Norfolk sees 283 new Covid cases in a day

Dr Louise Smith, director of public health for Norfolk. Picture: Norfolk County Council

Dr Louise Smith, director of public health for Norfolk. Picture: Norfolk County Council - Credit: Norfolk County Council

The seriousness of the second wave of Covid in Norfolk is today made clear after 283 new cases were recorded in one day.

The county's director of public health, Dr Louise Smith, revealed the figure as she pleaded with people to be cautious over Christmas - or face a post-festive spike in infections.

Dr Smith warned that any mixing of households over the festive period would drive the number of coronavirus cases.

Speaking on Radio Norfolk, she said: "The headline advice is just because you can doesn't mean you must or should and please do think very carefully about what you're going to do and whether it is the best choice for you.

"We're seeing from the data the biggest risk is the mixing of households which is why in Tier Two, outside the Christmas period, households should not mix indoors.

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"It's also worth thinking about who that group is: if anyone feels unwell, is under the weather then perhaps it's not the best idea." 

She added: "As numbers get higher we're more exposed to the virus and also its the middle of winter. The cold weather is against us. I really do think we need to hang on over the next month or two.

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"As the days get longer, the weather gets better as vaccinations start to get rolled out the numbers will start to come down again but from where we're sitting just now we think they will go up before they go down."

She said she had decided not to visit her father, who is in his 80s, until the spring by which time she hoped he would have had a vaccination.

She also supported the government's decision to stagger the return of pupils to secondary schools.

Meanwhile, Dr Smith said the county was seeing a general rise in coronavirus cases in, with Great Yarmouth and King's Lynn two areas of particular concern.

She said: "We're seeing a steady rise and have been seeing that since the beginning of December. Yesterday we were notified of 283 new cases. We should be taking that very seriously.

We're particularly keeping an eye on Great Yarmouth and King's Lynn. Both of those areas have now have a seven day rate of over 150 per 100,000.

"There's not a single explanation in either of those areas. We're seeing more cases when we see outbreaks and as ever quite a number of the outbreaks are being detected in schools or places like care homes, but I think the message is we're seeing a general rise." 

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