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Coronavirus: The 13 major developments that happened on Wednesday

Rebecca C. Taylor
·3-min read

Here’s what you need to know on 12 August. This article was updated at 4.30pm.

Deaths: The Government said 46,706 people had died in hospitals, care homes and the wider community after testing positive for coronavirus in the UK, as of 5pm on Tuesday, up by 77 from the day before.

Local lockdowns: The local lockdown in Aberdeen will remain in place for another week, Nicola Sturgeon has confirmed. The city was put into lockdown after a spike in cases. Read more here.

Oldham could be the first place in England to go back to a full lockdown as cases continue to rise. Officials in Manchester have warned they are considering closing bars, restaurants, libraries and leisure centres following a surge in the numbers of people testing positive. Read more here.

Education: Teaching unions have attacked Gavin Williamson as “ignorant” after he announced last-minute changes to the way A-level and GCSE results will be dealt with. The education secretary said late on Tuesday that students in England will be able to use their results in mock tests to appeal if they are unhappy with the expected grades they are given by teachers, and which are then moderated by exam boards. Read more here.

Finance: The UK economy suffered its largest-ever contraction and officially entered a recession in the second quarter, as the coronavirus lockdown took a heavy toll on economic activity in the country. Read more here.

NatWest has announced it will shed 550 jobs in its branches and those of the Royal Bank of Scotland, citing “rising customer demand for digital banking services”. It will also close its Regents House office in London. Read more here.

Travel: France is on the brink of being added to the list of countries where travellers will have to quarantine on return to the UK after it recorded 10,800 new cases in a week. Ministers are due to discuss the country’s rate on Wednesday but might delay a decision. Read more here.

Entertainment: More than 300 venues have been lit up red around the UK to highlight the “red alert” as the events industry continues to struggle in the wake of the coronavirus lockdown. Protests have taken place and artists have lent their support to people like producers, engineers and security staff who rely on events to make a living. Read more here.

Read more about COVID-19

How to get a coronavirus test if you have symptoms

What you can and can’t do under lockdown rules

In pictures: How UK school classrooms could look in new normal

How public transport could look after lockdown

How our public spaces will change in the future

Rest of the world

New Zealand officials are looking into whether its recent COVID-19 cases were imported by freight as Auckland goes into a new lockdown to prevent further spread. Health officials have been left baffled by the outbreak, as there had been no community transmission for 102 days. Read more here.

Australia has suffered its deadliest day of the coronavirus pandemic so far, after 21 people died from the infection on Wednesday. The deaths, which were recorded in Victoria, dented hopes that a second wave gripping the state may be stabilising. Read more here.

Germany has warned that Russia’s claim that it has developed the world’s first coronavirus vaccine could prove “dangerous”. Health minister Jens Spahn said he was sceptical about the claims, warning they could ultimately “kill the acceptance” of vaccination as a weapon against the disease. Read more here.

The Paris Marathon, which had been rescheduled to November, has been cancelled. Runners who were registered for the 2020 Paris Marathon will be automatically entered into the 2021 event, which is expected to revert back to its April standing. Read more here.

Positive news

Meet Storm, Star, Jasper, Digby, Norman, Asher, Kyp and Bramble, dogs being trained to detect COVID-19 by sniffing it out. Read more here.

Coronavirus: what happened today

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