Coronavirus: More than 60 cases linked to charity football match
More than 60 people have tested positive for coronavirus following a charity football match.
A further 33 people have now contracted the virus amid an outbreak linked to the event at Burnside Working Men’s Club in Fencehouses, on the border of County Durham and the City of Sunderland.
Officials first said 28 people caught COVID-19 following the match on 30 August, and they urged around 300 people who attended to self-isolate until midnight on 13 September.
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The latest confirmed cases bring the total to 61.
NHS figures showed Sunderland has one of the highest coronavirus infection rates in England.
The city had 209 confirmed cases in seven days up to 7 September – at a rate of 75.3 cases per 100,000.
It is just behind Bolton which has the highest UK infection rate of 129 cases per 100,000 and Birmingham with a rate of 85.4 cases per 100,000.
On Wednesday, restrictions were introduced in Bolton to curb the rise, including only allowing takeaways and limiting nightlight.
Today, it was announced that households in Birmingham and neighbouring Sandwell and Solihull would be banned from meeting from next Tuesday.
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Amanda Healy, director of public health at Durham County Council, said: “We were aware that a large number of people are believed to have attended the event so we always expected the number of cases to rise.
“We would like to thank everyone who has responded so far to our call to self-isolate if they were present at the club on August 30, and to those who have sought a test when appropriate.
“We would like to reiterate that our initial advice remains the same in that anyone who attended the event should self-isolate for 14 days from that date unless they’re contacted individually by NHS Test and Trace with further advice.”
Gillian Gibson, director of public health at Sunderland City Council, said: “We are seeing increases in the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Sunderland particularly in the Houghton area, so it’s incredibly important that people continue to follow public health guidance.”
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