Covid: Caerphilly lockdown to stay for at least another week

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Caerphilly county will stay under local lockdown for at least one more week, the Welsh Government has announced.

On 8 September, it became the first area in Wales to have restrictions imposed after a rise in Covid-19 cases.

Despite a drop in cases during since then, the Welsh Government said there was still "a way to go".

Five further counties have since gone into local lockdowns, while people across Wales have been asked to only make essential journeys.

Local lockdown rules mean people cannot enter or leave the county without a "reasonable excuse", while extended households are not allowed.

Public Health Wales reported 15 cases in Caerphilly on Thursday, at a rate of 8.3 per 100,000 people who live in the county.

There have been 64 cases over the past seven days.

In the week from 31 August to 6 September, two days before the county went into local lockdown, 171 people in the county tested positive for Covid-19.

Rhondda Cynon Taf, Bridgend, Blaenau Gwent, Merthyr Tydfil and Newport have since been placed under local lockdown.

On Thursday evening, Cardiff council's leader Huw Thomas warned the capital "could go into lockdown" after a rise in cases.

Covid-19 case rate changes. Rolling averages over seven days, per 100,000 people.  Up to 21 September, when some test results may be still outstanding.

Restrictions have also been tightened across Wales, with pubs now not allowed to serve alcohol after 22:00 BST.

Health Minister Vaughan Gething said: "Cases of coronavirus have declined steadily since the restrictions were introduced in Caerphilly borough two weeks ago.

"I would like to thank residents for all their hard work and their efforts to help control the spread of this infectious virus. Compliance with the restrictions has been very high.

"However, we still have some way to go. Rates of infection remain high in the borough - above the levels we would want to see.

"After discussing the situation with the local authority, we have decided to leave the restrictions in place for at least a further seven days."

Philippa Marsden, leader of Caerphilly council, said: "It is clear that we are seeing positive signs of progress, but we are not out of the woods yet.

"I would like to thank each and every one of our residents and the business community for continuing to adhere to these guidelines.

"We know it hasn't been easy, however, the data shows that the picture is looking positive and the infection rate is falling."