THE number of new coronavirus cases in Cheshire West and Chester has hit its lowest rate since August 2020.

Latest Government data shows that, despite the relaxing of Covid restrictions and increased testing as pupils return to schools following the Easter break, the seven-day infection rate continues to fall in the borough.

In the seven days up to April 16 – the latest figures available – a total of 36 new cases were confirmed in Cheshire West and Chester residents, giving an infection rate of 10.5.

That is the lowest infection rate since August 31, and a long way down from the peak of 625.9.

Of the 36 cases, 34 were in those aged 0-59 (infection rate 13.7), and two were in those aged 60 and above (infection rate 2.1).

Those getting a PCR Covid test in the borough now have about a one in 200 chance it will be positive. Back in early January, one in every six PCR Covid tests was positive.

Although the number of rapid lateral flow tests has dipped slightly during the Easter break, there were still nearly 30,000 tests carried out from April 10-16 in the borough.

The last recorded Covid patient death at the Countess of Chester Hospital Trust was on April 10. A total of 617 Covid patients have sadly died at the hospital trust since the start of the pandemic.

Across the UK, 62.9 per cent of people have now received their first Covid vaccine, while 20.5 per cent have received both doses.