One-and-a-half million people in England have been identified as being extremely medically vulnerable and the government will distribute free food parcels every week to more than 50,000 who have no family or friends to help them.
The identical parcels contain essential non-perishable supplies like pasta, cereal, fruit, tea bags, potatoes and tinned goods, as well as toilet paper.
A food distribution company will deliver the packs to people's doorsteps, although in some cases local authorities, charities or emergency services may help out.
Everton in the Community, the Everton FC charity, has helped deliver the baskets.
In a tweet the race organisers aid it was "a privilege" to support Everton's Blue Family charity campaign.
RNLI 'immediately pause' lifeguard roll-out
The roll-out of lifeguard
patrols on selected beaches in the North West, which were due to begin next month, has been "immediately paused", the RNLI has said.
A spokeswoman for the charity said beaches at West
Kirby, Moreton and New Brighton were due to be
patrolled from 4 April, while in Sefton, patrols at Formby, Ainsdale and Southport were due to start on 10 April.
However, she said a decision to pause had been
taken "to ensure lifeguards adhere to the government’s
instructions to limit contact between people and encourage the public to do the
She added that the RNLI's lifeboat stations "remain on service".
Lancashire CCC chairman dies after contracting coronavirus
The budget airline, which flies from both Liverpool John Lennon and Manchester airports, said it had made the move due to the "unprecedented travel restrictions" imposed by governments globally due to the virus pandemic.
It had already cancelled most flights but had been running rescue flights to repatriate Britons stranded abroad.
The move came as regional airline Loganair, which serves the North West and the Isle of Man, said airlines were unlikely to survive without a government bailout.
PM says 20,000 former NHS staff return to fight virus
The number of people who have died with the virus in the UK has reached 1,228.
More free car parking for NHS staff in Liverpool
BBC North West News
Liverpool City Council will provide 1,300 free car spaces for NHS staff for
the next three months.
A thousand of the spaces have been allocated at the Mount Pleasant car park in
the city centre.
Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson said: “Our
NHS staff and carers everywhere are proving to be real heroes by putting their
own lives at risk every time they go to work to help those suffering from the
Bin workers in Wirral have overwhelmingly voted to go on strike, but will delay any walkout until the coronavirus crisis has passed.
About 180 workers delivered a 96% vote in favour of industrial action over pay on an 80% turnout.
Their union Unite said the dispute is a result of Biffa, the firm contracted by the council to run Wirral’s bin collections, refusing to meet their pay claim.
Last week, a spokesman for Biffa, said it was continuing to talk to "employees and their representatives and have offered a generous pay increase which is in excess of the current wage inflation indices".
Wirral Council said at the time that "in the event of any disruption to services, we will endeavour to enact our business continuity plans and advise our residents and other stakeholders well in advance".
The mandate for strike action would normally last for six months, however it can be extended with the agreement of the employer.
Unite has requested this is done given the unprecedented nature of the coronavirus crisis.
A spokesman added that the opening of gates would mean "passengers do not have to pass paper or season tickets through the barriers or present them to staff", though customers still required a ticket to travel.
Commercial and customer director Mark Powles said:
Our trains and stations remain open for business to help key workers get where they need to be across the north of England.
For those who have to make essential journeys – and for our staff who continue to work across the network – we want to make the railway as safe as possible [and] the measure we have introduced today further limit person-to-person contact.
Our ticket offices remain open to provide help and advice to passengers [but] we will only accept payment via card. Customers who want to pay by cash will be asked to use ticket machines if they are available.
Wirral Council is putting aside £100,000 to support self-employed people struggling to make ends meet amid the coronavirus crisis.
Money will be given where there is no other way for someone to pay for something fundamental to their health or wellbeing.
The £100,000 sum is a top-up on the council’s existing Local Welfare Assistance Scheme, taking its total spend to £250,000.
A key use of the additional money will be helping those worst affected by the coronavirus crisis while they wait for benefits such as Universal Credit.
Wirral Council’s cabinet member for finance, Janette Williamson, said:
It is important that we act quickly to help those, including those who are self-employed and facing very real financial difficulties.
This scheme provides a safety net when there is no alternative, and while we await further information from the government on help for [the] self-employed. We will be making the funding available immediately once applications have been approved.
The major supermarkets are searching for 35,000 additional workers, but many other firms supplying essential goods or services are also looking for extra help so they can cope with the increased demand.
Home care company Cera has just created 10,000 new jobs for people to work as part of the home carer community.
Meanwhile, chemist chain Lloyds Pharmacy is seeking 1,500 workers across the country in the next few days. And Virgin Media says it needs 500 new people at Birmingham, Sheffield, Manchester and Teesside.
Mounted police patrol the quiet streets of Liverpool
Chief Executive Trish Armstrong-Child said the decision was not "taken lightly" but it was in line with the government’s instructions and asked people to consider "other ways of speaking with your loved ones, such as by phone or video calling”.
The helpers are needed for delivering food and medicines, driving patients to appointments and phoning the isolated.
The scheme is one of a number aimed at relieving pressure on the NHS.
About 11,000 former medics have also agreed to return to the health service and more than 24,000 final year student nurses and medics will join them.
Centre for blind and partially sighted people closes
Bradbury Fields Services for Blind and Partially Sighted People in Liverpool has made the "difficult decision" to close for the "safety and welfare" of service users, staff and volunteers during the coronavirus pandemic.
