Coronavirus infection rates are rising in seven boroughs of Greater Manchester, with one area seeing a significant jump in cases.
The latest figures from Public Health England show that cases have risen by 20 per cent in Tameside in the seven days ending March 11.
Political leaders, including the mayor of Greater Manchester, suggest this is likely to be connected to the return of schools on March 8.
Pupils across the country are being asked to test themselves for Covid-19 several times a week – which is being linked to a rise in cases.
Andy Burnham tweeted today (Monday): “For those wondering what’s going on, we did predict last week that the school testing regime would have this effect on the figures.
“No room for complacency of course, and overall the figures are still too high, but an explanation that people may find helpful.”
Rochdale now has the highest coronavirus infection rate in Greater Manchester, replacing Tameside.
The borough recorded a rate of 122.7 cases per 100,000 people in the week ending March 11, according to the latest data from Public Health England.
Across the country, cases are still falling week-on-week.
The national average for England is currently 58.4 cases per 100,000 people – a lower rate than any borough in Greater Manchester.
Trafford currently has the lowest infection rate across the conurbation, with 64.9 cases per 100,000 in the week ending March 11.
In Greater Manchester as a whole, the infection rate is 95.0 cases per 100,000 population.
A total of 2,695 people tested positive for coronavirus across Greater Manchester in the week which ended on March 11.
The Greater Manchester weekly total has increased by 92 cases compared to the previous week, which means the infection rate was up 4 per cent in the last week.
In Salford, the latest infection rate is 108.2 cases per 100,000 people. The number of Coronavirus cases has gone up by 12 per cent week-on-week.
A total of 280 people tested positive for Covid in Salford over the seven days ending on March 11, which is 29 more than the week before.
In Manchester, the number of cases rose by three per cent compared to the previous week, with 89.7 cases per 100,000 people.
There were 496 positive Covid-19 tests in Manchester in the week ending March 11, which was 15 more than the previous seven days.
Oldham recorded 230 coronavirus cases in the same time period, which is 31 more than in the previous week.
The latest infection rate in Oldham is 97.0 cases per 100,000 people – up 16 per cent week-on-week.
Trafford, which has the lowest infection rate in the region, recorded 154 positive Covid-19 tests in the week ending March 11, which is 13 more than the previous seven days.
The coronavirus infection rate in Trafford is now 64.9 cases per 100,000 people and is up by nine per cent week-on-week.
Bury is still seeing a downward trend in the number of cases. The latest infection rate here is 76.4 cases per 100,000 people.
There were 146 cases recorded in Bury, which is 21 fewer than the previous week – a fall of 13 per cent.
Bolton saw a fall of 14 per cent in the week ending March 11, and the infection rate there is now 90.8 cases per 100,000 population.
The borough recorded 261 positive Covid-19 tests over the latest seven-day period – 43 fewer than the previous week.
There were 266 positive tests over the last week in Tameside, which is 45 more than in the previous week.
The week-on-week trend in Tameside is up by 20 per cent and the latest infection rate is 117.4 cases per 100,000 people.
The infection rate in Rochdale is up slightly compared with the previous day and the week-on-week trend is up by three per cent.
The trend is down in Wigan, where there were 318 positive Covid-19 tests in the week ending March 11.
That is down by 1 per cent compared to the previous week.
The latest infection rate in Wigan is 96.8 cases per 100,000 people, which is higher than the national average.
Stockport saw a total of 271 cases in the week ending March 11, which is 17 more than the previous week. That is a rise of seven per cent.
In Stockport, the most recent coronavirus infection rate is now 92.4 cases per 100,000 people.