LiveCoronavirus live blog as it happened: Star Wars actor and healthy 19-year-old among latest victims of coronavirus

Follow the latest updates on the coronavirus outbreak in our live blog below

Tuesday, 31st March 2020, 8:02 am
Updated Tuesday, 31st March 2020, 6:13 pm

Scroll down and read our coronavirus live blog as it happens.

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A woman crosses London Bridge during what would usually be the busy pre-9am rush-hour (Photo: Leon Neal/Getty Images)
(Image: WHO)

We will be providing live updates until 7pm this evening.

Coronavirus live blog, March 31

Last updated: Tuesday, 31 March, 2020, 17:07

D-Day veteran, 97, dies after testing positive

Tributes have been paid to a D-Day veteran who died after testing positive for coronavirus while being treated in hospital.

Harold Pearsall, aged 97 and from Tamworth in Staffordshire, died at Sutton Coldfield's Good Hope Hospital on Sunday, the 1944 Alliance Normandy-Market Garden veterans association said.

The Royal Artillery veteran, who received the Legion D'Honneur in December 2015, landed alongside Canadian forces during the Normandy campaign.

Star Wars actor dies

Star Wars actor and film dialect coach Andrew Jack has died aged 76 as a result of coronavirus, according to his agent.

Jill McCullough said in a statement: "He died this morning of Covid-19 at St Peter's Hospital, Chertsey.

"Andrew lived on one the oldest working houseboats on the Thames, he was fiercely independent but madly in love with his wife; also a dialect coach: Gabrielle Rogers.

"Tragically she is stuck in quarantine in Australia having just flown in from NZ last week. She was unable to see or talk to him at the end of his life and there is a chance a funeral may not be held.

"Andrew was full of life - he was tall and striking with flowing white hair. You wouldn't miss him if he walked into a room. He was still working full-pelt, currently coaching on the new Batman.

"I'm receiving so many messages saying how much he will be missed. Our community has lost one of it's brightest and clearest voices."

Daily press briefing in 10

Michale Gove will be joined by Deputy chief medical officer Dr Jenny Harries NHS England national medical director Dr Stephen Powis

Michael Gove to chair press briefing

Michael Gove will chair today's daily press briefing at 5pm in place of the Prime Minister who is still self-isolating.

UK death toll rises to 1,789

19-year-old with no underlying health issues among English casualties.

A 19-year-old with no underlying health issues is among the people to have died with coronavirus in England in the past 24 hours. 

NHS England said those who died were all in hospital and their ages ranged from 19 to 98.

All but 28 of the patients had underlying health conditions. The 28 who did not were aged between 19 and 91.

England death toll rises by 367

The death toll of people with coronavirus in England has risen by 367 in a single day, according to NHS England 

Wales death toll up by 7

Dr Giri Shankar of Public Health Wales, said: "Seven further deaths have been reported to us of people who had tested positive for novel coronavirus, taking the number of deaths in Wales to 69.

"We offer our condolences to families and friends affected, and we ask those reporting on the situation to respect patient confidentiality."

Northern Ireland death toll rises by 6

The number of people who have died in Northern Ireland after contracting coronavirus has risen by six to 28, health officials said.

Millions of items of PPE delivered to NHS

Millions of items of personal protective equipment were delivered to NHS trusts on Monday, Downing Street has said, with the army helping to ensure supplies reach frontline workers.

The Prime Minister's official spokesman told a Westminster briefing on Tuesday: "Yesterday's deliveries of PPE included more than 2.5 million aprons, 870,000 eye protectors, 218,000 respiratory masks - they are FFP2 and FFP3 masks - one million surgical masks and 11 million gloves.

"The full weight of Government is behind the PPE efforts, with PPE being sent out 24 hours a day and the army helping with deliveries.

"There have been occasional issues with deliveries being received out of hours by NHS trusts but this is what we are working on to address and resolve."

Labour MP calls for further support for self-employed

Edinburgh Festival Fringe set to be cancelled

The plug is set to be pulled on the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.

Thehe door is likely to be left open for shows to be shows to be staged at short notice if restrictions are eased across in the summer, writes Brian Ferguson for the Edinburgh Evening News

PM: 'The situation will get worse before it gets better'

Boris Johnson told the Cabinet "the situation is going to get worse before it gets better - but it will get better" as senior ministers took part in the meeting by videolink.

A Downing Street spokesman said only Cabinet Secretary Sir Mark Sedwill and a small number of officials were in the Cabinet room itself, observing social distancing rules on keeping two metres apart.

Updates on the Government's coronavirus response were given by video conference by chief scientific adviser Sir Patrick Vallance and England's chief medical officer Chris Whitty.

The Downing Street spokesman said: "The PM said the rising death toll in recent days showed the vital importance of the public continuing to stick to the social distancing guidance which has been put in place by the Government, based on scientific and medical advice.

"The PM said that the situation is going to get worse before it gets better - but it will get better."

Russell Crowe encourages support for St Helens charity

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