At last some brighter news. The number of Britons who are infected with the virus is down to 22,195, a 41 per cent fall on last week. Although another 592 people have died having tested positive for Covid, this is one per cent lower than last Monday’s figure. 

And an astonishing 6.6 million Britons have now been vaccinated against coronavirus –  that’s one in ten of the UK population. This brings the proportion of Britons over the age of 80 who have had one of the Covid vaccines to 78.7 per cent.

The government – which has set a target of all four high risk groups to be vaccinated by mid-February – has now vaccinated  63 per cent of care home residents in England. But this still leaves 154,660 out of an estimated 420,000 residents waiting for their jabs. Vaccinating these high risk groups is essential as the latest ONS figures show that the median age of people dying having tested positive – or due to Covid – is still around 83 for men and 85 for women.