French President Emmanuel Macron has announced a second national lockdown after a surge in coronavirus cases.

The new measures announced will come into force on Friday.

In an address to the nation, France was told that people will have to stay in their homes except to buy essential goods, seek medical attention or to exercise for one hour per day.

People will still be allowed to go to work if their employer decides it it impossible to do their job at home, but most schools will remain open.

Average daily Covid-19 infections in France have increased from 17,000 to 36,000 over the past two weeks and the latest figures represent a record level of new cases in the country, more than seven times the peak from the first wave earlier this year.

President Emmanuel Macron announced that France's national lockdown will last the whole of November

France now has the highest number of new cases in Europe and Mr Macron said intensive care units in hospitals were already at 58%.

He said: "The virus is circulating at a speed that not even the most pessimistic forecasts had anticipated.

"Like all our neighbours, we are submerged by the sudden acceleration of the virus.

"We are all in the same position: overrun by a second wave which we know will be harder, more deadly than the first."

People in France will be told to stay in their homes except to buy essential goods, seek medical attention or for their one-hour of exercise per day

Travel is banned between different regions and the lockdown will be in place for the whole of November.

In addition, restaurants and bars will be shut, non-essential shops will be closed and universities will be moved to online teaching.

France reported 523 new deaths on Tuesday, the highest figure since mid-April, and its coronavirus death toll is the seventh highest in the world.

France currently has the highest coronavirus infection rate in the whole of Europe

Earlier this month Mr Macron announced night-time curfews in Paris and several other big cities in a bid to curb the rising rate of infection, but officials this week acknowledged that had been insufficient.

Medical experts warned that hospitals would be overwhelmed by mid-November without drastic action.