Government health advisers have said a second national lockdown is "inevitable".

The statement comes as Health Secretary Matt Hancock told the House of Commons that changes to the local measures already in place are coming.

John Edmunds, a professor and member of SAGE, the body advising the government on controlling the pandemic, appeared on BBC's Newsnight last night.

He warned the localised measures - which he argued were "not working" - were merely "delaying the inevitable".

"These local restrictions that have been put in place in much of the north of England really haven't been very effective," he said.

He added: "We need to take much more stringent measures, not just in the north of England, we need to do it countrywide, and bring the epidemic back under control."

Worcester News: Matt Hancock said changes are comingMatt Hancock said changes are coming

It comes as Mr Hancock appeared in Parliament, where he told fellow MPs a simplified approach would be taken.

It has been reported that a traffic light system - with red, amber and green levels of measures - could be created nationwide, in a bid to simplify the existing localised rules.

"I’ll update the House in due course on what action the Government is taking so we can have more consistent approaches to levels of local action, working with our colleagues in local government," Mr Hancock said.

"For now, it’s essential that people follow the guidance in their local area."

In the North East, households are banned from mixing indoors, including pubs or restaurants, and will face fines for doing so.

Swathes of Merseyside, Birmingham and Greater Manchester remain in lockdown - with Luton the only town in England to exit enhanced measures.

Mr Hancock added: "The proposals that we are working through and that I will bring to this House are to have a more simplified approach to the local action that we took.

"We have shared that approach with the devolved administrations."

Amid the chaos, No10 signalled the next lockdown measures will be regional, rather than national.

That is despite pressure from advisors to go further and roll out something across England.

Questioned on Boris Johnson's view, his spokesman said: "He believes having national measures in place, and then having more stringent measures in areas where there is a higher prevalence of cases, remains the correct approach."

The PM's spokesman added: "We're seeing coronavirus cases rising across the country.

"But they are rising faster in the North East and the North West and that is concerning.

"We will not hesitate to take further action in the areas where cases and hospitalisations are rising significantly, in order to protect communities, protect the NHS, and to save lives."