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County will bounce back after virus, say tourism bosses

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Tourism bosses in Lincolnshire have been assured that the sector will “bounce back” from the Coronavirus crisis.

Skegness Pier
PA Media

Officials from Visit Lincoln, Lincolnshire County Council and accountants Duncan and Toplis, said billions of pounds could be “wiped out” as a result of the virus.

But Councillor Colin Davie, executive member for economy and place at the county council, said there was “no reason” why the county would not return better from the pandemic.

In Greater Lincolnshire, tourism generated an estimated £2.4 billion last year with 2.1 million people visiting the county in the summer and spring.

The lockdown restrictions will have a knock-on effect on overall visitor numbers and income for next year as a result of resorts shutting down.

But Charlotte Goy, interim Chief Executive of Visit Lincoln, said, while sectors such as hospitality and tourism have been the hardest hit, things will get better.

While business owners might be firefighting right now, I’d urge them to also think about the future and plan for their recovery. Lincolnshire has several attributes which should mean we’re well placed to capitalise when people start to go on holiday again when restrictions lift."

Charlotte GoyInterim Chief Executive of Visit Lincoln

Lincolnshire's hospitals coping ahead of 'surge'

Hospital bosses in Lincolnshire say the system is coping with the current coronavirus pandemic but they're expecting a "surge" in the coming weeks.

Lincoln County Hospital
Google

This morning there were 78 confirmed cases in the county.

The Chief Executive of the United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust, Andrew Morgan, says protective equipment is getting through to the frontline.

Latest coronavirus figures for Lincolnshire

A total of 78 people have tested positive for Covid-19 in Lincolnshire, according to the county's Director of Public Health.

Pilgrim Hospital Boston
Google

Professor Derek Ward confirmed the latest figures speaking on BBC Radio Lincolnshire earlier this morning.

To date, six people have died in the county after testing positive for the virus.

However he said both figures are expected to rise in the coming days.

As of 09:00 on Monday a total of 134,946 people have been tested in the UK, of which 112,805 were confirmed negative and 22,141 were confirmed positive.

As of 29 March, 1,408 patients in the UK who tested positive for coronavirus have died.

Lincolnshire's weather

It should be a fine day in Lincolnshire. Here's the latest forecast.....

Weather Forecast
BBC

Police to stop front desk services at majority of stations

Lincolnshire Police is to close the front desks at all but two of its police stations in a bid to reduce social contact.

Police station sign
Getty Images

From Thursday the front counter service will be stopped until further notice at all stations except South Park, in Lincoln, and Boston.

A police spokesperson said: "These are difficult decisions in difficult times but made with the upmost concern for the safety of the public and our staff whilst making sure we continue to deliver our service in the most effective way.

"With two stations open, it means that there is an opportunity to attend if you absolutely need to."

Police to take 'common sense' approach over new powers

Lincolnshire Police says it will use "common sense and discretion" when using new policing powers introduced to enforce strict guidelines aimed at reducing the spread of coronavirus.

ACC Kerrin Wilson at Boston Market
Lincolnshire Police

Police have been granted new dispersal powers to break up groups of two or more people, unless from the same household, with officers able to issue £60 fines to anyone who fails to comply.

The force says officers will only resort to taking action after explaining the risks to people and encouraging them to comply with government advice.

It says: "Anyone who refuses to comply will be acting unlawfully. This may result in being arrested, where it is deemed proportionate and necessary. However, in the first instance, police will always apply their common sense and discretion."

Meanwhile over the weekend, Assistant Chief Constable Kerrin Wilson took to the streets where she found many people were following the advice, but also some that were not.

She said: "If people continue to go about their lives and ignore the national pandemic, they are putting not only themselves at risk, but also those around them.

"We don’t want to have to issue any fines or make arrests – we will only do this when there is no other option. We won’t be setting up road blocks and stopping people in their vehicles unless there is a clear policing reason for us to do so."

