Matt Hancock to hold No10 press conference at 5pm TODAY as tougher lockdown looms

Last night he said: “Since the historic day the first vaccine was approved, the NHS has made fantastic strides in offering the vaccine to as many at risk people as possible and at record pace.

“We have worked closely with experts across the NHS, local governments and the armed forces to put in place full and thorough preparations for this rollout – this is the biggest vaccination programme in British history.

“From today, the full scale of our plans will be published, so the public can be assured of the time, effort and resources that have gone and will go into ensuring we protect the British people from the scourge of this virus.

Meanwhile, ministers have been considering tougher lockdown restrictions – including a potential ban on exercising with one person outside of your household and having to wear face coverings in offices.

Boris Johnson held a meeting with Cabinet yesterday evening to discuss whether the current rules are halting the spiralling infection rates.

But it’s believed that tighter rules and restrictions will come into place in a bid to control the virus.

Ministers are aiming to make sure people “aren’t using their own creativeness to interpret the rules how they want to” just one week after the lockdown was announced.

And scientists have already warned that the current measures don’t go far enough to stop cases exploding and are instead calling for a “total clampdown”.

They believe nurseries should be closed as well as places of worship with it made compulsory to wear face masks in public.

London mayor Sadiq Khan has also led calls for face coverings to be worn outside the home as he declared a major incident in the capital.

And Sir Keir Starmer yesterday said nurseries “probably should be closed”.

The Labour leader told the BBC: “I think there is a case for looking at nursery schools, we’re talking to the scientists about that.

“I think people are surprised that primary schools were closed but nurseries aren’t.”

This comes after parks and beachfronts across the country were filled to the brim over the weekend as people took advantage of their daily exercise outdoors.

Hyde Park in London was heaving with families on their daily walks, while Covid marshals patrolled along Brighton’s seafront.

People wrapped up in hats and scarves, braving the winter weather to have their Sunday stroll on the first weekend of the new lockdown.

Cops have also warned that they would be handing out more fines during the new lockdown – to make sure Brits comply with the rules.

Under the measures, rule breakers will be hit with a £200 fine for a first offence which will then double to £400 for a second.

The penalties could continue to double to as much as £6,400 if Brits continue to ignore life-saving restrictions.

Yesterday, Matt Hancock refused to speculate on whether the lockdown rulescould be strengthened amid claims from scientists they are “too lax” in stopping the spread.

Asked about the prospect of tighter restrictions, he said: “I don’t want to speculate because the most important message is not whether the Government will further strengthen the rules.