image caption“A nightmare without end,” is the headline on the front page of the Daily Mail, which joins several of Monday’s papers to lead on speculation that the four-week national lockdown in England, due to start on Thursday, could last beyond 2 December. The paper says Boris Johnson is facing a Tory “rebellion” over reports the tighter restrictions could last into spring. “The ‘lockdown cure’ is causing more harm than Covid,” former cabinet minister Esther McVey has said.
image captionThe Daily Telegraph says the PM will concede on Monday that the national lockdown could be extended beyond 2 December, the Daily Telegraph reports. He will tell the House of Commons that he will “seek to end” the measures in a month’s time, but will not rule out an extension, the paper says. It comes after scientific advisers warned the four-week lockdown will not be enough to see infections reverse unless schools are also closed down. Dominating the front page is a photo of England World Cup winner Sir Bobby Charlton, who has been diagnosed with dementia at the age of 83.
image captionCabinet ministers have told the Times that they think it would be “very difficult” to end the lockdown if deaths and hospital admissions continue to rise. “There’s a lag to these things,” the paper quotes one as saying. “The fear will be that in four weeks’ time deaths will be higher than they are now, which will give credibility to people who want to keep national measures in place.” Schools will be allowed to stay open under the new restrictions, but Sir Jeremy Farrar, director of the Wellcome Trust, said pupils and staff in secondary schools should wear face coverings while moving around or in communal areas – as is required in Scotland.
image captionThe PM is facing “fury” from Conservative MPs, the Guardian adds. Senior backbenchers will oppose the new restrictions, but the measures are likely to be passed in Parliament on Wednesday with Labour support, the paper says. Separately, food aid charities said a growing number of middle-income families are turning to food banks during the pandemic.
image captionBusiness leaders are calling for more financial support from the government to survive the new lockdown, the Financial Times reports. Dame Carolyn Fairbairn, leader of the Confederation of British Industry, called the latest restrictions a “body blow”. She said the relationship between business and Downing Street “could be a lot better”. And Helen Dickinson, head of the British Retail Consortium, said the measures would cause “untold damage to the High Street in the run-up to Christmas”.
image caption“Extended lockdown warning,” is the headline on the front of the i, as the paper says the PM will tell MPs there was “no alternative” to a second lockdown.
image caption“Lockdown Xmas fear,” the Daily Mirror says after Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove said the new four-week lockdown could be extended if cases do not fall. Meanwhile, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said the restrictions will “be longer and harder” because the Conservatives did not introduce measures sooner.
image captionMetro also leads on the news that England’s lockdown could by extended beyond the four weeks and into Christmas if cases do not fall dramatically.
image captionHowever, the Daily Express says the PM has vowed the new lockdown will end on 2 December. Citing Downing Street sources, the paper says Mr Johnson will stick to the four-week time limit before reverting to regional measures.
image captionFeaturing images of queues at stores like Ikea, the Daily Star’s headline is “Off their trollies”. The paper says the PM’s lockdown announcement has “sparked panic” with “queues, raves and bog roll bandits”.