County records five more deaths linked to coronavirus

Health bosses in Lincolnshire have confirmed five more patients have died in the county after testing positive for coronavirus.

Derek Ward
BBC

According to NHS England three patients died while being cared for by the United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust died and two patients died in the care of Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust.

The total number of confirmed deaths in the county of patients diagnosed with COVID-19 is six.

The first person to die in Lincolnshire was a woman in her 80s who had underlying health problems.

Professor Derek Ward, Director of Public Health in Lincolnshire, said: "As of yesterday we had 72 confirmed cases in the county and I'm very sorry to say we've now had six deaths of people who were confirmed to have the virus.

"Their families have been informed and our thoughts and condolences are with them at this difficult and distressing time."

Mr Ward said Lincolnshire is still a couple of weeks behind the rest of the country, but the numbers are "doubling every three to four days".

Police appalled by 'disgusting' spitting incident

Humberside Police said it was appalled by the "disgusting behaviour" of a member of the public who spat on a patrol car which was responding to an incident on Saturday.

The car had to be taken out of service for a deep clean, officers said.

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Health chief warns over coronavirus complacency

David McKenna

Reporter, BBC News Online

Man out for a walk in Skegness
John Byford

The director of public health in Lincolnshire is warning people not to let their guard down, despite the relatively low number of deaths in the county.

To date, there have been four confirmed deaths linked to coronavirus, and 53 cases.

With Lincolnshire being such a large, dispersed rural population that was quite likely to happen – but we are just behind the curve, I don’t think we are dodging it. I do not want anybody to get complacent and think it’s not an issue.

Derek WardDirector of public health in Lincolnshire

Woman 'fined' in fake police stop checks

Humberside Police has said it isn't operating vehicle stop checks after a woman was pulled over and 'fined' by two men appearing to be officials.

A police officer
PA Media

The woman was flagged down by two men, who were both dressed in black zip up hoodies, carrying walkie talkies and wearing ear pieces.

They asked the woman where she was going and if the journey was essential before demanding she paid a £60 'fine'.

The woman refused and two men got back into their car and drove away.

It happened on the Leven bypass near Brandesburton, East Yorkshire at about 09:25 this morning.

Police say they're not routinely stopping any vehicles and that we do not have any stop check areas in place.

Woman in her 80s is first coronavirus death in county

NHS England has confirmed the first death in Lincolnshire linked to the coronavirus.

ULHT logo
United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust

The patient was a woman in her 80s and had underlying health conditions.

A spokesperson for United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust said: “Sadly we can confirm that a woman who was being cared for at one of our hospitals, and had tested positive for COVID-19, has died.

“The patient, who passed away yesterday, was in her 80s and had underlying health conditions.

“Her family has been informed and our thoughts and condolences are with them at this difficult and distressing time.”

The current death toll in England currently stands at 689.

Councils 'asked to house homeless amid virus outbreak'

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Councils in Greater Lincolnshire have been asked by the government to house all people sleeping rough by the weekend, a homeless charity has said.

Homeless person
Getty Images

National organisation Crisis says the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government has sent a letter to homelessness managers and rough sleeping co-ordinators across the country.

The letter is reported to have asked for councils to "ensure that everybody is inside and safe by this weekend".

Crisis chief executive Jon Sparkes called the move a “landmark moment – and the right thing to do.”

“Questions remain about how local councils will be supported to do this, and whether additional funding, or assistance securing hotel rooms, will be made available. We also need to see a package of support so that, when the outbreak subsides, the outcome is not that people return to the streets,” he said.

“The Government has committed to ending rough sleeping by 2025 – this proves it can be done in 2020 if we make it the priority it deserves to be.”

Coronavirus: Coastguard warns beachgoers to stay at home

Lifeguards will not be be manning beaches and people should stay away to help save lives amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Coastguard has warned.

Beach
PA Media

Much of the UK has enjoyed several days of bright sunshine and fine weather at the weekend would usually see crowds flock to seaside resorts.

