THE coronavirus in Ludlow and south Shropshire has not gone away and is still claiming lives.

But the numbers are stable in the county ahead of the planned further easing of restrictions scheduled for Monday, June 21.

However, there has been a jump in the number of cases.

For the last week in which figures are available there were 23 new cases reported in Shropshire, up nearly 10 per cent on the previous week.

But the seven day infection rate for the county was just over seven per 100,000 that is low. Compared with the average in the West Midlands at 20 per 100,000 and a national figure of 29 per 100,000, Shropshire remains relatively virus free.

The increase in the number of cases in Shropshire was not reflected in people in hospital with the virus as in the week under review no hospital beds were being occupied by Covid-19 patients.

There was one death during the seven day period involving a Covid-19 diagnosis.

“The Delta variant B.1.617.2, first identified in India, is still spreading rapidly and has become a dominant strain in some areas, including Telford & Wrekin, where there has been a significant rise in cases in the last week,” said Dean Carroll, Shropshire Council’s cabinet member for public health.

“If you do have symptoms of Covid-19, please self-isolate immediately and book a PCR test. If you do not have symptoms, you should continue to test twice a week using a rapid home test.

“We know the vaccine is effective against the new variant of the virus and significantly reduces chances of getting seriously ill.”