Last plane load of Brits from China's coronavirus danger zone is taken into ...

The last group of Britons from coronavirus-hit Wuhan were put into quarantine this morning as expats still stranded in China were told to make their own way home. 

Eleven British nationals and their family members arrived at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire just before 8pm last night and were whisked into isolation.

The group were taken to Arrowe Park Hospital in the Wirral, Merseyside, where they joined 83 expats who had already started their 14-day isolation period.

But the Foreign Office has warned an estimated 30,000 Britons trapped in China it cannot guarantee to get them home. 

They've been told to make their own way home despite most airlines suspending all flights to mainland China until March. 

The Government said it would not be sending any more evacuation flights, but it may be able to shoehorn small numbers of Britons onto other EU rescue planes. 

The epidemic's official death toll spiked overnight by 57 to 361 cases in China, plus one in the Philippines. Chinese authorities reported 2,829 new cases over the last 24 hours, taking the number of infections to above 17,400 worldwide.

Eleven British nationals and their family members arrived at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire last night and were whisked into isolation on a bus in the early hours

Eleven British nationals and their family members arrived at RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire last night and were whisked into isolation on a bus in the early hours 

They were pictured being driven by bus drivers without any protective clothing - sparking fears the Government is not taking the threat of an outbreak seriously

They were pictured being driven by bus drivers without any protective clothing - sparking fears the Government is not taking the threat of an outbreak seriously

Three people are spotted disembarking from the evacuation flight from the coronavirus-hit city of Wuhan, shortly before 8pm

Three people are spotted disembarking from the evacuation flight from the coronavirus-hit city of Wuhan, shortly before 8pm

More than 17,200 people have been infected worldwide, higher than the total recorded cases of the SARS virus that killed some 800 people in 2002 and 2003

More than 17,200 people have been infected worldwide, higher than the total recorded cases of the SARS virus that killed some 800 people in 2002 and 2003

The British embassy in Wuhan has been closed and the Foreign Office started pulling diplomats and their families from the disease-hit region last Friday. 

The Government has warned the stranded expats 'in the event that the situation deteriorates further, the ability of the British embassy and consulates to provide assistance to British nationals from within China may be limited'.

Dominic Raab, the foreign secretary, said British officials were 'working tirelessly on the ground in China to make sure we can get the information to those that need it'.   

The group that arrived last night were pictured being driven by bus drivers without any protective clothing - sparking fears the Government is not taking the threat of an outbreak seriously. 

The highly contagious infection can spread via a simple cough, sneeze or handshake and the virus can live on inanimate objects such as door handles. 

One of the first wave of evacuees, PE teacher Kharn Lambert, said the group were in 'good spirits' despite being cooped up in the Merseyside hospital. 

Mr Lambert has lived in Wuhan for the last five years and was being visited by his 81-year-old grandmother, Veronica Theobald, when the outbreak occurred. 

They arrived at the hospital on January 31 as part of the first group of 83 British evacuees. 

One of the evacuees, PE teacher Kharn Lambert, said the group were in 'good spirits' despite being cooped up in the Merseyside hospital

One of the evacuees, PE teacher Kharn Lambert, said the group were in 'good spirits' despite being cooped up in the Merseyside hospital

Officials in protective suits inspect on an elderly man wearing a facemask who collapsed on a street near a hospital in Wuhan

Officials in protective suits inspect on an elderly man wearing a facemask who collapsed on a street near a hospital in Wuhan

He told Sky News' Kay Burley on Monday: 'It's quite weird being home but not being home, and also being locked in - almost like being back in Wuhan really - where we can't get outside certain perimeters and go further, so it's a bit of a weird feeling really.' 

Mr Lambert said that, out of the original group, no-one was showing any coronavirus symptoms or complaining about feeling unwell. 

'Everybody is in good spirits,' he said. 'As you can imagine, it's not the best of circumstances but we're all trying to keep our spirits high. 

'We're playing jokes on each other, we're having a laugh when we have the chance to see each other.' 

Members of staff at the hospital could be seen unloading children's toys as well as games consoles when preparing for the first group of arrivals on Friday. 

'Most of this stuff is coming from donations from people on the Wirral just to keep us entertained really,' Mr Lambert said.  

Food is delivered at Arrowe Park Hospital in Wirral on Sunday where almost 100 British nationals are being held in quarantine

Food is delivered at Arrowe Park Hospital in Wirral on Sunday where almost 100 British nationals are being held in quarantine

Mr Lambert said he has not seen the new arrivals and believes they are currently being housed away from the other people in quarantine

Mr Lambert said he has not seen the new arrivals and believes they are currently being housed away from the other people in quarantine 

WUHAN CORONAVIRUS: WHAT WE KNOW SO FAR

What is this virus?

