image captionThe prime minister is considering closing pubs and restaurants in areas of England worst affected by coronavirus within days, according to the Daily Telegraph, as infection rates “spiral out of control”. The paper says it comes as Labour’s opposition to the government’s strategy grows, with party leader Sir Keir Starmer demanding to see the “scientific basis” for the current 22:00 curfew on pubs.
image captionThe Guardian says the measures would affect large areas of the north of England. The paper reports that ministers will meet on Thursday to try to come to a resolution – along with local leaders – on which restrictions should be imposed. It comes after Scotland announced new restrictions for pubs and restaurants.
image captionHowever, the Times says the proposals have already been signed off by the prime minister himself and will be introduced on Monday. Mr Johnson is also said to have approved financial support for affected areas and a simplified system of restrictions in England.
image caption“Pub chaos” is the front-page headline of the Daily Star, which features an image of Mel Gibson as William Wallace in the film Braveheart.
image captionThe i says No 10 hopes to unveil its financial support for local businesses in areas facing greater restrictions later this week. It follows “wrangling” with the Treasury over the details of the policy.
image captionWith “drastic” new measures looming, Health Secretary Matt Hancock has urged people to “stick with it”. He acknowledged the “major sacrifices” of households but warned: “We must not let up.”
image captionThe Metro leads on Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer’s warning that local lockdowns are not working, after infection rates were found to be “soaring” in 19 out of 20 areas where extra restrictions were imposed. The paper cites analysis by the party, which found towns and cities had seen cases “rocket” since measures were introduced on 30 July.
image captionThe Daily Mirror leads on the same story. The paper quotes Sir Keir as telling Mr Johnson: “This is getting ridiculous.”
image captionElsewhere, ministers are said by the Daily Mail to be under “intense pressure” to rethink their coronavirus strategy after new research cast “fresh doubt” over Covid restrictions. An Edinburgh University study suggests strict lockdowns – particularly those curbing activities of the young – were unlikely to cut deaths and could end up prolonging the pandemic, the paper says.
There is plenty of coverage in the papers of the government’s discussions on whether to introduce further coronavirus restrictions in England.
The Daily Telegraph says Boris Johnson is considering shutting pubs and restaurants in Covid-19 hotspots within days – but he may need to abandon the 22:00 closing time in the rest of the country to win support from Labour and Conservative rebels for the plans.
Writing in the paper, Camilla Tominey draws attention to Sir Keir Starmer’s combative performance at Prime Minister’s Questions which, she says, when combined with a growing rebellion on the Tory backbenches, has left Downing Street “frantically working on a compromise”.
The Times claims Mr Johnson originally wanted to announce the new tiered system for local measures today, but was forced to delay the announcement because of opposition from members of his cabinet.
The paper’s editorial urges him to consider easing restrictions rather than extending them to protect the lives of people suffering from non-Covid diseases.
The editorial in the Daily Express asks the prime minister to lead the country in “an open and honest debate on what sacrifices we are prepared to make,” while Leo McKinstry urges Mr Johnson to channel the spirit of his hero, Winston Churchill, to win the war against the virus.
image captionThere is plenty of coverage in the papers given to the government’s discussions on whether to introduce further coronavirus restrictions in England
The Daily Mail’s front page focuses on a study that claims social distancing and the closure of schools may cause more deaths in the long term, despite protecting the NHS.
The article is accompanied by pictures of the prime minister and his two most senior scientific and medical advisers, Prof Chris Whitty and Sir Patrick Vallance, mimicking the Three Wise Monkeys, alongside the headline “When will they listen?”
Reflecting on the University of Edinburgh study, the Daily Telegraph’s science editor, Sarah Knapton, accuses ministers of implementing a strict lockdown too quickly in March.
She writes that the findings show that doing so “not just decimated the economy, but may cost more lives in the long term.”
The Times says delays in the printing process of Venezuela’s largest ever denomination of bank note has meant it will only be worth around 18p by the time it enters circulation.
Hyperinflation in the South American country has put the value of the bolivar into freefall, with inflation currently standing at around 2,400%.
The paper reports that a shortage of ink and power cuts caused the new 100,000 bolivar note’s roll-out to be pushed back.
The Daily Mail reports on the development of a new range of sweets by a British inventor, which experts hope will revolutionise the care of dementia patients.
The multicoloured Jelly Drops are designed to keep people in the advanced stages of the condition hydrated, with each packet of the sugar-free snack containing the equivalent of 300 millilitres of water.
The inventor, Lewis Hornby, told the paper he was inspired to develop the sweets when he discovered that dehydration was a common issue for people with dementia, as they often forget or are unable to drink without assistance.
And finally, so-called de-cluttering has become hugely popular in recent years, in part because of the Japanese tidying guru Marie Kondo.
But a story that features in a number of this morning’s papers sounds a note of caution for anybody thinking of throwing out their possessions.
The Daily Star reports on Ramann Shukla’s estate, which took eight men six weeks to clear from his three-bedroom house in Nottingham after his sudden death.
It’s now been valued at £4m.
The collection includes a signed copy of the Beatles album A Hard Day’s Night, a huge collection of vintage radios and 6,000 rare comics.
The items will go up for auction next week.