However, the Coastguard said everyone must follow the government's "very simple" rules and stay at home.

It said it had still been getting calls reporting groups of people on beaches.

Thousands of beachgoers defied the government's social distancing advice last week in scenes that prompted frustration from officials.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced stringent new rules on Monday evening meaning people should only leave their homes for limited purposes.

They included being allowed to take daily exercise but the Coastguard said beaches should only be used by those who lived close to them.

Coronavirus: Dog shelters struggle as lockdown dries up funds

Dog shelters are facing closure because of the lockdown to tackle the coronavirus outbreak.

Dog
LIVING PORTRAITS/JERRY GREEN DOG RESCUE

Animal charities have had to shut fundraising shops and close centres to the public as well as put adoptions on hold.

The RSPCA's York branch has an emergency appeal to raise its £60,000 monthly cost to keep from closing down.

It said it lost 90% of its income in the past week as the government asked people to stay at home.

Peter Gorbert, the RSPCA branch manager for York, said: "It's difficult knowing that we have animals that could be going home but can't because of the lockdown."

The charity's Halifax branch is running a "virtual pet show" on Facebook after the coronavirus crisis put its annual events in doubt.

Jerry Green Dog Rescue, which operates across Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire and Yorkshire, is also appealing for funds and is asking people to donate unwanted items through the Vintage Giving website.

Network Rail asks former signallers to return to railways

Retired rail workers are being asked to consider coming back to work to help keep the railways running during the coronavirus crisis.

Trains
Getty Images

Network Rail is appealing to former signallers to help man signal boxes and control centres and it looks to provide crucial cover for members of the workforce who may need to self-isolate.

Chris Gee, Head of Operations (Eastern Region) for Network Rail, said: “We are working hard to keep vital services, which get key workers to their jobs and food and medical supplies across the country, moving.

“We are appealing for signallers who’ve retired, moved on to other careers at Network Rail or left the railway to come back and help us keep signal boxes and control centres open.

“Signallers are crucial to keep the railway open and we need more former workers to help us provide back-up if some of our staff can’t come to work. Full re-training will be given.”

Any former professional signallers interested in helping to keep trains moving should email: RetiredSignallersEasternRegion@networkrail.co.uk

Watch: Lincoln joins 'Clap for Carers' NHS tribute

People in Lincolnshire have taken part in a "Clap for Carers" tribute, saluting NHS and care workers dealing with the coronavirus pandemic.

The Clap for Carers campaign, which started online, was staged because "during these unprecedented times they need to know we are grateful", according to the organisers.

A message from the NHS on social media described the countrywide tribute as "emotional":

Public asked to report people flouting group gathering ban

People are being asked to report any gatherings which breach strict government rules imposed to tackle the spread of coronavirus.

Police in high visibility clothing
PA Media

Humberside Police has set up an online reporting system for people to submit details of any groups seen flouting the guidelines.

Since Monday gatherings of more than two people, other than members of the same household, have been outlawed, with police given extra powers to tackle breaches.

People ignoring tougher restrictions on movement now face a £60 fine, with a £120 for a second offence.

Humberside Police say the new online portal will allow people to "help our local communities and save lives".

Chris Philpott at Humberside Police, said: “We're aware there will be individuals who choose not to adhere to government guidance and, understandably, people want to report this type of behaviour to us, as it's risking lives.

“The online portal has been developed precisely for reports like these, where groups have been seen gathered, and has a dedicated team who will receive the report as soon as it is made."

Council tax bills reduced for vulnerable

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Greater Lincolnshire councils will reduce tax bills for vulnerable people during the coronavirus pandemic, it's been confirmed.

Money
Local Democracy Reporting Service

As part of the government’s £500m hardship financial package, those who struggle to pay their council tax bills will receive support.

Those who currently receive council tax support from their local authority will see an automatic discount of up to £150.

People who receive the support will be sent an updated council tax bill.

Local authorities will now look to identify those who qualify for help in paying their bills.

