Doncaster has reported another two coronavirus deaths amid fears the town could be placed into lockdown.
The latest figures take the total death toll in the South Yorkshire town to 223.
New Covid-19 cases in the area continue to rise, which has raised concerns that Doncaster could follow Leicester by imposing a local lockdown.
Figures show there were 11 new coronavirus cases in Doncaster between June 13-19, which more than doubled the following week.
Between June 20-26, 32 new infections in the town were confirmed, taking the total to 950.
Doncaster was the only place in South Yorkshire to record new coronavirus deaths today and is second behind Leicester as an area that has seen a worrying spike.
Leicester’s flare-up means it will not emerge from parts of lockdown as swiftly as the rest of England on July 4, when pubs, restaurants, hairdresses and other non-essential businesses will reopen.
It is feared the same could happen in Doncaster if the recent spike in cases continues.
But, Dr Rupert Suckling, Director of Public Health at Doncaster Council, said he is not concerned yet about any potential lockdown in the town.
“More data is now becoming available nationally and this will be open to scrutiny and speculation,” he said. “Since the reporting of both pillar 1 and pillar 2 testing we have seen a high number of positive cases beginning with the week 25th to 31st May and this coincided with widespread testing in our care homes where we identified a number of asymptomatic positive cases.
“We have also seen cases in health and care workers, with sporadic cases in schools.
“However, the weekly testing from the week 8th -14th June shows a significant reduction.
“We are not complacent and encourage everyone with symptoms to self-isolate and arrange to be tested.
“We are working closely with the local Public Health England centre which has not raised any concerns with us.
“The advice about hand washing, keeping our distance and following guidance is still paramount and will help to manage infection outbreaks.”
Conservative Don Valley MP Nick Fletcher said he had discussed the reporting with Public Health England and had been reassured the figures were due to an increase in testing, specifically the “pillar 2” testing, which is carried out by private labs.
He told The Yorkshire Post : “The increase in numbers was due to the increase in testing, we’re still testing at these high levels now and there’s been a significant reduction in cases but we can’t be complacent, the last thing we want to see is a rise.”
New figures show 36 cities or counties across England are seeing a fresh rise in lab-confirmed cases, meaning infections are rising in almost one in four cities and counties.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said yesterday that “of course” the Government was looking at similar places but said the outbreak in Leicester was “very significantly worse” than the next worst-hit place.
Areas with a rise in coronavirus cases
The 36 authorities in England which have seen coronavirus case rises in recent weeks are, in alphabetical order:
- Barking and Dagenham
- Hammersmith and Fulham
- Isle of Wight
- Kensington and Chelsea
- Milton Keynes
- Redcar and Cleveland
- Richmond upon Thames
- Tower Hamlets
- Windsor and Maidenhead