Hospitals are filling up at a terrifying pace, with more Covid-19 cases now than ever. A new variant is sweeping through the capital and the country, with more than a million of us currently infected. Nicola Sturgeon, the Scottish First Minister, says she is more worried now than she has been at any point in the pandemic. Matt Hancock, the Health Secretary, puts it differently. ‘I am optimistic,’ he says. ‘We’ve got the light at the end of the tunnel and it’s getting brighter. Of course, we’ve got a difficult time between now and then but the vaccine is going to get us out of it.’ We are, he says, ‘going to have a great summer’.
Hancock sees the war against coronavirus as being in its final stages, a metaphor made all the more real by the presence of the military.