With the rapid rise of infections, three England’s biggest cities are gradually on the edge of another lockdown
The biggest spike was in Birmingham, where 712 people caught the virus in the seven days up to Saturday.
from about 28 per 100,000 in previous week, new data shows there were more than 60 cases per 100,000 residents in the week to September 4.
Majority of cases are among people aged between 20 and 39, and private indoor gatherings could be responsible for this rise in transmissions
When Birmingham was placed into the ‘enhanced support’ category of Public Health England’s watchlist in August, the city council’s leader Ian Ward said it was a ‘wake-up call’.
Despite tough warnings, more testing and a crackdown on retail and hospitality venues breaching social distancing rules, cases have continued to rocket.
Birmingham’s director of public health, Dr Justin Varney, told BBC News:
‘If you look at what has happened to other areas that have had increasing rates like we have, then we may well see restrictions around household mixing because that does seem to be what is driving it here.
In Leeds, residents were also warned they face restrictions on movement due to a rise in new cases driven by young people.
In the past week, the infection rate has risen from 29.6 per 100,000 to 47.9 per 100,000.
A surge of coronavirus cases has been pinned on house parties, illegal raves and other unlicensed music events.
Council leader Judith Blake urged youngsters to
‘recognise their own responsibility’ in controlling the spread of the disease. She said:
‘We feel there is a bit of a complacency coming in.
What we are seeing is the numbers are changing, and actually more young people are testing positive and they are spread around the city.
‘So whereas we were focusing more on specific communities at the beginning, it is now clear the pattern is changing.’
Another city experience a rise in infections is Liverpool. Cases have risen from 14.9 per 100,000 to 35.7 per 100,000 in the past week.
As many as 200 pupils are now having to self-isolate after positive covid cases were traced to eight of the city’s schools.
Mayor Joe Anderson told the Liverpool Echo:
“We are hearing countless examples of shops in the city full of people not wearing face coverings.”
‘I think all shops in the city have a responsibility to make sure their customers are wearing a mask – apart from the small few exceptions”
‘I think its really important that shops and businesses take that responsibility and make sure these rules are enforced.’