Coronavirus infection rates have climbed 20 per cent in a week in Greater Manchester as the region ends 2020 under new Tier 4 restrictions.
The latest data from Public Health England shows there were 6,076 positive tests across the region in the week ending December 27.
That is an increase of 1,011 cases on the previous week – equivalent to a week-on-week rise of 20 per cent. Greater Manchester’s infection rate is now 214.3 cases per 100,000 people, which is the highest it has been for five weeks.
However, it is only half the rate for England as a whole, which now stands at 420.4 cases per 100,000 people, and way below the rate in London, where the rate has spiked up to 839.9.
All areas of the country saw a marked fall in the number of positive tests on Christmas Day – seen in the dip on the chart above – but numbers have gone back up again in the following days.
Cases are rising in nine of the ten boroughs in the Greater Manchester region and going up fastest in Stockport, Wigan, Trafford and Tameside, according to the latest data from Public Health England.
All these four boroughs have week-on-week increases of over 40 per cent.
Oldham is the only area where there has been a week-on-week fall in the number of positive tests according to the latest update.
However, Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham said earlier today that local health officials in Oldham believe there may have been a delay in reporting case results over Christmas which could have affected the latest data.
The highest infection rate is still in Trafford, where there were 620 positive tests in the week ending December 27 – giving an infection rate of 261.2 per 100,000 people.
Bolton has the lowest rate in the region at 177.7 cases per 100,000 people but has seen a 14 per cent increase in positive cases compared with the previous week.
Greater Manchester was placed under Tier 4 restrictions today amid fears that the new, more transmissible, variant of the virus which has driven up infection rates in London and the South East of England could impact other parts of the country.
Andy Burnham said the new variant is now accounting for around 25 per cent of infections in Greater Manchester.