Robert Jenrick, Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, said it was “critical” to offer financial support.

North East Lincolnshire Council will receive £1.6m from the government to help people who struggle to pay their bills.

This money will help some of our most vulnerable and those most in need of support. Those who qualify will receive a second council tax bill in the coming weeks with the updated amount you will be billed for."

Councillor Stan ShreeveNorth East Lincolnshire Council

Shoppers queue outside Lincolnshire supermarkets

People in Lincolnshire are queuing outside supermarkets as they try to stock up on necessities during the coronavirus lockdown.

Morrisons in Louth
BBC

These pictures show queues at Morrisons in Louth, Waitrose in Lincoln and Tesco on Wragby Road.

Waitrose in Lincoln
BBC

The major supermarkets are imposing limits on how many of each item people can buy, and some have introduced allotted times of the day when only the vulnerable or NHS staff and other key workers can shop.

Tesco on Wragby Road, Lincoln
BBC

Most are also introducing social distancing measures.

Housing firm closes sites to protect workers

One of Lincolnshire's biggest housing firms says it wasn't a difficult decision to close its sites to protect the safety of its builders during the coronavirus outbreak

Builders generic
Getty Images

The Managing Director of Chestnut Homes, David Newton, said: "It's all down to health and safety at the moment and the safety of all the staff and contractors. We took the decision based purely on that, and a wider social responsibility.

"It's not easy for contractors, because the moment there is no support for them in particular. But to me we all have to do our bit and keep everyone as safe as possible."

Up to 300 workers are affected, and one of the projects affected is Boston United's new ground

But, Mr Newton, who is also the chairman of Boston United, is hoping to see some progress over the next few weeks.

He added: "If it takes any longer than that then we'll have to see where that goes. We'll agree something with the league about how we move forward. We'll do a ground-share or have some sort of arrangement to get us through that."

High streets are empty as normal life is put on hold.
Roads are deserted in Lincolnshire and East Yorkshire after strict curbs on everyday life were announced.

Free visitor parking at Lincolnshire hospitals

Car parking will be free for visitors at Lincoln County Hospital, Boston Hospital and Grantham Hospital from tomorrow.

car park
BBC

The United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust (ULHT) says staff parking will be also be free from Wednesday 1 April.

However, visiting has been suspended at all hospitals in an effort to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

There are exceptions for the maternity and paediatric units, and on compassionate grounds, according to ULHT.

The trust says County Hospital in Louth is owned by NHS Property Services, and so at this time is not included in the changes.

Lincolnshire bus services affected by coronavirus

Bus services in Lincolnshire are being cut back in an effort to halt the spread of COVID-19.

One of the county's biggest operators, PC Coaches, says it will stop running services from the end of Friday:

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And Boston-based Brylaine Travel says after 28 March it's cancelling all Saturday services until further notice.

The company has asked for key workers who need transport across its routes on Saturdays to contact Call Connect.

Gin firm's hand sanitiser delivered to first responders

A Lincolnshire gin producer has today delivered its first batch of home-made hand sanitiser to a first responder charity in the county.

Last week, the LIVES charity told BBC Radio Lincolnshire it had run out of hand-sanitiser for its volunteers, who are often the first on the scene of medical emergencies.

Louth-based Pin Gin subsequently stepped forward to make sanitiser for the group:

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Four charged over lead thefts

Three men have been charged in connection with the theft of lead from churches in Lincolnshire and elsewhere.

police
BBC

The men, aged 25, 31 and 38, are all from the West Midlands area, police say.

They are due to appear at Lincoln Crown Court on 20 April to face charges including conspiracy to steal between August 2018 and March 2020.

All markets closed in East Lindsey due to coronavirus

Local Democracy Reporting Service

All markets in East Lindsey have been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic after the local council was criticised on social media.

Louth market
LDRS

East Lindsey District Council had originally decided to go ahead with markets in towns like Louth and Horncastle, saying food and grocery stalls were considered "essential" under government guidance.

