What time is Boris Johnson's speech today? Here's when the PM is giving the latest coronavirus update

·3-min read
The Prime Minister faces rebellion from inside his own party (Andrew Parsons / No10 Downing Street)
The Prime Minister faces rebellion from inside his own party (Andrew Parsons / No10 Downing Street)

Boris Johnson will lead a Covid-19 briefing from Downing Street this evening after the UK recorded the highest number of daily coronavirus cases since the outbreak began.

The Prime Minister will be joined at the press conference by chief medical officer for England, professor Chris Whitty, and chief scientific adviser, Sir Patrick Vallance.

This will be the 100th coronavirus briefing since the pandemic hit the UK.

The briefing comes after a surge in new coronavirus cases . As of 9am on Tuesday, there had been a further 7,143 lab-confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK and a further 71 people had died. This brings the UK's official death total to 42,072 – although separate figures published by the UK’s statistics agencies show Covid-19 was mentioned on nearly nearly 57,900 death certificates.

The Prime Minister also faces rebellion from within his own party over the new restrictions. With MPs set to vote on the renewal of the Coronavirus Act’s powers in the Commons on Wednesday, more than 50 Tories have backed an amendment calling for Parliament to be given a greater say over the use of measures to curb people’s freedoms. Wednesday’s vote will see MPs decide whether to renew the provisions of the emergency legislation in the Coronavirus Act.

As the case for further lockdown restrictions builds, here's what you need to know about the press conference today.

This will be the 100th daily briefingJeremy Selwyn
This will be the 100th daily briefingJeremy Selwyn

What time is the press conference?

The Prime Minister will host the press conference from Downing Street today (Wednesday, September 30). A spokesperson confirmed the announcement will take place at 5pm this evening.

Where can I watch the press conference?

You can follow the Prime Minister’s speech as it happens on the Standard’s live blog, where our reporters will provide key updates from the speech, as well as analysis.

If you’d like to watch it live, the speech will be broadcast on the BBC News Channel and Sky News. Radio stations such as LBC and BBC Radio 5 Live will also likely carry the speech live.

Why is there a press conference?

There are calls for “effective” public health messaging after Mr Johnson had to apologise over confusion about the lockdown measures in north-east England.

Mr Johnson stumbled over his explanation of the ban on households mixing, saying that he “misspoke”.

With the rules not published until late on Tuesday night, ministers were quizzed about whether they would apply in settings such as beer gardens.

In response to questions, Mr Johnson said: “In the North East and other areas where extra-tight measures have been brought in, you should follow the guidance of local authorities but it is six in a home, six in hospitality but, as I understand it, not six outside.”

But he later tweeted: “Apologies, I misspoke today. In the North East, new rules mean you cannot meet people from different households in social settings indoors, including in pubs, restaurants and your home. You should also avoid socialising with other households outside.”

What will be announced at the press conference?

The daily briefings came to an end on June 23 with the public told that briefings would only take place in future to “coincide with significant announcements”.

Since then there have been seven coronavirus briefings, with Wednesday’s being the eighth since the daily briefings stopped.

The last time the three men appeared together at the podiums was September 9 when Mr Johnson outlined the “rule of six” and urged people to limit their social contact “as much as possible”.

But three weeks on, the number of cases has risen, and The Times is reporting that a final decision will come on Wednesday on whether Merseyside will join the North East with tougher lockdown measures banning households mixing indoors.

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