Matt Hancock says he ‘regrets all the deaths’ on first lockdown anniversary

Matt Hancock has said he “regrets all of the deaths” when asked to reflect on the pandemic a year after the first Covid lockdown was introduced in the UK.

Speaking a year to the day since Boris Johnson issued a stay-at-home order, the health secretary told ITV’s Good Morning Britain he remembered learning of the UK’s first death from the disease.

“I regret all of the deaths,” he added. “I remember the very first one, and I remember feeling a deep sense of loss, and actually I found out about it when I was here at home, and sitting down, and that really hit me.”

The official death toll has now passed 126,000 – the highest in Europe and the fifth-highest worldwide.

Ministers faced criticism for delaying the first lockdown, with Italy, Spain and most of the continent acting first.

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