Coronavirus UK: What time is Boris Johnson’s press conference and what is he expected to say?

20 October 2020, 13:20

Boris Johnson will speak at a press conference later
Boris Johnson will speak at a press conference later. Picture: PA

By Asher McShane

Boris Johnson is to update the nation on the UK's coronavirus fight amid a storm over parts of England facing the toughest Tier 3 lockdown restrictions.

A midday deadline for an agreement to be reached for Greater Manchester expired today with the region now facing the prospect of being put into tier three.

Read more: Midday deadline expires with Greater Manchester now facing Tier 3

What time is Boris Johnson's press conference later?

Boris Johnson will hold a press conference at 5pm, with Stephen Powis Medical Director for NHS England and Jonathan Van Tam, the Deputy Chief Medical Officer.

What is Boris Johnson expected to say?

Depending on what happens in ongoing talks with the midday deadline passing, Boris Johnson is likely to impose Tier 3 rules for Greater Manchester and possibly other parts of England.

Frantic talks between Government and local leaders are understood to be ongoing, despite the deadline passing. Ministers are said to have offered £22 million to the region but local leaders want £75m.

The Prime Minister could announce at 5pm that a funding deal has been reached to support the region through Tier three.

Andy Burnham admitted today he will have to obey the law if Boris Johnson forces the issue and that he will instruct the public to obey the rules as well.

The Prime Minister's official spokesman said talks had continued on Tuesday morning at official level ahead of the Government's midday deadline for an agreement on the introduction of Tier 3 controls in the region.

Mr Johnson has also spoken directly to Mr Burnham following the passing of the deadline, No10 said.

There was no confirmation of any resolution or a deal from Downing Street, paving the way for Boris Johnson to formally impose the strictest rules this afternoon.