THIS interactive map reveals how bad coronavirus infections are in your area as experts warn we will “never eradicate” the illness.
Government scientists today claimed that changing social distancing rules to three metres would have “little impact” on controlling the spread of the new variant.
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Data from Public Health England (PHE) shows that of the 315 local areas in England, 71 per cent have seen a rise in cases and 28 per cent have seen a fall.
A rise in cases earlier this year prompted the government to enforce a third national lockdown, after a new variant of the virus was discovered in the South.
The virus is believed to be more than 70 per cent transmissible in comparison to other variants and in part was responsible for the third lockdown.
Professor Jonathan Van-Tam today admitted that the coronavirus will likely never be eradicated – and warned Brits are facing a “very dangerous time”.
Prof Van-Tam told LBC Radio: “The question you are asking is whether the new variant is really going to be capable of moving a greater distance, and that doesn’t kind of fit with my biological understanding, because the distance relates to the force of the cough or the sneeze or the respiratory droplet that flies out of you.
“Unless we were saying that the variant makes you cough in a different way or cough more violently, I can’t see how you can gain that extra distance, like in the long jump as it were.”
People have been urged to stay at home in order to stop the spread of the virus Credit: EPA
He added that the viral load of the new variant is probably higher than the last strain, which is why it is more infectious.
While cases in some areas seem to be levelling off other areas have seen sizeable week on week increases.
Barking & Dagenham in London continues to have the highest rate in England, with 3,451 new cases recorded in the seven days to January 8 – the equivalent of 1,620.9 cases per 100,000 people.
This is up slightly from 1,565.0 in the seven days to January 1.
Newham, also in London, has the second highest rate, up from 1,366.1 to 1,468.3, with 5,185 new cases.
Knowsley in Merseyside has the third highest rate, up sharply from 598.6 to 1,461.6, with 2,205 new cases.
Several other areas in the North West have also witnessed significant jumps.
Sefton has gone from 529.6 per 100,000 to 1,113.2, St Helens has gone from 391.0 to 866.1 and the Wirral has gone from 607.1 to 979.9.
Other areas that have also seen a rise include Tendring, which has jumped from 844 cases per 100,000 to 1,251.4.
In Worcester cases have jumped from 452.5 to 811.1 and in the Isle of Wight they have jumped from 810.5 to 1,162.4.
The tenth place on the list with the biggest jump is Bournemouth Christchurch & Poole, with a jump from 549.9 to 888.4.
Separate data also reveals that infections have soared by more than double in some parts of the UK.
Merseyside continues to see a worrying surge of cases, while parts of the West Midlands are also seeing a drastic change.
It appears the regions are overtaking the speed of the spread of the virus in the South and East of England, which has seen hospitals overwhelmed with Covid patients.
Steve Rotheram, mayor of Liverpool City Region, said on Monday recent Covid figures in the area were “sobering”.
“It’s clear that the virus is spreading very rapidly across the country, and worryingly so for the North West and in particular the Liverpool City Region”, he said.
Daily case numbers have shown a slight improvement since Brits were told to “stay at home” once again.
A staggering 45,533 people were confirmed to have the virus yesterday. But this is a third lower than the 60,916 reported a week ago, on January 5.
But because of a time lag between the date a person is infected and becoming seriously unwell, hospital admissions and deaths are expected to keep rising.
More than 4,000 people have been admitted to hospitals across the UK per day in the last three days.
The NHS is under extraordinary pressure with the number of Covid-19 patients in hospital in England at a record 32,202 as of 8am on Tuesday – up 22 per cent on a week ago, and 82 per cent since Christmas Day.
The Health Secretary Matt Hancock was asked this morning if the UK has now hit the peak of this wave, as some data may suggest.
He told BBC Breakfast: “Well, I want it to be.
“But again, that comes down to the behaviour of everyone.
“Together we can make this the peak if enough people follow the rules, which are incredibly clear.”
Pressed again on if this was the peak, he said: “Well we don’t know, we published the data every day. I hope that it is.”
Mr Hancock admitted it was “impossible to say” when the crippling lockdown will end, with no set date.
“We will keep the restrictions in place not a moment longer than they are necessary, but we will keep them in place as long as they are necessary, he added.