Brits are being urged to “be careful” when it comes to casual sex as part of efforts to limit the spread of coronavirus.

Matt Hancock said people need to be careful when it came to having sexual relationships outside “established relationships”, saying they should “be sensible”.

The Health Secretary was speaking on Sky News after he was asked about the government’s guidance that only “established” couples should be having sex.

He said: “In these rules that we have to bring in, there have to be boundaries, to coin a phrase.

“If you’re saying that two households shouldn’t mix, which we are in some parts of the country – in the North East, the North West, in Scotland, in parts of Wales – then you have to then define what is the boundary of that.”

Hancock added: “I think we should stick to the letter of it, which is it is okay in an established relationship.

“It just means that people need to be careful, they need to be sensible.

“If you’re in a relationship that is well established… what it means is people realising that coming into close contact with people from other households, then that is how the virus spreads.”

Mr Hancock joked that “I know I am in an established relationship” with his wife.

During the early days of the coronavirus lockdown, couples were told to move in together or stay apart but government guidance was later updated to say that those in “an established relationship” did not need to socially distance from each other.