image captionMany of Saturday’s papers lead on Office for National Statistics data that says the number of people infected with coronavirus in the UK has risen by as much as two-thirds. The i reports that the full lifting of restrictions in England, currently set for 21 June, “is likely to be delayed by a few weeks” because of concerns about variants and pressure on the NHS.
image captionThe Sun reports that the prime minister has been urged to go ahead with the planned easing of restrictions “for the sake of our boozers and footie aces”. Ahead of the European Championships, George Cohen – who was part of England’s World Cup-winning side in 1966 – tells the paper: “Our boys need those fans in pubs and stadiums.”
image captionThe Daily Telegraph reports that over-25s will be offered first doses of Covid vaccines next week, while over-40s are expected to receive their second dose within eight weeks, rather than 12. That’s amid concern the Delta variant first discovered in India “could evade the vaccine, especially after one dose”.
image captionThe Daily Mirror goes further, reporting that children “could be given Covid jabs within weeks” after the UK regulator approved the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine in children aged 12-15. It pictures a child getting a vaccine in the US.
image captionThere are calls for pupils to be vaccinated “as a matter of priority”, says the Guardian. Teaching unions and school leaders says vaccinating teenagers soon “could mean most would have received two doses by the start of the new school year”. But some scientists say it could be unethical because children are at low risk of becoming seriously ill.
image captionWhile cases may be rising, the proportion of elderly patients in hospitals is falling, according to analysis by the Times. “Patients tended to be younger and less sick than those admitted during the first of second wave,” it says – and the number of people needing intensive care has “fallen across all age groups”.
image captionThe Daily Express has a more positive spin, claiming that a “jabs blitz” will “beat it”. That’s based on comments from Health Secretary Matt Hancock, who it says has “insisted our mass inoculation programme has ‘broken the link’ between infections and the number of people going into hospital”.
image captionFinancial Times readers are met with a picture of Chancellor Rishi Sunak elbow-bumping US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen. The paper reports that the G7 countries are set to agree on a “historic plan” to change the basis of global corporate tax law. It “aims to force the biggest companies to pay more tax in countries where they do business, not only where they are headquartered”, the paper says.
image captionThe Daily Mail reports that UK Border Force picked up migrants attempting to cross the Channel in French waters and took them to Dover. It says an “urgent Home Office probe” is under way as a result. A Home Office source tells the paper “the job of Border Force is to secure the UK’s border, not to facilitate illegal entry across it”.
image captionThe Daily Star reports that the BBC One is to introduce “continuity announcers with regional accents in a bid to be more diverse and inclusive”. It has superimposed a flat cap on broadcaster Sophie Raworth to illustrate this.