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Thursday morning news briefing: Which Covid tier will you be in?

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Ending in tiers: Regional measures to be revealed

Today is the day we find out how England’s lockdown will end in tiers. Health Secretary Matt Hancock will announce which tier each local authority will fall under when the full shutdown ends on Wednesday. The vast majority of the country is expected to be placed in Tiers 2 and 3 under a tougher Covid system, but Whitehall sources said “some” areas would be in Tier 1. Liverpool is expected to become the first area to escape from the highest level of restrictions, but what about London and elsewhere? These are the five key metrics that will determine your area’s new tier. Search for confirmed Covid cases by postcode. The system has been toughened from the previous regime. What is changing – and what is not? Read what restrictions in each tier will mean for daily life.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson will say that areas in higher tiers will be able to move down the scale before Christmas if they follow the rules. A formal review of every geographical location will be carried out by Dec 16, with any changes announced on Dec 17. The reimposition of the tier system in England comes as scientists warned easing restrictions over Christmas could lead to a third wave of the pandemic and another lockdown. These are the rules for extended Christmas “bubbles”.

The road ahead: Forecast for economic recovery

The economy is expected to shrink by more than a tenth this year, but the country’s long-term prosperity is highly dependent on the trajectory of the Covid-19 pandemic, the government spending watchdog said. The Office for Budget Responsibility outlined three potential scenarios for the economy. After Chancellor Rishi Sunak warned Britain’s economic emergency “has only just begun”, Associate Editor Camilla Tominey says it was a speech of two halvesJeremy Warner believes he has found the Achilles heel in Mr Sunak’s plan. And Allister Heath concludes: Britain is facing ruin, but the deluded Tories still refuse to accept it. Feeling gloomy? Let Matt raise a smile with today’s cartoon.

Hand of God: ‘Cry-baby response was a travesty’

Diego Maradona was hailed as the “greatest of them all” as his death drew an extraordinary outpouring of emotion. For England supporters, no memory of him can be complete without recollections of the infamous “Hand of God” goal in 1986. David Miller, who covered the game as The Sunday Telegraph‘s Chief Football Correspondent, recalls watching the “travesty” of England “cry babies in confrontation with a player who ranked alongside Alfredo Di Stefano, Pele and Johan Cruyff”. In this comment pieceJason Burt says no one ever dominated a World Cup like Maradona. And see how the world’s newspapers reacted to his death.

At a glance: More coronavirus headlines

Also in the news: Today’s other headlines

Loyalty wanes | The BBC is losing the loyalty of its older, upmarket audience, a report has found, after a year in which the broadcaster concentrated its energies on wooing the young. Satisfaction levels among viewers and listeners aged 55 and above from middle class backgrounds are waning. Read more about new statistics from Ofcom.

Around the world: Trump pardons Flynn

Donald Trump last night pardoned Michael Flynn, his former national security adviser who had pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI during the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Washington Correspondent Nick Allen says the move made clear how Mr Trump would use the final days of his administration.

Donald Trump spoke to reporters in the White House, but took no questions. CREDIT: AFP

Comment and analysis

You Are Not Alone: Getting you through lockdown

  1. Meghan’s miscarriage anguish | Judith Woods on the pain so many can relate to
  2. Festive planning | How the experts are preparing for a Covid-safe Christmas
  3. Present ideas | Gallery: The most indulgent food and wine gifts for Christmas

Business and money briefing

Better Broadband campaign | The Chancellor delivered a “kick in the teeth to people living in rural areas” by dropping a pledge to connect the whole of the UK with gigabit-capable broadband by 2025, pulling it back to just 85pc. The pledge has already been watered down once.

Sport briefing

Liverpool 0 Atalanta 2 | Gian Piero Gasperini joined Diego Simeone in an elite group. They are the only managers to inflict an Anfield defeat on Jürgen Klopp in a European competition. Read our match report.

Tonight’s dinner

Salmon and spinach risotto with poached egg and herb cream | Flakes of hot smoked salmon go brilliantly with the creamy sauce. View the recipe by Diana Henry. For more ideas, try our Cookbook newsletter.

And finally… for this morning’s downtime

Royals | Versatile, flattering and low maintenance, Princess Diana’s 1980s hairstyle has the makings of the next big cut. Annabel Jones explains why the “practical haircut” is the perfect style for now.

Source: Thursday morning news briefing: Which Covid tier will you be in?

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