Prime Minister Boris Johnson has told all pubs, bars, nightclubs and restaurants they must close tonight amid the coronavirus outbreak.

He said the Government is ‘collectively telling’ cafes, pubs, bars and restaurants to close tonight, as soon as they reasonably can, and to not reopen tomorrow.

“Though, to be clear, they can continue to provide takeout services,” he told the daily Covid-19 news conference.

“We are also telling nightclubs, theatres, cinemas, gyms and leisure centres to close on the same timescale.

“These are places where people come together and indeed the whole purpose, in many cases, of these businesses is to bring people together.

“But the sad thing I’m afraid today, for now at least, physically we need to keep people apart.”

Mr Johnson also confirmed the situation will be reviewed each month to see if the measures can be relaxed – and urged people not to go out tonight.

“The speed of our eventual recovery depends entirely on our collective ability to get on top of the virus now and that means we have to take the next steps on scientific advice,” he said.

"We need now to push down further on that curve of transmission between us."

Shortly after, Chancellor Rishi Sunak highlighted the financial support for workers.

He announced, for the first time in history, the Government will step in and help to pay people's wages.

He said: “We are setting up a new coronavirus job retention scheme.

"Any employer in the country, small or large, charitable or non-profit, will be eligible for this scheme.

“Employers will be able to contact HMRC for a grant to cover most of the wages of people who are not working but are furloughed and kept on payroll rather than being laid off.

“Government grants will cover 80 per cent of the salary of retained workers up to a total of £2,500 a month – that’s just above the median income.

"And of course, employers can choose to top up salaries further if they choose to."