EAST LANCASHIRE has recorded a 91 per cent surge in Coronavirus infection, new data shows.

The latest figures for Blackburn with Darwen, Burnley, Hyndburn, Ribble Valley, Rossendale and Pendle showed 5,622 positive cases between the towns in the week leading up to Christmas Day.

In the following week leading up to New Year's Day, those towns combined had 10,766 cases - a 91 per cent increase.

The figures, for the seven days to January 1, are based on the number of people who have tested positive for Covid-19 in a lab-reported test, plus positive rapid lateral flow tests that do not have a negative confirmatory lab-based polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test within 72 hours.

Data for the most recent four days (January 2-5) has been excluded as it is incomplete and does not reflect the true number of cases.

Of the 377 local areas in the UK, 345 (92 per cent) have seen a week-on-week rise in rates and 32 (8 per cent) have seen a fall.

East Lancashire data in full:

It reads, from left to right: name of local authority; rate of new cases in the seven days to January 1; number (in brackets) of new cases recorded in the seven days to January 1; rate of new cases in the seven days to December 25; number (in brackets) of new cases recorded in the seven days to December 25.

  1. Blackburn with Darwen: 1859.0, (2789), 983.1, (1475)
  2. Burnley: 2215.0, (1979), 1021.9, (913)
  3. Hyndburn: 2148.3, (1743), 993.4, (806)
  4. Rossendale: 1854.9, (1325), 1219.3, (871)
  5. Ribble Valley: 2120.1, (1315), 1325.3, (822)
  6. Pendle:1752.7, (1615), 797.7, (735)

The Prime Minister has insisted Plan B restrictions were “helping to take the edge off the Omicron wave” as Downing Street said more than 20 NHS trusts had been put on the highest alert level.

Boris Johnson told MPs he had been right to resist bringing in stricter Covid measures before Christmas, after the Cabinet agreed to keep the existing domestic restrictions in place, while easing travel testing rules.

But hospital admissions continued to rise, along with case rates, as staffing shortages hit the NHS.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said on Wednesday afternoon (January 5) that more than 20 trusts had now declared a critical incident - including Morecambe and Blackpool - where priority services may be under threat, but he insisted this was “not a good indicator” of the pressures the health service was under.