Coronavirus - the latest information

Updated 28th May 2020, 18:30. For the latest medical advice, visit

On the left hand side of this page (or at the bottom, if you're on a mobile device) you can see a number of links which set out the support for businesses and individuals, as well as more information on the Coronavirus outbreak.

Latest Updates.


Meeting family and friends outdoors

18:30, 28/05/2020

At today's Coronavirus Daily Press Conference, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced new measures so people family and friends, providing they are maintaining social distancing. 

From Monday, you can meet up to six people in a public place, or in a garden, providing you are maintaining social distancing.

Retail to open throughout June

Today, the Prime Minister has set out a timetable to re-open high street shops, department stores and shopping centres throughout June once they can show customers will be kept safe. 

  • Outdoor markets and car showrooms will be able to reopen from 1 June, as soon as they are able to meet the COVID-19 secure guidelines to protect shoppers and workers. As with garden centres, the risk of transmission of the virus is lower in these outdoor and more open spaces. Car showrooms often have significant outdoor space and it is generally easier to apply social distancing.

  • All other non-essential retail including shops selling clothes, shoes, toys, furniture, books, and electronics, plus tailors, auction houses, photography studios, and indoor markets, will be expected to be able to reopen from 15 June if the Government’s five tests are met and they follow the COVID-19 secure guidelines, giving them three weeks to prepare.

NHS Test & Trace Service launched in England

09:30, 28/05/2020

From today the NHS Test and Trace Service will be active to all those who test positive for coronavirus and those they have been in close contact with (within 2m for more than 15 mins) 

Those individuals affected will be contacted by an NHS contact tracer and asked to self-isolate for 14 days. 

For more information click here

More access to testing

19:30, 18/05/2020

As of today, anybody over the age of 5 with coronavirus symptoms can now get tested.

Apply for a test

An update to coronavirus symptoms

11:18, 18/05/2020

Today, the Chief Medical Officer has updated the list of symptoms for coronavirus. 

All individuals should self-isolate if they develop a new continuous cough or fever or anosmia.

Anosmia is the loss of or a change in your normal sense of smell. It can also affect your sense of taste as the two are closely linked.

"Will Caravan & Campsites be open sooner?" Government asked

09:36, 15/05/2020

In yesterday's press conference Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps MP, and Deputy CMO Prof. Jonathan Van-Tam confirmed that caravan sites and campsites are closed and should remain closed until the scientific guidance changes.

Spending time outdoors

00:00, 13/05/2020

From today, you can now spend more time outdoors.

You can do as much exercise as you like, and go to parks and beaches to sunbathe, have a picnic, and go fishing. Outdoors sports courts can reopen, including tennis and basketball courts as well as golf courses, and you can visit a garden centre. 

You can also see one other person from another household - as long as you follow social distancing guidelines. 

These changes follow scientific advice which shows that the risk of infection is much lower outside. 

Remember to follow social distancing rules, and stay 2m apart at all times.

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme EXTENDED

15:10, 12/05.2020

Today, the Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced the extension of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme until the end of October. 

There will be no changes to the scheme until the end of July, at which point the scheme will continue, but with greater flexibility to support the transition back to work. Employers who are currently using the scheme will be able to bring furloughed workers back part-time.

The government will ask employers to start sharing, with the government, the costs of paying people's salaries. However, workers will continue to receive the same level of support they receive now - 80% of their salary, up to £2,500 per month. 

Full guidance on new measures published with FAQs

Ask the PM a question

Learning more about Coronavirus

10:37, 04/05/2020

This week, Professor Chris Whitty, the governments Chief Medical Officer, delivered a lecture at Gresham College. 

The lecture is for members of the public who want a broad overview of the virus, and provides answers to some of the more technical questions people have been asking in recent weeks. 

Click here to watch the lecture on YouTube. 

Mobile Testing Centre opens in Barnstaple

14:37, 01/05/2020

This weekend a mobile testing centre has been set up by the military in Barnstaple in the North Devon Leisure Centre Car Park

Click here to book your test if you are eligible. 

More workers eligible for Coronavirus tests

12:56, 29/04/2020

Anyone in England with coronavirus symptoms who either has to leave home to go to work, or is aged 65 can now get tested.

Click here to apply if you are eligible. 

Bounce Back Loans Announced

17:11, 27/04/2020

Today, Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced new Bounce Back Loans - a simple, quick, easy solution for those in need of smaller loans.

Businesses can apply for new Bounce Back Loans up to a maximum of £50,000, or 25% of turnover, with the government paying the interest for the first 12 months. Loans will be available from 9am next Monday.

Ask your question at the Downing Street Press Conference

11:29, 27/04/2020

Starting today, the government will take a question from one member of the pubic at each daily Downing Street Press Conference. 

Questions are chosen by an independent polling organisation, and Ministers will not see the questions beforehand. 

Support for Zoos announced by DEFRA

21:22, 21/04/2019

Today, DEFRA has announced the establishment of a Zoos Support Fund, to ensure zoos and wildlife parks get the support they need to maintain high quality animals welfare and stay afloat at a time when they would usually be open to guests.