The government confirmed the cases at 9.30am this morning.
Update on #Coronavirus:@CMO_England statement on two confirmed cases in England.— Department of Health and Social Care (@DHSCgovuk) January 31, 2020
▶️ https://t.co/lAQUTk8qm4 pic.twitter.com/7p77OihKmv
More cases could be confirmed later as a flight from the epicentre of the outbreak, Wuhan is China, lands at RAF Brize Norton in West Oxfordshire.
Roads around the airbase will be closed until this evening and those on board will be taken to an NHS facility in the Wirral to be quarantined.
READ MORE about the flight landing in Oxfordshire
The flight, carrying 83 British people and 27 foreign nationals, is due to land at 1.30pm.
The two cases of the virus are the first to be diagnosed in the UK.
The Department of Health declined to say where in England the patients were from but it is understood they are not in the Wirral area, where a special facility has been set up to quarantine those returning from Wuhan.
In a statement, chief medical officer Professor Whitty said: "The patients are receiving specialist NHS care, and we are using tried and tested infection control procedures to prevent further spread of the virus.
"The NHS is extremely well-prepared and used to managing infections and we are already working rapidly to identify any contacts the patients had, to prevent further spread.
"We have been preparing for UK cases of novel coronavirus and we have robust infection control measures in place to respond immediately.
"We are continuing to work closely with the World Health Organisation and the international community as the outbreak in China develops to ensure we are ready for all eventualities."