London faces a move to tier three – England’s highest level of coronavirus restrictions – in the coming days, the BBC has been told.
Ministers and officials are said to be “deeply concerned” about a sharp rise in Covid-19 cases across the capital.
The BBC’s Hugh Pym reports London MPs have been briefed on the latest data, but no decision has yet been taken.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan urged ministers to act “with open eyes” and avoid damaging the capital’s economy.
He said tier three could have a “catastrophic consequence” for hospitality, culture and retail, as household mixing indoors is banned.
Council leaders in London are understood to be alarmed at the projected rise in cases and some are pushing for a “tier three plus” regime with tougher restrictions than tier three on its own.