LONDON - The UK is ‘on the edge of losing control’ of coronavirus, a top scientist has warned. It comes as police urged the public not to treat this weekend as as ‘party’ ahead of the new ‘rule of six’ coronavirus restrictions coming into force on Monday.

Gatherings of more than six people will be banned and those caught flouting the rules could be hit with a £100 fine. The R value of coronavirus transmission across the UK has officially risen above 1 for the first time since early May.

Former chief scientific adviser Sir Mark Walport said the only way the UK could stay on top of the virus was for people to limit who they came into contact with. He told the BBC: ‘I think one would have to say that we’re on the edge of losing control.

‘You’ve only got to look across the Channel to see what’s happening in France, what’s happening in Spain. ‘The French on Thursday had 9,800 new infections and one can see their hospital admissions and indeed their intensive care admissions are going up.’(FA)