Coronavirus lockdown could remain in place for three months to avoid second peak
Coronavirus lockdown could remain in place for three months to avoid second peak. Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said Boris Johnson was worried about lifting the restrictions too early over fears of a second peak.
Asked if the lockdown would be wound down at the start of next month, he replied: "We said right at the beginning of this and the Prime Minister said he expected this peak to last around three months. "What's happened is kind of consistent with that." It's understood that the Prime Minister, recuperating at his official country retreat, plans only to "modify" strict rules once the disease is under control rather than lifting them fully. At a meeting with Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, who is covering in the PM's absence, and senior aides at Chequers on Friday, Mr Johnson was said to have struck a cautious note on any exit strategy. The PM's official spokesman said: "The big concern is a second peak. That is what ultimately will do the most damage to health and the most damage to the economy. If you move too quickly then the virus can begin to spread exponentially again. The public will expect us to do everything we can to stop the spread and protect life. It came as NHS England announced 429 new deaths of people who tested positive for Covid-19 - the lowest number in a fortnight. It is hoped that the figures are showing that Britain's lockdown is working and the numbers of cases and deaths is expected to soon decline.
This afternoon No10 stressed that the Government did not want to do anything which would risk a rise in cases in future. They said: "We are not going to take any steps which could lead to a second peak.
"If you move too quickly the virus could begin to spread exponentially again. "The public will expect us to do everything we can to stop the spread and protect life. "As the First Secretary of State has said, a second peak is not just damaging for health, but we would also end up in a second lockdown.
"We are taking the right decisions based on the scientific advice." Meanwhile, Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said some plans to lift some lockdown measures could be set out this week. She said earlier that their aims will be to suppress the virus while restoring some kind of normality, adding: "We will need to learn to live with this virus."