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  Tenderly by James Last

Rise in car journeys prompts new appeal to obey the rules 

 Priti Patel will today (25/4) urge the public to stick to coronavirus restrictions amid “worrying” evidence that commitment to the lockdown is beginning to wane.

According to official figures, motor vehicle use has risen from 38 per cent of pre-pandemic levels to 41 per cent in a week. The home secretary will today host a Downing Street press conference and warn people of the need to follow the rules.  A source close to Ms Patel said: “We are seeing a worrying increase in people moving around. The vast majority of the public are still doing the right thing. We know it [is] hard but everyone needs to stick with it. The more people comply with the rules, and we slow the spread of this virus, the sooner we can think about easing some of the social distancing rules.”

There is mounting evidence that Britain’s economy is slowly reopening, with some of Britain’s biggest housebuilders announcing that they are resuming construction.

However, government insiders suggested that hairdressers would be among the last businesses allowed to reopen because of the difficulty of cutting hair from a safe distance.

Ministers were understood to be keen for hair salons to reopen as soon as possible because it would be “good for morale” but senior figures now

Public backing for the government’s approach remains high, according to a YouGov poll, with 60 per cent saying that ministers are responding well, but it is down from 72 per cent in the days after the lockdown came into force. Anger over testing and PPE appears to be having an impact.  (Source:  The Times 25/4)