We are in the last chance saloon – we need to obey the rules or go into further lockdown.”

This is the stark message from health and council leaders as new figures for today show that Bury has the 13th highest coronavirus infection rate in England.

While rates across Greater Manchester are dropping, Bury’s continues to rise – and is now three times the national average.

Councillor Andrea Simpson, cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: “This is the sixth weekly rise in a row in Bury, and we are now firmly in the Government’s sights. Unless this infection rate comes down immediately, we may be placed into the sort of extra measures that Oldham and Blackburn were, and possibly more.

“Too many people are not wearing masks in shops, are still meeting up in large groups from several households, and not keeping two metres apart.

“A few then catch the virus, and bring it home to spread among their families.

“It has to stop, and now. We simply must take responsibility for our own actions. I urge everyone – residents, families and businesses – to obey the law and follow the guidance, or we may be be put into lockdown.”

The latest figures reveal that there were 67 confirmed new cases in the week ending 22 August – up from 63 the previous week, and 51 the week before that.

The 7-day infection rate in Bury is now 35.2 per 100,000 population, up from 33.1 last week and 26.8 previously.

The largest number of new cases was recorded in Whitefield, but cases are spread out evenly across all five neighbourhood areas across the borough.

Household transmission remains an important source of new infections, as people spread the virus they caught in the community to their families.

Those aged 18-39 account for more than half of the new cases in Bury, and the percentage of positive tests has also increased.


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