Covid timeline: the weeks main as much as first UK lockdown | Coronavirus

31 December 2019: China alerts the World Well being Group (WHO) to dozens of circumstances of “viral pneumonia” within the central metropolis of Wuhan.

11 January 2020: China reviews its first loss of life, a 61-year-old man in Wuhan, from the mysterious new illness. At the least seven extra sufferers are in a vital situation.

23 January: China orders a lockdown for hundreds of thousands of individuals in Wuhan and Hubei province because the loss of life toll within the nation reaches 18.

A person cross an empty freeway highway on 3 February in Wuhan, Hubei province. {Photograph}: Stringer/Getty Photos

24 January: The UK well being secretary, Matt Hancock, chairs the primary Cobra assembly on Covid. England’s chief medical officer, Prof Chris Whitty, says the danger to the UK public is low.

30 January: A Chinese language couple from Wuhan fall unwell on a visit to Italy and are confirmed because the nation’s first two circumstances. The chance degree from the virus within the UK is raised from low to average because the WHO declares a worldwide well being emergency.

31 January: Two Covid circumstances are confirmed within the UK.

2 February: The UK authorities recommends common handwashing, however the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) advises towards limiting mass gatherings

10 February: Public Well being England rolls out coronavirus assessments to 12 UK labs.

22 February: Circumstances surge in Italy, prompting lockdowns within the northern areas of Lombardy and Veneto.

Coronavirus: quarantined Italians sing from balconies to lift spirits – video
Coronavirus: quarantined Italians sing from balconies to elevate spirits – video

25 February: Sage advises that social distancing and college closures can reduce transmission by 50 to 60%.

28 February: A person being quarantined onboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan turns into the primary confirmed British loss of life from Covid.

3 March: Boris Johnson boasts of getting shaken palms “with everyone” on a latest go to to a hospital. The identical day, Sage cautions “towards greetings resembling shaking palms and hugging, given current proof concerning the significance of hand hygiene”.

'I shook hands with everybody,' says Boris Johnson weeks before coronavirus diagnosis – video
‘I shook palms with everyone,’ says Boris Johnson weeks earlier than coronavirus prognosis – video

4 March: A girl in her 70s with underlying well being points turns into the primary particular person to die with Covid within the UK. Circumstances rise above 100.

11 March: The WHO declares Covid-19 a pandemic.

17 March: Sir Patrick Vallance, the UK authorities’s chief scientific adviser, tells MPs that conserving the whole variety of Covid-19 deaths underneath 20,000 can be “a superb consequence”.

18 March: Boris Johnson declares the indefinite closure of colleges, with A-levels and GCSEs cancelled, to curb the unfold of coronavirus.

An information board displays a message asking people to ‘stay home’ in Manchester, on 27 March 2020.
An data board shows a message asking individuals to ‘keep dwelling’ in Manchester, on 27 March 2020. {Photograph}: Oli Scarff/AFP through Getty Photos

19 March: Johnson says the UK can “flip the tide” of the illness in 12 weeks and “ship coronavirus packing”.

Coronavirus: Boris Johnson says UK can 'turn the tide' within 12 weeks – video
Coronavirus: Boris Johnson says UK can ‘flip the tide’ inside 12 weeks – video

Within the following days and weeks, footage present 1000’s of vacationers ready to board flights to their dwelling nations as lockdowns are introduced.

Thousand of tourists wait to board their flights to return to their home countries at Lanzarote airport in Spain’s Canary Islands.
Thousand of vacationers wait to board their flights to return to their dwelling nations at Lanzarote airport in Spain’s Canary Islands. {Photograph}: Javier Fuentes/EPA

23 March: Boris Johnson declares the UK’s first nationwide lockdown. Folks might solely go away their houses for strictly restricted causes and the police are given powers to implement the principles. The furlough scheme launched by Rishi Sunak is broadly welcomed as an essential intervention to guard jobs throughout lockdown.

26 March: Dr Jenny Harries, the chief govt of the UK Well being and Safety Company, says testing and contact-tracing are not “applicable”. She provides that the WHO’s plea to “check, check, check” is directed at much less developed nations.

A pigeon walks through a closed and empty Greenwich Market in London on 28 April 2020.
A pigeon walks via a closed and empty Greenwich Market in London on 28 April 2020. {Photograph}: Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty Photos

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