Ian Payne 4am - 7am
No new Covid deaths reported in England for first time since July
10 May 2021, 20:51 | Updated: 10 May 2021, 21:18
No new Covid deaths have been reported today in England for the first time since July, the latest figures show.
Zero deaths were also announced in Scotland and Northern Ireland on Monday, while four coronavirus-related deaths were reported in Wales.
It comes as the UK's Covid-19 alert level was lowered from four to three, meaning that although the virus is still in general circulation, transmission is no longer "high" or "rising exponentially".
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has also announced the next phase of lockdown easing can go ahead in England.
READ MORE: Covid alert level lowered from four to three
He said during Monday’s Downing Street press conference: "With deaths and hospitalisations at their lowest level since last July and the UK's four chief medical officers today agreeing a reduction in the alert level, the data now support moving to step three in England from next Monday, May 17."
The total number of people to have died in the UK within 28 days of testing positive for Covid now stands at 127,609, according to government figures.
However separate figures published by the UK's statistics agencies show there have been 152,000 deaths registered in the UK where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate.
As of 9am on Monday, there have also been a further 2,357 lab-confirmed cases in the UK.
Meanwhile, government data up to May 9 shows that 100,626 more first doses and 187,171 more second doses of the vaccine have been given.
A total of 35,472,295 first doses and 17,856,550 second doses have now been administered.
Earlier, in a joint statement, the UK Chief Medical Officers and NHS England National Medical Director said: “Following advice from the Joint Biosecurity Centre and in the light of the most recent data, the UK Chief Medical Officers and NHS England National Medical Director agree that the UK alert level should move from level 4 to level 3.
“Thanks to the efforts of the UK public in social distancing and the impact we are starting to see from the vaccination programme, case numbers, deaths and Covid hospital pressures have fallen consistently.
"However Covid is still circulating with people catching and spreading the virus every day so we all need to continue to be vigilant.
"This remains a major pandemic globally.
"It is very important that we all continue to follow the guidance closely and everyone gets both doses of the vaccine when they are offered it."
From May 17, revellers will be able to enjoy food and drink inside with the reopening of indoor hospitality, with indoor mixing and overnight stays in groups of up to six people or two households resuming.
Leisure venues such as cinemas, museums and children's play areas, will also reopen.
Hugging loved ones from different households is to be allowed again however people are being urged to remain cautious about the risks of coronavirus transmission.
Mr Johnson warned: "This doesn't mean that we can suddenly throw caution to the winds. We all know that close contacts such as hugging is a direct way of transmitting this disease.
"So I urge you to think about the vulnerability of your loved ones."