image captionLike many papers, the Daily Mirror carries a message of hope on its first front page of 2021. It pictures 86-year-old care home resident Nina Southern as she smiles and raises a glass of bubbly. Despite the UK still being “in the battle of our lives” with the virus, the paper highlights the “warmth and kindness” that helped people through 2020’s dark times.
image captionThe Daily Star calls 2020 “the worst year in living memory” as it tells the past 12 months: “Up yours”. It gives thanks that the year is over, and calls on the “clowns in charge” not to mess up the rollout of the vaccine. In its thought for the day, the Star says: “Dry January? You must be kidding!”
image captionThe Times leads with a New Year’s message from Boris Johnson, which it calls “upbeat”. The PM promised that the country would return to normality, the paper says, such as “going to the pub, concerts, theatres, restaurants, or simply holding hands with our loved ones”.
image captionMr Johnson has also written a separate New Year’s Day message in the Daily Telegraph, where he says there are two reasons to be hopeful for next year. The PM calls 2021 a “year of change and hope”, citing the post-Brexit trade deal and rollout of the British-made Covid vaccine. But “courage, patience and discipline” is needed to get through the next few months, he warns.
image captionThe i newspaper begins 2021 with a look at the coronavirus crisis, as GPs call for the vaccine to be rolled out 24/7 and in mass vaccination centres like football stadiums. The Army is also on standby to help deliver doses to remote areas, the paper says.
image captionThe Sun urges its readers into action, as it announces a new campaign to recruit volunteers for the vaccine rollout. The campaign – which it says has been backed by the government and NHS – is calling for 50,000 “steward volunteers” to help run pop-up medical centres.
image captionThe Daily Mail says the news that one million people in the UK have now had the Covid vaccination marked a hopeful end to the year. But it says “serious questions remain” about the race to immunise everyone else. It says 530,000 doses of the Oxford jab will be available from Monday, despite experts suggesting two million a week are needed.
image captionThe front page of the Daily Express focuses on Brexit, as the transition period ended at 23:00 GMT on New Year’s Eve and the UK began its new trading relationship with the EU. In a “historic Brexit edition”, the paper pictures the word “freedom” and a Union Jack on the iconic white cliffs of Dover.
image captionThe Guardian’s top story also focuses on Brexit. It says the moment the UK left EU rules last night was “notably low key”. From this morning, the paper says, businesses in the UK face a “dizzying new array of red tape”.