Government announce three week extension to UK's lockdown

16 April 2020, 17:26 | Updated: 16 April 2020, 17:53

The Government have extended the lockdown across the UK for another three weeks
The Government have extended the lockdown across the UK for another three weeks. Picture: No.10/Getty
Alice Dear

By Alice Dear

The Government have revealed in today's press conference the UK will continue to stay in lockdown for the next three weeks.

This afternoon, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab lead an emergency Cobra committee and cabinet meeting to decide the next steps for the UK's fight against coronavirus.

In the press conference today, he revealed to the public that the lockdown will continue for another three weeks as they await the peak of the outbreak.

READ MORE: Dr Hilary warns public to not wash their cars during lockdown

Dominic Raab said that while there are indications the lockdown has been successful in slowing down the spread of the virus, it is still a mixed and inconsistent picture.

The UK will stay under lockdown for another three weeks and the Government warn relaxing social distancing rules could cause health and economic damage
The UK will stay under lockdown for another three weeks as the Government warn relaxing social distancing rules could cause health and economic damage. Picture: Sky News

Due to this, the UK will continue it's lockdown for another three weeks.

He warned that by relaxing the lockdown and social distancing rules too early, it could cause a second peak of the virus and would "undo all the process we've made".

The Foreign Secretary explained that if they were to relax the social distancing rules now, it would damage public health and the economy.

The latest figures show that lockdown has been successful in slowing down the spread of the virus
The latest figures show that lockdown has been successful in slowing down the spread of the virus. Picture: Getty

While people have asked for a final date of the UK lockdown to be revealed, the government have said it would not be responsible to pre-judge the future data.

Dominic Raab said that the government will need to know five things for definite before lockdown restrictions will be lifted.

These are:

1) That the NHS is protected amid the number of patient being admitted to hospital

2) There need to be a sustained and consistent decrease in daily deaths

3) There needs to be reliable data from SAGE that the rate of infection is decreasing consistently

4) Need to be confident that the range of operational challenges are in hand by meeting the demand of PPE necessary

5) Need to be confident that any changes will not risk a second peak in the virus

Social distancing rules will still stand in place
Social distancing rules will still stand in place. Picture: PA

This announcement comes after Wales' first minister said in a statement that Scotland, Northern Ireland and UK government agreed a three week extension on the lockdown.

Earlier in the day, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said that he believed the government knew it was too early to change the strategy.

He told BBC Breakfast: "We can see that we're reaching a peak, that is good news, but we can see that the numbers are not yet coming down, therefore we can't make a change."

READ MORE: Pensioner, 99, who beat coronavirus hailed 'inspiration' as she appears on Good Morning Britain