All groups, classes and social gatherings to be held at the Bradbury Centre or external venues, such as swimming, gym and spa-based activities, have been cancelled for an initial one-month period.
Staff have been advised not to undertake non-essential home visits.
A telephone support service is still running and more details can be found on the Bradbury Fields website.
The centre, formerly known as the Liverpool Voluntary Society for the Blind, was established in 1857 to provide a service for blind people in their own homes.
Chief Executive Philip Longworth said:
In such challenging times, let’s all do our bit to isolate as instructed, keep safe and well and help our NHS to cope as best it can over forthcoming weeks.
Liverpool have set up a telephone service contacting vulnerable and elderly people in North Liverpool so they don't feel isolated.
The Reds are also running online programmes such as mindfulness tips, physical activity sessions, LFC quizzes and videos encouraging you to take up a new hobby.More details on the Liverpool FC website.
It was a pleasure talking to Mark. I wish him and all who are suffering due to the COVID-19 the best. Strength and courage to all. We will also win this match.
The Blue Family outreach campaign was launched by the club last week to keep contact with fans and provide support to some of the most vulnerable, socially isolated and at-risk members of the community during the coronavirus pandemic.
It is also organising food parcels, arranging breakfast packs for young children, providing mobile phone credit for people living alone, and helping with gas and electricity bills.
Funeral numbers restricted in Liverpool City Region
The numbers of mourners allowed to attend funeral services in Halton and Widnes cemeteries is now restricted, Halton Borough Council says.
From today, only 12 people will be allowed to attend funeral services within Widnes Crematorium chapel.
For burial services at all cemeteries in Halton, only six mourners will be permitted at the graveside.
A council spokesman said the changes have been made following discussions with Public Health, funeral directors and neighbouring councils and government advice on social distancing.
In Liverpool, the city council says funeral services at the city’s three public crematoria - Springwood, Anfield and Myrtle - will only be able to accommodate a maximum of 10 people at the ceremony.
The city's Register Office has also stopped conducting weddings and civil ceremonies until further notice.
Force urge people to use 101 for 'police matters only'
Merseyside Police have asked people to only call the 101 non-emergency number "when it is a police matter" after seeing an "influx" of calls that "don’t fit the criteria" since the prime minister's address to the nation last night.
In the aftermath of Boris Johnson's speech, the force received "an increasing number" of coronavirus-related calls, asking questions such as:
go out and buy the kids Easter eggs?"
I go to church to practice the organ?"
am moving house tomorrow. Can I still do this?"
"I have bought a bed on eBay. Can I go and collect it?"
Ch Supt Claire Richards said:
We understand that we are currently in new and challenging times and people have genuine worries but the force contact centre should not be used by people wanting to ask questions about Covid-19.
I would urge people to think before they pick up the phone. They could be blocking the line for someone who genuinely needs to speak to us.
A mother grieving for the death of her daughter explains how the family plans to celebrate her life.
Radio stations play You’ll Never Walk Alone in solidarity
You’ll Never Walk Alone was played simultaneously on over 180 radio stations across 30 countries in Europe, including BBC Radio One, BBC Radio Two and BBC Radio Merseyside this morning in a show of solidarity during the coronavirus crisis.
It was the idea of Dutch radio presenter Sander Hoogendoorn, to play the 1963 hit by Gerry and the Pacemakers at 08:45 (07:45 GMT) as a way "to bring people together".
The song, which feature the lyrics, "When you walk through a storm, hold your head up high, and don't be afraid of the dark" was played at across the continent and, of course, was also tweeted by Liverpool FC.
Liverpool Metro Mayor reveals plan to help local people
Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram has announced a number of initiatives to help local people during the coronavirus pandemic.
They include restrictions lifted on concessionary travel and a £65,000 fund to support community and social businesses.
He has also announced a new crowdfunding campaign to support community and voluntary organisations on the frontline of helping communities cope.
Chairing the first meeting of the Liverpool City Region Coronavirus Action Group, the mayor said he wanted to do "all that I can to help support local people, businesses and community organisations through this uncertainty".
The new initiatives are:
A crowdfunding campaign to support community and voluntary organisations helping communities cope with the spread of coronavirus
Free bus travel to and from school for the children of key workers using existing Merseytravel-funded supported bus services
Lifting the 09:30 restriction on concessionary travel for essential journeys, such as accessing designated shopping hours reserved for the elderly
A fund of £65,000 of business support for community and social businesses to help them cope
People visiting coast asked to 'stay safe' by RNLI
The RNLI has issued vital safety advice to people thinking of visiting the coast this weekend.
Although lifeboat stations and shops are closed to the public, RNLI lifeboats and stations remain fully operational.
The charity is urging the public to "stay safe and not take any unnecessary risks".
Chris Cousens, RNLI Regional Water Safety Lead, said:
Whether you’re fishing, surfing, kayaking, sailing or just going for a walk, we’re asking people to be extra responsible and to avoid taking unnecessary risks to themselves and others which could put unnecessary pressure on front line services.
As with all public places we’d encourage people to follow guidelines provided by the government to maintain a two-metre distance, follow good hygiene practices and avoid mass gatherings.
If you see someone in difficulty, or you get into difficulty yourself, you should call 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard.