One more Wealden resident has died from Covid-19, according to the latest seven-day figures issued yesterday (December 8).
The data was published at about the same time as a surprise social media post from East Sussex County Council which warned residents that Covid-19 cases were rising in the county and asking people to only leave home if essential.
The latest Wealden Covid-19 death was in hospital and takes the district’s total to 140 since the pandemic began.
In the previous seven days, four people died from the Coronavirus.
However, during the height of the first wave, 46 people died in a three-week period in April.
East Sussex County Council’s message
East Sussex published the following information on its Twitter feed yesterday morning (December 8). A similar post appeared on its Facebook page.
The previous day (Monday), East Sussex public health department announced via social media that the seven-day total of infections for the county was 510 and 24 hours later said the total was 560, prompting its request for people to leave their homes only if essential.
Regular readers of this website will know that we keep our own datasets relating to Covid-19 and monitor official releases of information every day, including weekends.
What’s happening in Uckfield and nearby villages?
Normally, we report infection numbers on a Monday but make an exception today because of the county council statement.
Our figures, updated with the latest data on Tuesday afternoon, show that the number of Coronavirus cases is declining on a seven-day rolling average in the whole of Uckfield and the surrounding communities.
We reported on Monday that it appeared that numbers in Wealden had seemed to plateau and that early trend has continued over the first two days of this week.
However, the numbers are high and above the England average in Heathfield and Hailsham North, which includes Alfriston and East Dean.
Hastings is the hotspot
One area of concern for county public health officials must be Hastings. The coastal town was once one of the lowest areas for Covid-19 infections in the whole country.
Sally-Ann Hart, the MP for Hastings and Rye, welcomed the first UK patients receiving the Covid-19 vaccine but went on to say:
“However, we cannot let up on our discipline in following the Covid-19 guidance and restrictions.
“In recent days there has been a sustained and sharp rise in the infection rate in Hastings and Rother.
“In the last four days alone, we have jumped from 69 per 100,000 to 114 per 100,000, with no sign of levelling off.
“Local health officials are deeply anxious that a rapid rise of infections is now highly likely unless we get control of the virus locally.
“If these rises continue our area is now teetering towards Tier Three.”
The worry for areas in East Sussex, where there is a falling incidence of Covid-19 infections, is that the high numbers in the south east of the county will propel everyone into Tier 3 – when the recent Tiers were announced, they were done on a county-by-county basis.
Thames Estuary coast
It meant in Kent, for example, Tunbridge Wells went into Tier 3 mainly on the back of very high numbers along the Thames Estuary coast in the districts of Swale and Medway.
However, the Government has indicated it might look for a more “granular” approach when the Tiers are reviewed on December 16. Any changes would come into force on December 19.
East Sussex is in Tier 2 at present. Details of the restrictions are here.[external link]
Mobile testing station in Uckfield
A mobile Covid-19 testing station will be established in Uckfield next week and the week after Christmas.
Dates given to Uckfield Town Council at a meeting on Monday (December 7) by county councillor Claire Dowling were:
- December 14, 15 and 16; and
- December 29, 30 and 31.
Appointments will be necessary, if the current way of working at East Sussex testing sites continues.
Get a free NHS test to check if you have coronavirus [external link]