Rishi Sunak insisted there was no need to move to Plan B to cut Covid cases today - after health chiefs discussed whether there needed to be an 'immediate rollout' of tougher measures to combat a surge in cases.
The Chancellor insisted that the data shows that bringing back working from home and introducing mandatory Covid passports was not yet required.
His comments to the BBC's Andrew Marr programme came after it was reported that the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) contacted local authorities on Friday to canvass their level of support for the 'immediate rollout of the winter plan - plan B'.
An 'official – sensitive' document seen by the Observer sought opinions from the leaders and chief executives of councils across England to be fed to the Cabinet Office before then end of the day.
But Mr Sunak today said: 'The data does not suggest we should be immediately moving to Plan B.'
However a leading Government scientist said 'some kind of Plan B' was needed immediately'.
Professor Adam Finn, who is on the Joint Committee of Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), said Covid-19 hospital admissions and deaths are rising, and warned against complacency in what he said is a 'worsening' situation.
The Chancellor insisted that the data shows that bringing back working from home and introducing mandatory Covid passports was not yet