But that decision has now been reversed after some residents accused the authority of encouraging people to come out of their homes, increasing the risk of spreading the virus.

The decision to host the market was taken when food was in short supply at supermarkets. We felt it was helpful to continue given the government’s latest advice. However, listening to your feedback, it’s clear you would rather the markets were cancelled. As such, we have taken this decision from today.

SpokespersonEast Lindsey District Council

Most councils across Lincolnshire have taken the decision to continue with their markets, with some increasing security measures.

Non-essential stalls have been banned at most markets, meaning there's just one stall at Sleaford's market, for example.

Positive tests for coronavirus in Lincolnshire reach 28

The number of confirmed Covid-19 cases in Lincolnshire has risen to 28.

Nurses
BBC

The United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust says nine of these patients are being treated on hospital wards, four at Boston Pilgrim and five at Lincoln County Hospital.

Public health officials in Lincolnshire say they hope the spread of the virus can be slowed, if people stay at home.

If we take on board the Prime Minister's guidance about requiring people to stay at home and stopping gatherings, I'm really hopeful we can kill the virus out in Lincolnshire over the next three to four weeks. That doesn't mean it won't come back again, but if we kill it out we can create capacity in the NHS."

Derek WardDirector of Public Health, Lincolnshire

Police boss fears lockdown fines not enough for 'hardcore'

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Lincolnshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) says he fears fines will not deter the most “hardcore” determined people from breaching the coronavirus lockdown.

Marc Jones
BBC

Marc Jones (pictured) says more legislation and prosecution needs to be in place to tackle those undeterred by the fines, but added he did not want to see police cells filled with people “being utterly stupid".

However, Mr Jones added he was confident people in Lincolnshire would be “largely compliant".

He says he was reassured the force could handle the lockdown announced by Prime Minister Boris Johnson yesterday in line with its planning.

Officers will initially be giving advice and guidance, however, legislation due out on Thursday is set to give police extra powers, including fining people who breach the lockdown between £30-£1,000.

Mr Jones said: "I would like to think in Lincolnshire we’re not going to need to be issuing people with fines – however, there’s always going to be that hardcore element.

"If we have got to the point they’re ignoring advice and having officers issue fines…I don’t think a £30 fine is going to put them off."

He added he was confident the initial impact of the lockdown would be manageable but recognised the situation was “only going to get worse over the coming weeks".

Mr Jones said steps were being taken to maximise staff numbers, including urging businesses to release special constables and cutting back on non-essential training.

MPs' open letter calls for calm amid coronavirus outbreak

An open letter's been signed by all Lincolnshire's MPs calling for people to stop stockpiling and keep calm.

Houses of Parliament
Google

Gareth Davies, Matt Warman, Victoria Atkins, Sir Edward Leigh, Sir John Hayes, Karl McCartney and Dr Caroline Johnson have all signed the letter.

They have come together to warn that the coronavirus outbreak is "the biggest public health emergency in a generation".

In the open letter, they say each one of them has received an unprecedented amount of letters, calls and emails and they are prioritising constituents most in need.

They write that it's vital people keep social distancing, stop stockpiling and "stay calm".

They conclude: "Guided by the best scientific advice, with the government’s clear action plan and through looking out for each other we will get through this, together."

Council's Coronavirus helpline and website delayed

Lincolnshire County Council says it's working hard to introduce a dedicated coronavirus helpline after the service was hit by a delay.

The council currently has pages on its website offering support.

county council
Lincolnshire County Council

The authority had hoped to have a new helpline and website up and running yesterday evening but as a result of pressure on its IT services neither is yet available.

The council says a new website and hotline will point people towards services like volunteering or community support projects, where to get food deliveries from and issues relating to benefits and similar issues.

It is very fast moving and, obviously, at the same time we're trying to make arrangements to make sure that 5,000 people can work from home. So our IT are incredibly busy trying to respond to everything."