The virus has been identified as a new type of coronavirus. Coronaviruses are a large family of pathogens, most of which cause mild lung infections such as the common cold.

But coronaviruses can also be deadly. SARS, or severe acute respiratory syndrome, is caused by a coronavirus and killed hundreds of people in China and Hong Kong in the early 2000s.

Can the Wuhan coronavirus kill?

Yes – 213 people have so far died after testing positive for the virus. 

What are the symptoms?

Some people who catch the Wuhan coronavirus may not have any symptoms at all, or only very mild ones like a sore throat or a headache.

Others may suffer from a fever, cough or trouble breathing. 

And a small proportion of patients will go on to develop severe infection which can damage the lungs or cause pneumonia, a life-threatening condition which causes swelling and fluid build-up in the lungs.

How is it detected?

The virus's genetic sequencing was released by scientists in China and countries around the world have used this to create lab tests, which must be carried out to confirm an infection.

Delays to these tests, to test results and to people getting to hospitals in China, mean the number of confirmed cases is expected to be just a fraction of the true scale of the outbreak.  

How did it start and spread?

The first cases identified were among people connected to the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market in Wuhan.

Cases have since been identified around China and are known to have spread from person to person.

What are countries doing to prevent the spread?

Countries in Asia have stepped up airport surveillance. They include Japan, South Korea, Thailand, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia and Philippines.

Australia and the US are also screening patients for a high temperature, and the UK announced it will screen passengers returning from Wuhan.

Is it similar to anything we've ever seen before?

Experts have compared it to the 2003 outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). The epidemic started in southern China and killed more than 700 people in mainland China, Hong Kong and elsewhere.

SCROLL DOWN TO SEE MAILONLINE'S FULL Q&A ON THE CORONAVIRUS 

Mr Lambert said he has not seen the new arrivals and believes they are currently being housed away from the other people in quarantine. 

Mrs Theobald, from Lancaster, has chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and her grandson previously said he was worried about the impact of the outbreak on her. 

After the long journey back to the UK, Mr Lambert said his grandmother was recovering from the trip and added: 'I spoke to her late last night and she's in good spirits again.' 

He later praised the staff taking care of the evacuees in the hospital accommodation block. He said: 'They're all being told to wear protection, ie masks and gloves, when they're in the communal areas. 

'They've been absolutely fantastic since the moment we arrived and we can't thank them enough for everything they're doing for us at the moment.' 

He added that he would wait for advice from the British and Chinese governments about returning to his job at a school in Wuhan. 

Health officials in Britain are still scrambling to trace 438 people who entered the UK from Wuhan in the last two weeks. 

The number of coronavirus tests that have come back negative in the UK is now 264, the Department of Health said. 

The latest figures, published on Sunday afternoon, showed 266 tests have been carried out to date. 

A University of York student and their relative remain the only two positive cases of coronavirus recorded in the UK. 

The university's dedicated helpline for people with concerns about the virus received more than 240 calls by Sunday afternoon. 

In a statement on Sunday, University of York vice-chancellor Professor Charlie Jeffery and representatives from the Chinese Students and Scholars Association said the student did not attend a university Chinese New Year celebration or recent graduation ceremonies. 

They said as soon as the student's relative showed symptoms, they contacted emergency services and were both taken to the specialist medical facility in Newcastle, where they were diagnosed with the virus.   

It comes as officials are trying to trace 480 travellers who arrived in the country nine days ago from the city in China.

More than a third of the 1,561 passengers and aircrew who arrived before the city was quarantined by the Chinese authorities last month remain unaccounted for. 

In a leaked email seen by the Liverpool Echo, the medical compound's chief executive Janelle Holmes told staff: 'We were asked to accommodate a small number of UK citizens who did not make the flight on Thursday from China with the last group.

The first group landed in Oxfordshire before being whisked 170 miles to the North West in a convey of buses driven by drivers who bizarrely did not wear face masks.

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Ben Kavanagh was among those taking to social media last night to share their experiences of arriving at the hospital.

He posted a picture of himself wearing a mask to Instagram with the caption: 'We are all now safe in quarantine.

'Everyone has been fantastic, the airline, the stewards/stewardesses, the bus drivers, the NHS. 

'Been travelling for 40 hours. I am mostly grease at this point. I will try to reply to everyone's kind messages tomorrow.'

The rest of the groups identities remain closely guarded by Public Health England, but many who missed out on Thursday's airlift have since been critical of the government that they were denied a spot.

A spokesman for the Foreign Office said: 'The Government is in touch with British nationals who remain in Wuhan, and are doing everything we can to bring them home as safely and quickly as possible.' 

Everything we know we know about the deadly coronavirus in China: But how worried should we be? 

Someone who is infected with the Wuhan coronavirus can spread it with just a simple cough or a sneeze, scientists say.

At least 170 people with the virus are now confirmed to have died

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