Infection rates fall across most of Lancashire - here's how your town compares

The Covid-19 infection rate has fallen across much of Lancashire in the past week.

Tuesday, 1st December 2020, 12:30 pm

Analysis of official figures revealed that only the council areas of South Ribble and Lancaster recorded a rise in the seven days to November 26.

South Ribble's infection rate rose from 2013 per 100,000 people the week before to 236.5, with 262 new cases of the coronavirus diagnosed, while Lancaster's went from 117.8 to 124.7, with 182 new cases.

Blackpool's rate fell from 228.8 to 167.1, Preston's from 287.8 to 195.6, Chorley's from 236.9 to 188.6, West Lancashire's from 220.5 to 113.7, Fylde's from 248.8 to 158.5, and Wyre's from 162.4 to 119.5.

A gentleman on the Prom in Blackpool on October 16, 2020, wearing a mask during the Covid-19 pandemic (Picture: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

Blackburn with Darwen and Pendle, despite continuing to have two of the highest rates in the country, also saw falls, from 388.8 to 287.9 and 375.6 to 292 respectively.

The figures are based on tests carried out on laboratories and in the wider community. Data for the most recent days has been excluded as it is incomplete and does not reflect the true number of cases.

A majority of areas in England (294 out of 315) have seen a fall in case rates.

Swale in Kent continues to have the highest rate in England, with 832 new cases recorded in the seven days to November 26 – the equivalent of 554.4 cases per 100,000 people.

This is down very slightly from 563.0 in the seven days to November 19.

Medway – also in Kent – has the second highest rate, up from 395.6 to 496.5, with 1,383 new cases.

Boston in Lincolnshire is in third place, where the rate has risen slightly from 451.7 to 481.7, with 338 new cases.

After Medway, the areas with the biggest week-on-week jump in rates are Dover, Harlow, and Maidstone.

Large swathes of England face the toughest lockdown restrictions of the tier-based system from tomorrow.

Much of the Midlands, North East and North West, including all of Lancashire, will be in the most restrictive Tier 3, meaning a ban on households mixing, except in limited circumstances such as in parks, while bars and restaurants will be limited to takeaway or delivery services and people will be advised to avoid travelling outside their area.

The majority of England will be in Tier 2 – including London and Liverpool – where the restrictions mean a ban on households mixing indoors, and pubs and restaurants only able to sell alcohol with a “substantial meal”.

Only the Isle of Wight, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly will be placed in the lowest Tier 1 set of restrictions.

A vote on the new tier system is due to take place in Parliament today.

The Prime Minister is braced for a damaging Tory rebellion as MPs vote on the system of tiered controls.

But, despite Labour saying it would abstain, the Government is still expected to win.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer – who has previously backed Government measures – said while his party had “serious misgivings” it would not be in the national interest to vote them down when the virus still posed a “serious risk”.

However, with scores of Conservative MPs deeply unhappy at the extent of the restrictions, the vote is likely to throw Tory divisions into sharp relief.

Many backbenchers are furious their constituencies face stricter controls than before the latest lockdown which ends on Wednesday.

Blackpool North and Cleveleys MP Paul Maynard and Blackpool South MP Scott Benton, both Conservatives, both said they wrote to Boris Johnson to tell of their "disappointment" at the resort, which is heavily reliant on tourism and hospitality, being placed in Tier 3.

At a No 10 news conference yesterday, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said he hoped some areas could be moved into lower tiers when the restrictions come up for their first fortnightly review on December 16.

But scientists advising the Government have made clear they see little scope for any widespread easing before Christmas.

It could mean most areas of England will go into the new year in one of the toughest two tiers with a ban on households mixing indoors and strict controls on the hospitality sector.