Debbie BarnesChief Executive of Lincolnshire County Council

Coronavirus: Golf courses shut across England

BBC Sport

Golf courses across England will shut following the latest government measures to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.

golf
Getty Images

Amateur golfers had previously been able to continue playing while adhering to guidance on social distancing.

In a statement, England Golf said the move was “highly necessary and must be maintained until further notice”.

It added: “Keeping golf courses open is simply no longer compatible with the updated policy of government which is designed to save lives in a time of national emergency.”

Lincolnshire hospitals trust issues catering staff appeal

Local Democracy Reporting Service

The health trust which runs Lincolnshire's hospitals has appealed for temporary staff to help support its catering and housekeeping services as the coronavirus outbreak continues.

Boston Pilgrim Hospital
Google

United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust (ULHT) is looking for additional support at Lincoln County Hospital, Boston Pilgrim Hospital (pictured) and Grantham and District Hospital.

A spokesperson for ULHT said: “We are seeking people with housekeeping or catering experience. For catering, we would require only people who hold a current food hygiene certificate.

“All roles will be paid at the national living wage and will be appointed through our fast-track process.”

People who are interested should e-mail: COVID-TempRecruitment@ulh.nhs.uk

Police will take action to enforce efforts to combat virus

Police officers will take action to enforce strict new guidelines introduced to tackle the spread of coronavirus, the Assistant Chief Constable of Lincolnshire Police has said.

Kerrin Wilson
Lincolnshire Police

Kerrin Wilson said those who ignore new restrictions outlined by Boris Johnson last night will be dealt with using new powers set to come into force.

"For those in the minority who aren’t listening and who decide that they shouldn’t follow national advice in the midst of this global health crisis, we will have new powers to enforce social distancing," she said.

"We are working through the exact detail of what that means but these are powers we should not have to use, but will do so if necessary."

She said she "fully expected" people to adhere the restrictions, adding: "The government’s announcement asking us to change our behaviours is absolutely essential in order to save the lives of our loved ones, the vulnerable, the elderly.

"We are all in this together and need to look after one another."

Coronavirus: UK wakes to strict new curbs on life

The UK's woken to strict new curbs on life following an announcement by the prime minister last night of new rules imposed to help fight the coronavirus outbreak.

In a televised statement the prime minister ordered people only to leave their homes under a list of "very limited purposes".

Police will be given powers to enforce measures forcing people to stay at home unless shopping for food, exercising or going out for any medical need.

Under the new rules people can also leave home to provide care for someone, or to attend essential work which can't be done anywhere else.

The restrictions are in place for at least three weeks and will be kept under constant review, the prime minister said:

More about corona virus:

'Don't call 999 for coronavirus guidance' - Police

Police across Yorkshire are urging people not to call 999 for advice about coronavirus and the new restrictions brought in by the government.

Police
West Yorkshire Police

Following Boris Johnson's televised statement yesterday evening, in which he ordered people not to leave their homes except for a few "very limited purposes", the region's police forces say they have seen a rise in calls.

West Yorkshire Police say since the announcement it's experienced an extremely high volume of calls from people asking for further guidance.

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Meanwhile, Chief Constable of Humberside Police Lee Freeman said the force had taken "a number of calls on our 101 line from people seeking answers, but at this early stage are not able to answer all of your enquiries".

He said the force would share more information as soon as it became available but in the meantime urged people to follow the government guidance.

Lincolnshire Show cancelled due to coronavirus pandemic

This year's Lincolnshire Show has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, it's been announced.

Lincolnshire Show
BBC

The chief executive of the show, Jayne Southall, says it's a "devastating" decision and members of the team behind the show are "heartbroken".

However, Ms Southall says organisers had been monitoring government advice and saw there was no alternative other than to cancel.

The show is the one of the main highlights of the county's summer events season, attracting at least 60,000 visitors and 600 trade stands every year to the showground north of Lincoln.

The show has only been cancelled a few times in its 150 years, during both world wars and more recently in 2001 due to the foot and mouth outbreak.

