The second monthly report from the country's largest coronavirus study has been published, and shows a continued Covid-19 decline across late June and early July.

Published today, the REACT-1 study, conducted by Imperial College London and national polling firm Ipsos MORI, show a continued reduction in instances of the virus, with Covid-19 spreading less than it did in May.

The study involved 150,000 volunteers tested across England between 19 June and 8 July.

Instances of the virus continued to halve every 8 to 9 days during this period.

The report also shows there were no significant differences between the prevalence of infection for key workers and non-key workers.

This is in contrast to the findings from Imperial’s first study, which looked at infection in May. It showed care and healthcare workers had increased risk of infection compared with those who were not key workers.

Reacting to the report, Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said: “This research highlights how, thanks to everyone’s efforts and sacrifice, alongside targeted measures to counter the spread of this virus in health and care settings, we were able to keep rates of infection low as some restrictions were lifted.

“However, we must not be complacent. I urge everyone to get a test if you have symptoms, self-isolate and provide your contacts to NHS Test and Trace so we can continue to keep the virus at bay and get back to normal.”

Professor Paul Elliott, FMedSci and director of the programme at Imperial College London, said: “Through our community testing programme, we’re beginning to build a more informed picture of Covid-19 across England.

"This surveillance programme is showing us the prevalence of infection between different demographics, age groups and ethnicities as well as giving us insight into how easing lockdown restrictions are affecting the infection rate.”

Kelly Beaver, managing director for public affairs at Ipsos MORI added: “The second report from this hugely significant study has underlined the importance of random, at home testing to determine the prevalence of Covid-19 throughout England as we go through the different stages of this pandemic.

"Ipsos MORI is incredibly grateful to all those members of the public who agreed to take part in the study.”

The study was commissioned by the Government's Department for Health and Social Care.