Coronavirus: Live updates as it's confirmed 41 people in the West Country contract COVID-19

Public Health England have announced today [March 10] that there are now 41 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the South West.

According to the latest figures, there are coronavirus cases in Bristol, Tetbury, Cheltenham, Somerset, Wiltshire, Swindon, Devon, Torbay and Cornwall.

The total number in the UK has now soared to 373 - with the South West third on the list of regions with the most positive cases - behind London with 91 and the South East with 51.

Two GP surgeries in Devon will be closed until at least 16 March to control the spread of coronavirus, as four cases are confirmed in the West Country.

Plymouth's court complex also remains closed - a day after a defendant in the dock displayed 'flu-like' symptoms.

Gloucestershire had the first confirmed cases in the South West, with Devon following closely behind. Chief Medical Officer Professor Chris Whitty confirmed two cases in Tetbury on March 1, adding the Devon case on Monday, March 2.

Latest updates

  • Tuesday 10 March - 2:15pm

Public Health England have confirmed there are 41 cases of Covid19 in the South West, a jump of three from yesterday.

It's not yet known where the three additional cases are.

  • Tuesday 10 March - 10:30am

Prestbury Park opened its gates to thousands of racegoers for the first day of this year's Cheltenham Festival.

Organisers have laid on extra toilets and hand washing facilities to try to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Over the next four days hundreds of horses will pass through the stables at the racecourse.

The famous Cheltenham Festival opened it doors to welcome thousands of racegoers Credit: PA Images
  • Friday 6 March - 3:33pm

I can confirm that one adult in Swindon has tested positive for coronavirus after returning from Northern Italy, and they have self-isolated.

Sue Wald, Corporate Director of Adult Social Services and Health at Swindon Borough Council

The adult became infected while in Northern Italy.

  • Friday 6 March - 2:53pm

Bristol City Council and Public Health England has confirmed the first case of COVID-19 in Bristol

The Bristol resident was infected in northern Italy and has been self-isolating since returning.

The case is a resident of Bristol and became infected whilst in North Italy. Close contacts will be given health advice about symptoms and emergency contact details to use if they become unwell in the 14 days after contact with the confirmed case.

Debra Lapthorne, Centre Director, Public Health England South West

Together with our local health partners we have been fully prepared for a case of COVID-19 in Bristol. This is not unexpected and we are well equipped to deal with this situation.

Christina Gray, Director of Public Health for Bristol City Council
  • Friday 6 March - 1:10pm

East Devon District Council has closed its offices at Blackdown House in Honiton to the public, today [ March 6].

The council say its a precautionary measure due to a possible case of coronavirus in a member of staff, returning from a high risk country.

The authority go onto say the staff member is displaying potential symptoms and although the risk is very low, they are taking the correct measures.

All members of staff have been sent home and the majority will be able to continue working remotely. The offices will be thoroughly cleansed, according to recommended guidelines, over the weekend and they anticipate reopening early next week.

East Devon District Council say they will continue to provide services and apologises for any inconvenience caused to customers.

  • Friday 6 March - 1:00pm

A church in Devon has been closed after a parishioner was diagnosed with coronavirus, the Church of England have confirmed.

The churchgoer tested positive for Covid-19 after attending the Holy Communion service at St Mary's Church in the town of Churston Ferrers on Sunday.

Today [March 6], the church was temporarily closed for a deep clean while members of the congregation have been told to contact Public Health England for advice.

Other parishioners who might feel unwell, have a cough, a high temperature or are short of breath have been instructed to phone NHS 111.

The Church of England said it was offering "full support" to those involved.

The coronavirus situation is being kept under continual review by the Church of England nationally and all those with responsibility for church worship and activities in the Diocese of Exeter are being asked to regularly check the official guidance available on the Church of England website.

Church of England Spokeswoman

We, as a church, are here to support people both spiritually and practically, to listen to concerns if they are worried and to affirm and confirm the official health guidance.

Reverend Professor Gina Radford, South Devon Vicar
  • Thursday 5 March - 5:09pm

Three residents in Wiltshire have tested positive for coronavirus, Wiltshire Council and Public Health England South West have confirmed.

The resident are believed to have become infected whilst in Northern Italy.

I can confirm that three adults have been notified as having coronavirus and are self-isolating at home. The three cases are known to each other and are linked following a trip to Northern Italy.

Tracy Daszkiewicz, Director of Public Health for Wiltshire Council
  • Thursday 5 March 5:00pm

A resident in Cornwall has also tested positive for Coronavirus, Cornwall council and Public Health England South West have confirmed.

