Surge in Covid-19 cases across the Scarborough borough in past week

A surge in coronavirus cases has been reported in Scarborough.

Wednesday, 9th September 2020, 1:29 pm
Updated Wednesday, 9th September 2020, 1:32 pm

The number of people to have tested positive for disease in the borough has been rising more steeply than has been seen for months.

According to Government figures, on August 31 there had been 578 confirmed cases reported across Scarborough, Whitby and Filey.

As of yesterday afternoon, that figure was 609.

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A string of businesses in Whitby shut their doors over the weekend, with some citing a “spike” in coronavirus cases in the area.

Some had staff who were showing coronavirus symptoms or had been in touch with people who had tested positive. Others closed as a precautionary measure.

The Scarborough branch of the Halifax bank reopened today after being closed for over a week because a staff member had tested positive for the disease.

A deep clean was carried out and some staff were advised to self-isolate as a precaution.

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Across the UK, reported cases of the disease have also been rising and the Government announced a law-change banning social gatherings of more than six.

The rule - enforceable with a £100 fine - does not apply to schools, workplaces or Covid-secure weddings, funerals and organised team sports.

Scarborough and Whitby’s MP Robert Goodwill said, nationally, the trend has been for a rise in cases in younger people.

He urged everyone, especially young people, to make sure they are adhering to social distancing advice.

"It may be that young people don't exhibit the worst symptoms but they can pass the virus on to their grandparents and other vulnerable members of their families,” he said.

He reassured people that Scarborough is not at the point where a local lockdown is being considered.

Dr Lincoln Sargeant, North Yorkshire’s Director of Public Health, said Scarborough has seen the second highest rise in North Yorkshire, with most of the recent cases reported in Whitby.

He said the number of North Yorkshire residents admitted to hospital remains low and no deaths have been reported since July 20.

Increases have been seen across the county, but particularly in the Selby, Scarborough and Harrogate districts.

The week from September 1 to 7 saw 129 new cases in North Yorkshire, including 28 in the Harrogate district, 31 in Scarborough district and 36 in Selby district.

A spokesperson for Scarborough Borough Council said: “We are aware of new clusters of confirmed coronavirus cases in the Whitby area linked to staff working at a number of hospitality businesses.

“The businesses affected have temporarily closed and our environmental health team is liaising closely with them to make sure they know exactly what to do before they are safe to re-open.

“We are aware of a few other businesses in the Whitby area not directly affected by cases of Covid-19 that have taken their own decision to close as a precautionary measure, but otherwise Whitby remains very much open for business.”

North Yorkshire County Council Leader Councillor Carl Les said: “We are seeing an escalation in the number of cases. While this remains lower than in some neighbouring towns and cities, such as Middlesbrough and Leeds, there is no room for complacency."

Meanwhile, two more Whitby businesses which shut at the weekend have announced they are reopening.

Tea room Stokers, on Mulgrave Place, shut on Saturday as a preventative step, citing a “sudden spike” in cases locally.

They posted on social media yesterday: “We have had no staff members with symptoms but felt it was important to protect our families, staff and customers by having a deep clean and ensuring that we have sufficient procedures in place.

“After careful consideration we are ready to reopen tomorrow at 9am, we will of course be closely monitoring the local situation and will be adhering to the guidelines set by Public Health England.”

And the Dalewood Trust has said the Coliseum Cafe will also reopen today. It posted: “The cafe has had a thorough deep clean and all staff tested negative for Covid-19.”