Tees Valley added to government's coronvirus watchlist

The areas that make up the Tees Valley have been listed as areas of enhanced support Credit: PA Images

All five local authority areas that make up the Tees Valley are now on the government's coronavirus watchlist.

Hartlepool, Middlesbrough, Stockton-on-Tees, Darlington and Redcar & Cleveland have all been escalated to become areas of enhanced support.

South Tyneside, Gateshead, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, Sunderland, North Tyneside, Northumberland and County Durham remain as areas of intervention.

Matt Hancock, the Health Secretary, said cases were continuing to rise in the north east and that the government was prepared to take "swift and decisive" action.

He said: "We continue to see an acceleration of COVID-19 cases across the country, especially in the North West and the North East.

"Working alongside our scientific and public health experts and local leaders, we are prepared to take swift and decisive action to reduce transmission of the virus and protect communities.

“I recognise the burden and impact these additional measures have on our daily lives but we must act collectively and quickly to bring down infections.

“We all have a part to play and I urge everyone to isolate and get a test if you have symptoms, follow the advice of NHS Test and Trace, and always remember ‘hands, face, space’.”

The Department for Health and Social Care said discussions were ongoing with local leaders about potential further measures.

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