LONDON will enter tier 3 coronavirus lockdown on Wednesday as cases spiral out of control.
A huge spike in the capital – largely driven by a rise in cases in secondary schools – has sparked “deep concern”.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan is even urging the government to consider closing schools and colleges early and reopen later in January de to the “significant” coronavirus outbreaks among 10 to 19-year-olds.
The capital and parts of Essex and Hertfordshire will plunge into the strict tier restrictions on Wednesday at one minute after midnight, forcing 1,000s of bars, pubs, cafes and restaurants to close.
They will remain pen for takeaway, delivery and click and collect services, however.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock will announce the new London tier 3 lockdown at the House of Commons any minute. You can follow his statement here, live on this page, by watching the video above.
Every day counts as the controversial five-day Christmas rule-break looms, and thousands of London households mix indoors, take publc transport and see elderly and vulnerable relatives.
Follow our coronavirus live blog below for the very latest news, reaction and updates on the lockdown plans…