RESIDENTS of Burnley have been reacting to news that the borough is the first area of the country to hit a landmark rate of over 300 coronavirus cases per 100,000 people.

In the week ending September 27, the area recorded a further 291 cases, equating to 327.3 cases per 100,000 people - a dramatic rise from 178.8 in the previous week.

The Landlady of the Thornton Arms on Brownside Road is hoping that people will follow the local restrictions more closely to help avoid a second lockdown in the county.

Jaimie Hopwood said: "Enough is enough now. People need to listen to the rules, conform and hopefully we will come out of this sooner rather than later.

"The majority of our customers have been absolutely brilliant. We have had the odd occasion where people don't want to listen, but they have just been removed from the building."

Jaimie thinks that if a second lockdown was to be put in place, it could be detrimental to businesses.

"Nobody wants to be shut but we have got to do what we possibly can do to help get this under control and get everybody back to normal."

Merle Robinson, Director of clothes store Vanessa Merle is dreading the thought of a second lockdown as the business is already struggling.

She said: "We are really really struggling at the moment so I don't know what will happen if we have a second lockdown.

"If we don't get any help I won’t survive anyway."

The designer clothes store sells events clothing and due to the industry being limited by guidelines, sales are down for the clothes shop.

"We sell designer dresses and those kinds of things. There are no weddings, you can't go out anywhere so it’s really really bad at the moment.

"Everybody is the same it’s not just me, it must be right across different aspects of the town. What can they do, I don't know what the answer is really."

Some Burnley businesses may be able to cope with a second lockdown due to an increased volume in online sales with Electron Records on Hall Street seeing a recent jump in web purchases.

Company director Leslie Baxter said: "I could cope with it, but I don't think a lot of other people could. Most of what we do is online so I can handle it but if you're a coffee shop you are in trouble."

"It's not ideal. It wouldn't be good for the town."

Cllr Gordon Birtwistle, for Coalclough with Deerplay, has said the sudden jump in cases is 'worrying' and it doesn't help that having different local and national rules are making matters confusing for residents.

On top of this, due to having an older iPhone, the councillor is unable to use the Track and Trace app which was launched last week.

"It's really really disappointing and extremely worrying," he added. "A lot of people are ignoring the instructions of the government which in themselves are so confusing nobody understands them so that doesn't help.

"Track and Trace is a shambles. My wife and I were going to put it on our phones but it doesn't work on an iPhone 6 so we can't actually log onto it on our iPhones.

"I would suggest that there are still thousands and thousands of people, especially our age who don't want the new technology that probably have iPhone 6s and can't do anything with them."

Lancashire’s top three Directors for Public Health are now urging everyone to work together to avoid further local lockdown measures as it is believed that we could be just weeks away from a full county-wide lockdown if people don’t take notice now.

Sakthi Karunanithi, DPH for Lancashire County Council, Dominic Harrison, DPH for Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council and Arif Rajpura, DPH for Blackpool Council have come together to ask the people of Lancashire to abide by the rules.

"I fear there will be another short-term local lockdown," Cllr Birtwistle said. "I think the government are thinking of things like this. That will not do the economy of Burnley any good."

On Wednesday, the North East had a social lockdown introduced making it illegal to meet with other households in any indoor setting whilst recommending that people also avoid mixing outdoors.

East Lancashire could potentially see similar measures put into place should the numbers continue to rise.