Coronavirus: Timeline as UK reaches 100 days in lockdown

Here is a look back at the major events that have happened since 23 March 

Rory Sullivan
Tuesday 30 June 2020 08:23 BST
What is a local lockdown and how do they work?

Today marks 100 days since Boris Johnson announced that the UK was going into lockdown.

With some restrictions already eased and others set to be relaxed soon, here is a look back at the major events that have happened since the country first shut down.

23 March: In a televised speech to the nation, the prime minister tells the public about the new rules that are to dominate their lives. People should stay at home except for limited reasons including once-daily exercise, food shopping and work if it is absolutely necessary.

All non-essential shops are told to shut, events including weddings are cancelled and gatherings of more than two people in public are prohibited. Those who did go outside were urged to keep two metres' distance from others.

25 March: On the day that Clarence House announces that Prince Charles has coronavirus and is showing "mild symptoms", sweeping emergency powers to deal with the coronavirus clear the House of Lords without amendment on their way to becoming law.

The Department for Work and Pensions says almost half a million people have applied for Universal Credit in just over a week.

26 March: Chancellor Rishi Sunak announces the furlough scheme for the self-employed, under which the government will pay workers placed on leave due to the pandemic 80 per cent of their average earnings.

As the UK's daily death toll rises over 100 for the first time, "the Clap for our Carers" campaign starts, thanking frontline NHS workers for their service through a weekly round of applause on a Thursday evening.

27 March: Coronavirus comes to the heart of government, as both Boris Johnson and health secretary Matt Hancock both test positive for the virus.

Chris Whitty, England's chief medical officer, also confirms he is displaying Covid-19 symptoms and is self-isolating at home.

29 March: Dr Jenny Harries, England's deputy chief medical officer, says that life will not return to normal for at least half a year and that lockdown will only be lifted gradually.

3 April: The Nightingale Hospital at the ExCel Centre in London opens with the capacity to hold up to 4,000 people.

Controversy later surrounds the project because of the low number of patients admitted, with some critics describing it as a "complete waste of money".

5 April: Downing Street says Mr Johnson has been taken to an undisclosed hospital for testing. The following days he is admitted to the intensive care unit as his symptoms worsen.

It will be another week before the prime minister is discharged from St Thomas' Hospital and goes to his official country residence, Chequers, to recuperate. On 27 April, he returns to work in Downing Street.

12 April: The UK's coronavirus death toll passes the 10,000 mark, with government figures at this stage only accounting for hospital fatalities.

15 April: The National Police Chiefs' Council says more that 3,200 fines have been given out for alleged breaches of lockdown between 27 March and 13 April. By comparison, Romania is reported to have issued 200,000 fines over a similar period.

16 April: Captain Tom Moore, then aged 99, completes 100 laps of his Bedfordshire garden as a fundraiser for the NHS.

He ends up raising more than £30 million, becoming a national celebrity in the process and being awarded a knighthood.

22 April: In a parliamentary first, MPs appear on videolink during Prime Minister's Questions.

23 April: Researchers at the University of Oxford begin to test a potential Covid-19 vaccine on human volunteers.

5 May: The UK has the highest declared death toll in Europe with more than 32,000 fatalities, surpassing Italy which previously had the most deaths.

6 May: Professor Neil Ferguson quits his role a scientific adviser to the government and leaves the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) after acknowledging that he broke social distancing rules. This follows the resignation of Catherine Calderwood, Scotland's chief medical officer, on 5 April for breaching restrictions by visiting her second home.

10 May: Mr Johnson unveils his new "stay alert" slogan, which replaces the "stay home" message.

Leaders of Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland refuse to change the slogan amid concerns that the new message is ambiguous.

22 May: Quarantine measures are announced requiring those entering the UK from 8 June to share contact details and then self-isolate for 14 days. Failure to comply can result in a £1,000 fine in England.

25 May: The prime minister's chief aide, Dominic Cummings, takes the unusual step of giving a press conference to defend himself over allegations that he breached lockdown restrictions by travelling to Durham. Mr Johnson refused to dismiss his adviser, despite widespread public anger over the incident.

Commentators continue to question Mr Cummings' version of events, including an Easter Sunday drive from his parents' property to Barnard Castle, which he claimed was to test his eyesight.

1 June: Children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 across England are allowed to return to school. However, the numbers that go back vary depending on classroom size.

Groups of six people can meet up outdoors, as long as they follow social distancing guidance.

9 June: Education secretary Gavin Williamson tells MPs that not all primary school students will return to the classroom before the summer, going against previous government hopes

Parents express concern about how their children will catch up academically.

10 June: Prof Ferguson tells the Science and Technology Committee that the UK coronavirus death toll would be 50 per cent lower if lockdown had been introduced a week earlier.

On the same day, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development predicts in a report that Britain's economy will suffer the most of any country in the developed world.

13 June: "Support bubbles" are introduced, allowing those in single adult households to stay overnight at another home.

15 June: Non-essential shops reopen in England, as do zoos, safari parks and places of worship for private prayer. Face masks must be worn on public transport in England from this date.

17 June: The Premier League returns to action behind closed doors. Liverpool are later crowned champions of the top flight for the first time in 30 years.

18 June: The government decides to perform an embarrassing U-turn over its tracing app and to work with tech giants Apple and Google. The app is predicted to be ready some time in the autumn or winter, not mid-May as initially promised.

23 June: The prime minister announces in the last government daily coronavirus briefing that social distancing rules will be relaxed to a "one-metre plus" rule and spaces like pubs, cinemas and restaurants will reopen from 4 July.

26 June: As thousands of people flock to beaches during the heatwave, Mr Johnson warns of "serious spike" in infections if people are "taking liberties".

Additional reporting from PA

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