'Please stay away' - Council chief warns seaside visitors

The leader of a Lincolnshire council is urging people to "please stay away" from coastal towns after reports Skegness was very busy at the weekend despite government advice about self-isolating due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Skegness
Google

Councillor Craig Leyland, leader of East Lindsey District Council, says the authority will look at options to prevent people visiting the area.

Mr Leyland said "the time for business as usual has gone".

"It's now about our survival as a community to get through this so that when we're done we can welcome visitors again.

"Our residents need to be fully concentrated on their own well-being, as do our NHS and police staff. We need to look after ourselves. Please stay away."

Routine surgery cancelled at Lincolnshire hospitals

Routine surgery across Lincolnshire's hospitals is to be cancelled from tomorrow due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Boston Pilgrim Hospital
Google

United Lincolnshire Hospitals Trust (ULHT) says all day-cases and elective surgery will be cancelled at Lincoln County Hospital, Boston Pilgrim (pictured) and Grantham Hospital.

Cancer surgery and other clinically urgent cases is not included, according to ULHT.

In a statement, the trust says: "This move is being made as part of our response to the current COVID-19 outbreak, enabling hospitals to free up staff to care for patients in other areas."

All patients will be contacted directly if they're affected, the trust adds.

McDonald's and Nando’s to close all UK restaurants

McDonald's will close all 1,270 of its restaurants in the UK by the end of Monday, as fears over the spread of coronavirus escalate.

McDonald's sign
Getty Images

Nando's has also said it has closed its approximately 400 restaurants in the UK "until further notice".

Both chains said they wanted to protect the staff and customers during the coronavirus outbreak.

On Friday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said restaurants and cafes must close, but exempted take-away food places.

Lincolnshire's weather forecast

After a cold start, today will be dry with plenty of sunshine and just the odd patch of cloud, with temperatures up to 11C.

Tonight will be dry with long, clear spells and just a few patches of cloud before turning cold with a gentle south to south-easterly breeze.

weather graphic
BBC

UK pubs and restaurants told to shut in virus fight

Cafes, pubs and restaurants must close from Friday night, except for take-away food, to tackle coronavirus, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said.

cafe scene
Getty Images

Night clubs, theatres, cinemas, gyms and leisure centres have also been asked to close "as soon as they reasonably can".

Mr Johnson said that, at present, "we need to keep people apart" - but that the situation will be reviewed each month.

Coronavirus: How close are we to getting a vaccine?

James Gallagher

Health and science correspondent, BBC News

Research into coronavirus is happening at breakneck speed.

There are more than 20 vaccines in development.

One has begun human trials after unusually skipping any animal research to test either the safety or the effectiveness of the vaccine.

Other scientists are at the animal research stage and hope to get the results of human trials later in the year.

But even if scientists can celebrate having developed a vaccine this year, there is still the massive job of being able to mass-produce it.

It means, realistically, one would not be ready until at least the middle of next year.

All of this is happening on an unprecedented timescale and using new approaches to vaccines, so there are no guarantees everything will go smoothly.

Remember there are four coronaviruses that already circulate in human beings. They cause the common cold, and we don't have vaccines for any of them.

Leisure centres in East Lindsey to close from today

Local Democracy Reporting Service

Leisure centres across East Lindsey will close from the end of today until further notice due to the coronavirus outbreak – but fitness enthusiasts will still be able to get their kicks.

Louth Meridian
Google

The closure affects Horncastle and Skegness Pool and Fitness Suites, Meridian Leisure Centre in Louth and the Station Sports Centre in Mablethorpe, according to Magna Vitae, the trust which runs East Lindsey District Council's sports facilities.

The trust says it will freeze direct debit memberships of its facilities, including fitness, Waterwise swimming lessons and gymnastic memberships, from tomorrow for the length of the closure period.

In its place, Magna Vitae will launch a new project with a company which specialises in workouts based in the home. Further details have yet to be released on how it will work.