Coronavirus: Six new areas added to England’s watchlist

Six areas in England have been added to the coronavirus watchlist and two have been removed.

The places added to the list of “areas of concern” for coronavirus are:

  • Barrow-in-Furness
  • Cheshire West and Chester
  • Cheshire East
  • Wakefield, West Yorkshire
  • Rotherham. South Yorkshire
  • Luton in Bedfordshire is once again on the list

A place on the watchlist means restrictions could be considered soon.

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Spelthorne in Surrey and Hertsmere in Hertfordshire have been removed from the watchlist.

Sheffield, meanwhile, now has a more serious status as an “area of enhanced support” – meaning it will get access to extra resources.

Blaby in Leicestershire has been de-escalated from an “area of enhanced support” to an “area of concern”.

This is alongside the tougher rules for Liverpool, Warrington, Hartlepool and Middlesbrough announced earlier in the day.

The Department of Health says that levels of infection are being constantly monitored, and that it “is prepared to take immediate action should the epidemiological evidence show that further measures are required.”

“Restrictions will only apply for as long as they are necessary to cut transmission of the virus and protect local communities.”

Where areas are added onto the watchlist, Public Health England will help communities take action, including with targeted testing of high risk areas and enhanced messaging around hand-washing and social-distancing.

The changes to the watchlist come on the same day that the UK recorded 6,914 coronavirus cases – a slight fall on the day before.

In other announcements, Turkey and Poland have been removed as travel corridors for England, meaning travellers arriving from the 4 October from those countries must self-isolate for 14 days.

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