Twenty two police officers from an East Lancashire policing team are currently self isolating after nine other officers attended an in-house retirement gathering.

The nine officers, who are all thought to work out of Blackburn's Greenbank police station, came into contact with a person who tested positive for the coronavirus while attending the party which was being held for a retiring colleague.

These nine officers are then thought to have come into contact with 13 other officers within Blackburn with Darwen.

It is not yet known if any of the 22 officers in question have also tested positive for the virus, but the Lancashire Telegraph is led to believe that they are all now self-isolating at their respective homes.

A spokesperson for the police said: "We can confirm some police officers based in Blackburn are self-isolating after a colleague tested positive for Covid-19.

"An officer developed symptoms and was tested on July 21. 

"Immediately after we were notified of the positive result, rigorous contact tracing was put into place which has resulted in a number of officers self-isolating. 

"These staff will progressively return to work depending on when the contact with the affected officer took place."

ACC Peter Lawson said: “We take the health of both our officers and the communities we serve extremely seriously. 

"As soon as we were notified by an officer that they had tested positive for COVID-19 we immediately started tracing their contacts and requiring them to self-isolate.

"I can reassure people that we continue to meet all our minimum staffing levels and there will be no effect on operational policing in the county.”