The prime minister is set to tell the nation that we must proceed with ‘maximum caution’ as he sets out a roadmap out of lockdown.
Britain is about to enter the most dangerous phase of the virus spread, he is expected to say.
He told The Sun: ‘This is the dangerous bit.
‘We’re past the peak now but we’ll have to work even harder to get every step right.
‘Mountaineers always say that coming down from the peak is the most dangerous bit. That’s when you’re liable to be over-confident and make mistakes.
‘You have very few options on the climb up — but it’s on the descent you have to make sure you don’t run too fast, lose control and stumble.’
Ahead of the speech at 7pm tonight, the PM has dropped the ‘stay at home’ slogan and replaced it for ‘stay alert, control the virus and save lives’.
The change has drawn criticism from many who have said it is not clear enough to have an impact on the nation.
The hashtag ‘stay alert’ was trending on Twitter this morning, with social media users pointing out that the virus is an ‘invisible threat’ and many sufferers are asymptomatic, adding that paying extra attention won’t be enough to stop people from catching it.
Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said a ‘broader’ slogan was needed as the Government tries to restart the economy.
‘I think that’s what the public want and that they will be able to understand this message, which is that we should be staying home as much as possible but when we do go to work and go about our business we need to remain vigilant, we need to stay alert.’
Asked on Sky’s Sophy Ridge On Sunday if there was a danger the message was too woolly, Mr Jenrick said: ‘Well I hope not.
‘We need to have a broader message because we want to slowly and cautiously restart the economy and the country.’
But Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said she would not be ditching the current ‘stay home’ message.
‘The Sunday papers is the first I’ve seen of the PM’s new slogan.
‘It is of course for him to decide what’s most appropriate for England, but given the critical point we are at in tackling the virus, #StayHomeSaveLives remains my clear message to Scotland at this stage.’
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