guide.