THE streets were deserted today as coronavirus fears prompted the nation to stay indoors to stem its spread.

The Prime Minister ordered bars, pubs and restaurants to close on Friday, following a previous announcement to shut schools to all pupils apart from key workers.

At a Downing Street press conference on Sunday, Boris Johnson urged the public to take self-isolation measures seriously, even though he said it went against what people saw as “the inalienable free-born right of people born in England to go to the pub”.

Eerie pictures of empty streets across Brighton and Hove were shared as people abided by the advice and stayed at home.


It comes after hundreds of people were spotted on the seafront on Saturday as the sun came out.

Deputy chief medical officer Dr Jenny Harries said the Government was not saying “don’t go outside” but to leave the house in a way that reduces social contact.

She recommended taking walks while keeping a distance of two metres apart or while taking bike rides together.

She also urged parents and carers to make sure children could go outside but not “in groups”.

She advised against team games, saying: “The most important part of (team games) is the social element around it, so if everybody piles up in shared cars that’s not a good thing to do. Exercising fine, but cut right down on the social connections.”

• The coronavirus Sussex Crisis Fund has been set up to help those affected by the pandemic. The Argus’s charity and American Express have each donated £50,000 to kick-start the appeal. Grants will usually be for up to £5,000. More information is available at www.sussexgiving. To donate visit or call the team on 01273 409440 or email