Government stops weekend coronavirus briefings due to low viewing figures

The broadcasts from Number 10 will be cut from seven days to five days a week.

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The UK government will no longer hold a coronavirus daily briefing press conference on weekends after considering viewing figures to be too low.

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The Downing Street broadcasts, which take place around 5pm, will be cut from seven days to five days a week from today onwards.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson will host one of the press conferences himself once a week.

A Downing Street press officer confirmed the changes to RadioTimes.com, saying the number of people tuning in for the weekend briefings tends to be “significantly lower” than during the week.

They said the government will continue to keep the public updated and conduct a wide range of media interviews, ensuring they are delivering regular updates.

Since March, the Cabinet has held coronavirus press conferences every day at approximately 5pm to update the public on the number of COVID-19 deaths and the rate of infection.

The daily briefings, which are broadcast on BBC One, are presented by a Cabinet minister each day and have been used to announce the easing or tightening of lockdown rules.

At the weekend, Johnson announced that groups of up to six people can now meet outside, in public spaces and gardens, but individuals from different households must remain at least two metres apart.

Pointless’ Richard Osman recently told Radio Times magazine that their ratings often depends on who is presenting the daily briefing that day as the BBC Two game show competes with the conference.

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