During the announcement, Boris confirmed that the last phase of lockdown would indeed be pushed back, due to the threat of the Delta variant, which was first identified in India.
“Now is the time to ease off the accelerator because by being cautious now, we have the chance in the next four weeks to save many thousands of lives by vaccinating millions more people,” he said at the press conference in Downing Street.
The extension is said to allow the Government to accelerate giving second vaccinations to those most vulnerable.
“Vaccination greatly reduces transmission and two doses provides a very high level of protection against serious illness and death, but there are still millions of younger adults who have not been vaccinated and sadly a proportion of the elderly and vulnerable may still succumb even if they have had two jabs,” he added.
The variant is said to be growing in the UK at 7% week on week and the Government fears that if restrictions were to be fully lifted next Monday, then hospitalisations could rise to the levels seen in the country’s first wave.