UPDATES on the country's response to the coronavirus pandemic are set to continue into the winter months.

With most restrictions now eased, No10 is expected to tell the public how they plan to keep the virus at bay.

When is the next coronavirus announcement?

Although Downing Street is yet to confirm an exact date and time, the Prime Minister is expected to outline his Covid winter plan this week (September 13).

He is expected to say that vaccines will continue to be the first line of defence over the autumn and winter – a high-risk time for Covid as other respiratory illnesses circulate.

Furthermore, powers held to shut down swathes of the economy and impose limits on gatherings and events will be repealed.

Boris Johnson said: "Thanks to the efforts of the public, the NHS and our phenomenal vaccination programme, we reached Step 4 in our Roadmap and life has returned to a sense of normality.

"These extraordinary times required necessary but intrusive measures. But I’m determined to get of rid of any powers we no longer need because of our vaccine defences.

"I will set out the next phase in our Covid response shortly."

It will be the first major covid-19 press conference since the major relaxation of restrictions seen on Freedom Day on June 19.

When did the Government's Covid updates start?

The very first UK Downing Street Covid-19 press conference was held on Monday, March 16, 2020.

Boris Johnson appeared with England's chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty, and the Government's chief scientific adviser Sir Patrick Vallance.

Then a week later on the March 23, the PM used the briefing to announce that the country would be going into lockdown.

Initially they were held on week days with those in attendance giving updates on the figures and insight and explanations for the government's strategy as well as the spread of the virus.

As the crisis deepened updates at the weekend were then introduced but were dropped in May 2020, due to “significantly lower viewing figures” as the effects of the pandemic eased.

On June 23, 2020, the daily briefings were dropped after Mr Johnson announced a number of lockdown measures were easing with the daily updates replaced by ad hoc announcements which would take place when needed.

Who leads the press conferences?

The coronavirus announcements are usually held by Prime Minister Boris Johnson or a senior member of his Cabinet, such as Health Secretary Hancock or Home Secretary Priti Patel.

Johnson and Hancock have been the most regular leaders of the briefings since they returned at the start of 2021.

The Home Secretary has also led a number of updates.

The government figure is accompanied by health or science experts.

Key figures include:

  • Boris Johnson
  • Matt Hancock
  • Priti Patel
  • Grant Shapps
  • Prof Chris Whitty
  •  Sir Patrick Vallance

What is the UK's roadmap out of lockdown?

The Prime Minister created a four stage roadmap to take England out of lockdown.

Johnson said the new measures would "cautiously but irreversibly" take the nation out of restrictions which came into force on January 5, 2021.

April 12

In the first major easing of restrictions, non-essential shops and hairdressers reopened on April 12.

From this date, Brits were permitted to enjoy a drink in pub beer gardens once again as long as they stay seated.

Rules about ordering food and a 10pm curfew from previous lockdowns did not return.

At this time pubs and restaurants could offer outdoor seating with table service, but social distancing with the Rule of Six in place.

Hairdressers also reopened.

May 17

May 17 marked the lifting of many indoor restrictions.

Pubs, cinemas and indoor bingo halls reopened their doors to allow customers inside and fans are able to watch live sport and music at stadiums and arenas, with social distancing.

Outdoor stadiums will be limited to 25 per cent capacity up to 10,000 fans.

Smaller outdoor events will be limited to 50 per cent capacity up to 4,000 fans and indoor events 50 per cent up to 1,000 people.

Wembley Stadium is scheduled to host the semi-finals and final of the delayed Euro 2020 in July.

The number of attendees allowed at weddings rose to 30.

Two households were allowed to go away together and stay overnight, but were urged to try to stick to social distancing.

However a traffic light system grading countries on their level of infection danger was confirmed.

Only holidaymakers heading to green countries with good vaccine roll-outs and low Covid rates were allowed to dodge quarantine.

July 19

The final easing of social restrictions came into play on July 19.

It saw the ending of all legal limits on social contact as well as the reopening of all remaining premises such as nightclubs and larger events.

Laws in England requiring masks to be worn in shops and other indoor settings were lifted.

Capacity limits in shops, bars and restaurants, and rules limiting the number of people who can socialise together were also lifted.

Where can I watch the speeches live?

The Downing Street conference usually takes place from 5pm and is broadcast through various formats.

Viewers can watch the presser on the Sun's official YouTube account.

In addition, our live coronavirus blog provides real time updates and reports as details emerge.

Both the BBC and Sky News also follow the action live.

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