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Where next for local lockdown? Use our tracker to find out

We're using the latest data on Covid-19 cases across Britain to track and predict local lockdowns.

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The UK’s strategy to suppress a nationwide resurgence of Covid-19 is to identify at a local level where cases are rising, and to contain these smaller outbreaks with lockdown measures. This “whack-a-mole" approach, as the Prime Minister has described it, looks set to be a feature of life in the UK as we await the development and production of a vaccine.

When the government brought this strategy to bear on Greater Manchester and parts of West Yorkshire and Lancashire in July, it did so with only a few hours' notice. While there is no doubt that these measures are necessary, the sudden announcement was said by the Greater Manchester Combined Authority to have caused "confusion and distress" as new rules were applied to millions of people.

The information displayed on this page seeks to help people identify whether their area is at risk of a local lockdown by displaying the latest available data on confirmed cases.

We've given each area a “local lockdown risk rating” of low, medium or high, updated each day, based on the per capita number of confirmed Covid-19 cases across a seven-day rolling average compared to the previous week.

 


The data used in this table covers confirmed active cases of Covid-19 where testing was conducted in hospitals (Pillar 1) and in the wider community (Pillar 2). It does not include antibody tests.

There is no official guidance on the threshold of cases required to trigger a local lockdown, and data availability on a local authority level is not what it could be. However, it is possible to see where cases are rising, and to infer from this which areas are at risk of local lockdown.

Areas with high and increasing rates of infection are most likely to face localised restrictions. We can say this based on the infection patterns of other areas, such as Leicester and Luton, where local lockdowns have been implemented. Oldham's curve is a good example.

 


A rising rate of infection does not guarantee that an area will be placed under lockdown, and areas that have lower levels of infection may face more restrictions. For example, every borough in Greater Manchester is included in the tougher restrictions despite fewer confirmed cases in some areas. 

While it is useful to compare the number of confirmed cases on a local level, the data made available by the government does not include the number of tests carried out. This means that an increase in positive cases doesn’t necessarily mean an increase in disease prevalence; it could simply reflect an increase in the number of tests carried out. 

As such, these figures shouldn’t be read as a definitive measure of the prevalence of Covid-19 in a given area, but a guide to show which areas are approaching similar confirmed infection numbers to areas that have already been placed in lockdown. 

 

For the latest information about the local lockdowns that are in force visit this page on the Department for Health and Social Care's website.

With thanks to Josh Rayman and Georges Corbineau for the interactive table.

Patrick Scott is the data projects editor for the New Statesman Media Group