Covid: Illegal Swansea house partygoers criticised

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People have been urged not to break Covid rules by attending illegal parties

Revellers who partied illegally misled contact-tracers after their actions led to positive Covid-19 cases.

At least six people who went to the gathering at Derwen Fawr, in Swansea, this month tested positive for Covid-19 and 13 are being tested.

"That [this case] needed a concerted investigation by officials to get to the bottom of it is shocking," said public health director Dr Keith Reid.

Officials have renewed pleas for people to behave responsibly.

Organisers of large gatherings both indoors or outdoors and those who plan to attend them have been told not to do so.

Efforts to track everyone connected to the Swansea party were thwarted by partygoers claiming they had not been in the city and that the party took place elsewhere.

Residents at the house at first also denied it had happened, prompting further investigations that involved police.

Dr Reid, of Swansea Bay health board, said: "The behaviour demonstrated by the individuals in this case is extremely disappointing.

"We're currently aware of six positive cases, and at least 13 contacts with connections to the gathering," said Dr Keith Reid, Swansea Bay heath director

"Not only did their decision to hold a party put others at risk, but they made matters worse by then misleading contact tracers."

Environmental health staff eventually confirmed the party had taken place on 10 April, after working with South Wales Police.

The close timing of four positive coronavirus cases, two men and two women, raised suspicions of an indoor gathering.

But Swansea Test Trace Protect teams' efforts to discover more were frustrated by misleading information.

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Dr Keith Reid was "disappointed" by revellers' behaviour

Dr Reid said: "The misleading information provided by some people in this case had a detrimental effect on both the speed of the investigation, and the tracers' ability to identify exact routes of transmission and protect the public.

"This caused the potential for further spread within the community and placed the wider community at risk.

The party follows earlier indoor social gatherings in the Clase and Briton Ferry areas, which led to a chain of Covid-19 infections.

Although infection rates in Swansea are improving overall, the city remains top of the league table in Wales for confirmed cases.

Dr Reid said it was important people continued to follow the rules as "we haven't beaten coronavirus yet."