Live updates: Metro Centre owner Intu has collapsed into administration after revenue drops due to coronavirus lockdown

It’s Friday, June 26, and here are all the updates we brought you during today on the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.

Friday, 26th June 2020, 3:31 pm

The company Intu Properties, which runs 17 shopping centres across the UK including the Metro Centre and Eldon Square, has confirmed that it will enter administration.

The company has confirmed that shopping centres will continue to trade throughout the administration process.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock has warned the Government will take action if social distancing measures are ignored as thousands flocked to the coast on Thursday, the hottest day of the year.

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The Metro Centre, Gateshead.

In total, 1,417 people who had tested positive for coronavirus have died across the North East’s hospital trusts according to data released by NHS England on Thursday, June 25 - a rise of two since yesterday.

According to the latest figures released by Public Health England on Thursday, June 25, there are 10,539 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the North East - a rise of five.

Scroll down and refresh the page for the latest updates as they happened throughout the day.

Live North East updates on coronavirus on Friday, June 26

Last updated: Friday, 26 June, 2020, 20:58

  • Health Secretary Matt Hancock has warned the Government will take action if social distancing measures are ignored as thousands flocked to the south coast on the hottest day of the year.
  • Metro Centre owner Intu Properties has said talks with lenders have failed to reach agreement and warned that it is on the verge of calling in administrators.

11:25am: Clean-up operation under way on North East beaches

A clean-up operation is under way on North East beaches after drunk revellers fought on the sand and dumped bottles and cans.

Police made a number of arrests following trouble at the seaside on Thursday as record numbers visited the beaches in the North Tyneside area.

A video shared on social media showed men fighting on the sand, close to where family groups sat enjoying the afternoon sunshine.

Another video taken later in the day showed men in handcuffs being taken away by officers, with a number of police vehicles parked up at the scene.

On Friday morning a clean-up was under way after piles of rubbish were dumped and debris from fires was left for other people to remove.

11.55am: Google announces support scheme for small businesses

Google has committed to assisting one million UK small businesses stay open by helping them become more visible online.

The technology giant said it would help businesses recover from the economic slump of the coronavirus lockdown by offering free mentoring, grants and advertising credits.

As part of the Open for Business initiative, the firm will offer 10,000 hours of free mentoring on online business to small companies and charities, as well as £25 million worth of advertising credits and grants and aid digital skill improvements in 100,000 people.

Any small business can sign up for the package of support from Friday, which has been created alongside small business advice firm Digital Boost.

12.15pm: Breaking news as a fire breaks out in a Sunderland care home

12.40pm: No new deaths in Scotland

No deaths were registered in the past 24 hours of patients who tested positive for coronavirus in Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon has announced.

Speaking at the Scottish Government's virtual coronavirus briefing, she said although this has happened around the weekend when registration figures tend to be artificially low, this is the first time it has happened on a weekday since before lockdown.

It means the death toll in Scotland under this measure remains at 2,482.

The First Minister said 18,213 people have tested positive for the virus in Scotland, up by 17 from 18,196 the previous day.

There are 823 people in hospital with confirmed or suspected Covid-19, a drop of three in 24 hours.

Of these patients, 17 are in intensive care, a fall of one.

1.50pm: Boris Johnson has warned of the danger of a “serious spike” in coronavirus infections

Boris Johnson has warned of the danger of a “serious spike” in coronavirus infections if people take “liberties” with social-distancing rules.

Speaking during a visit to a restaurant in east London, the Prime Minister said: “If you look at what’s happening elsewhere in the world where people have been coming out of lockdown, I’m afraid what you’re also seeing is people taking too many liberties with the guidance, mingling too much, not observing social-distancing.

“So in some parts of the world – I won’t name them – you have got spikes, really serious spikes, in the instance of the disease so it is crucial that people understand that on July 4 we get this right, we do this in a balanced way.”

2.50pm: No new coronavirus-related deaths in the North East

There have been no new coronavirus-related deaths recorded in the North East. Here is breakdown of deaths on a hospital trust basis:

South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust

Total number of deaths at the trust: 325

Number of deaths announced on June 26: 0

Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust

Total number of deaths at the trust: 200

Number of deaths announced on June 26: 0

North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust

Total number of deaths at the trust: 139

Number of deaths announced on June 26: 0

South Tees NHS Foundation Trust

Total number of deaths at the trust: 254

Number of deaths announced on June 26: 0

Newcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Total number of deaths at the trust: 116

Number of deaths announced on June 26: 0

County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust

Total number of deaths at the trust: 248

Number of deaths announced on June 26: 0

Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust

Total number of deaths at the trust: 135

Number of deaths announced on June 26: 0

3.15pm: The owner of the Metro Centre and Eldon Square has gone into administration

Intu Properties - the owner of the Metro Centre and Eldon Square - has entered administration following a drop in revenue caused by the Covid-19 lockdown.

Bosses have confirmed that shopping centres will remain open throughout the administration process.

4.00pm: The Department of Health and Social Care said 43,414 people had died after testing positive for Covid-19

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) said 43,414 people had died in hospitals, care homes and the wider community after testing positive for coronavirus in the UK as of 5pm on Thursday, up by 186 from the day before.

The Government figures do not include all deaths involving Covid-19 across the UK, which are thought to have passed 54,000.

The DHSC also said in the 24-hour period up to 9am on Friday, 165,665 tests were carried out or dispatched, with 1,006 positive results. Overall, a total of 8,911,226 tests have been carried out and 309,360 cases have been confirmed positive.

The figure for the number of people tested has been “temporarily paused to ensure consistent reporting” across all methods of testing.

5.52pm: 11 new Covid-19 cases in the North East

According to the latest figures released by Public Health England on Friday, June 26, there are 10,549 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the North East - a rise of 11. Here is a breakdown of the cases by local authority area:

County Durham: 2,061

Sunderland: 1,386

Newcastle: 1,083

Northumberland: 1,067

Gateshead: 1,016

South Tyneside: 751

Middlesbrough: 698

Stockton: 652

North Tyneside: 642

Redcar & Cleveland: 430

Darlington: 409

Hartlepool: 354

6.30pm: Labour leader says the Government are "losing control of the communications”

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said the Government was “losing control of the communications” after crowds were seen flocking to beaches during the hot weather.

“I’m really worried about the scenes we’ve seen from some of our beaches with overcrowding,” he said.

“This dates back to Dominic Cummings and that affair, where essentially the Government had a message that the public read as one rule for them, another for us.”

Sir Keir added: “The Prime Minister has to take responsibility for this. When he was asked about this in Parliament, the Prime Minister simply said ‘show some guts, support your communities’.

He urged Boris Johnson to “up your game on communications because this is very serious”.

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