Rugbeians urged to help to stop the need for a new local lockdown - household transmission blamed for Rugby increases

Household transmission has been blamed for the increase in coronavirus cases in Rugby as authorities urge residents to take action

Rugby Town Hall.
Rugby Town Hall.

Warwickshire Public Health and Rugby Borough Council are urging Rugbeians to 'play their part' to stop the need for a local lockdown, following a rise in cases in the borough in recent weeks.

Residents are asked to make sure they wash their hands regularly, keep at least two metres from those they do not live with and wear a face covering in enclosed spaces such as in shops and on public transport.

In recent weeks, the number of cases per 100,000 of the population in the Borough had risen to close to 70.

That number is still lower than in other towns and cities that have seen restrictions imposed, including Birmingham, Manchester and Solihull.

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But a spokesperson for Rugby council said that if cases do not fall, the borough could be classed as an area of concern.

Being an ‘area of concern’ would mean that extra measures would be put in place to stop the spread.

Elsewhere this has included introducing a ban on different households mixing in homes and gardens and expanding use of face coverings to all enclosed public spaces.

Speaking about keeping Rugby residents safe, director of Public Health Warwickshire, Dr Shade Agboola said: “We have seen an increase of cases across Warwickshire over the last few weeks and whilst Warwickshire as a whole is lower than most comparable places, the infection rate in Rugby is still too high.

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"This is clearly of concern and something we want to get on top of before Rugby is named as an area of concern.

"It’s only through each and every one of us taking action to prevent further spread of this disease that we will stop Rugby going into any kind of lockdown measures.

“Household transmission has been identified as the main cause of the increase in cases in the borough, so keeping to the rule of six is essential.

"We have also seen an increase in cases in people visiting public houses and restaurants and we have been working closely with local businesses to ensure that people visiting the premises are adhering to the rules.

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“To reduce the rise in cases, the rules are simple, hands – wash your hands regularly, face – wear a face covering when asked to do so and keep your space from those you do not live with. Only by stepping up and taking responsibility for ourselves and each other can we reduce the number of cases in Rugby.”

Mannie Ketley, executive director for Rugby Borough Council, said: “We are grateful to all of our residents and businesses who remain vigilant and who are following the guidelines to keep the rate of transmission down.

“I want to reassure residents that we are working with partners across the region to do everything that we can to reduce the spread of the virus within our communities.

“This week we have provided a new walk-in test site for the Department of Health and Social Care to make sure that we have the testing capacity that we need in Rugby.

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“And, to protect the most vulnerable residents, Care Homes have been asked to close to visitors so that they continue to remain free of the virus.

“In the town centre our Community Wardens and environmental health teams are talking to residents and businesses about the steps that they can take to keep everyone safe.

“To keep doing the things we enjoy we must all follow the rules and continue to do what’s right for Rugby.”

To help protect communities and keep numbers from rising, please continue to:

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Wash your hands regularly and when that’s not possible use hand sanitiser

Keep at least 2 metres from people you don’t live with

Wear a face covering in enclosed places, on public transport and in shops unless you are exempt

Know the symptoms of COVID-19 and book a test as soon as symptoms appear

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Follow the rules and self-isolate if you have symptoms; if you have a positive COVID test or if you are asked to by the NHS Test and Trace service

Download the NHS Test and Trace App and leave your details when at social venues

For more information and advice on staying safe, visit: www.rugby.gov.uk/coronavirus.