The resident is believed to have become infected whilst in Northern Italy.

Public Health England is contacting people who had close contact with resident of Cornwall.

Professor Debra Lapthorne, Centre Director, Public Health England South West

I’d like to reassure people that the risk to the general public remains low and Cornwall Council is working with health colleagues to do everything we can to stop the virus spreading and ensure the people of Cornwall are protected.

Steve Brown, Cornwall Council’s Deputy Director of Public Health
  • Wednesday 4 March - 4.45pm

'A number of new coronavirus cases' confirmed in Torbay, according to Public Health England South West.

It is reported that the new COVID-19 cases are residents from the Torbay area.

It comes as the total number of UK cases jumps to 85.

  • Wednesday 4 March - 4:05pm

The man was based at Bridgewater House in Finzels Reach during the time he worked for EDF. Credit: Bristol Live

Public Health England have confirmed earlier reports a Chinese national working for EDF in Bristol has tested positive for coronavirus.

The 35-year-old man, who has not been named, was diagnosed with the infection after flying to Hong Kong last week.

Upon his return home, it was confirmed by the Chinese government that he was suffering from COVID-19.

Hinkley Point and EDF Energy are working with Public Health England to trace all the people who may have come into contact with the individual concerned. You can read more on this here.

Authorities in China report that the person did not have symptoms whilst in the UK, so the risk to other people in the UK is considered to be very low.

Public Health England

Public Health England has advised that there is a very low risk to Hinkley Point C employees or their contacts from the colleague who developed coronavirus after returning to China.

EDF Energy spokesman
  • Wednesday 4 March - 11.56am

Both surgeries are closing until at least 16 March. Credit: Google Maps

Two GP surgeries in Devon will be closed until at least 16 March to "help contain the current outbreak of coronavirus".

Chelston Hall Surgery, which closed on Monday, and Barton Surgery are both in Torquay.

A spokesperson said they were following advice from Public Health England and that patients with appointments booked will be provided "alternative support".

  • 1.25pm - Plymouth surgery closes due to 'risk of infection'

Southway Surgery in Plymouth has closed. Credit: ITV News West Country

Patients have been turned away from a GP surgery in Plymouth which has closed suddenly.

Staff at Southway Surgery reportedly stopped patients from entering the premises earlier today (February 3).

The reason for the closure is not yet known, but it comes after two people from Devon tested positive for coronavirus.

For more on this story, click here.

  • 1.20pm - Coronavirus cases up to 51

The number of reported Covid-19 cases in the UK has jumped to 51, the Health Secretary has announced.

  • 11.27am - Devon school with confirmed case of coronavirus to be closed for a third day

The Devon school with a confirmed case of coronavirus in one of its students is to remain closed for a third day.

Churston Ferrers Grammar School was closed on Monday 2 March when a pupil was found to have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus.

Headteacher Keiran Earley sent another letter to parents this morning, saying the school will be closed for a third day tomorrow to allow for further specialist cleaning.

  • 11.20am - South West Wiltshire MP and doctor Andrew Murrison tells ITV "we need to get on top of this" now

  • 10.55am - Weymouth students given all clear

Students and a teacher in Weymouth who had tested for coronavirus have all received the all-clear.

Three students from All Saints Academy and one teacher from Budmouth Academy were tested after returning from trips to northern Italy during the February half term.

The All Saints students had returned from a school ski trip in Italy, but were not in any of the lockdown areas.

  • 9.30am - Pupil from Dorset school being tested

A student from the school is being tested for the disease after showing symptoms. Credit: The Blandford School

A student from a school in Dorset is now being tested for COVID-19, it has been announced.

Head teacher Sally Wilson wrote in a letter to parents and carers that the pupil was showing symptoms after a family member recently returned from a trip to northern Italy.

The school insists the test is precautionary.

  • Tuesday 3 March 6.00am - Devon schools reopen

One of the five primary schools closed was Berry Pomeroy Parochial CE. Credit: Google Maps

All four primary schools that were closed as precautionary measures yesterday will re-open today.

The decision to close Collaton St Mary, Galmpton Primary School, Berry Pomeroy Primary School and Brixham CofE Primary School came as a case of coronavirus was confirmed at Churston Ferrers Grammar in Brixham.

Churston Ferrers will remain closed today.

  • 5.05pm - Gloucester school to be 'deep-cleaned'

Staff at a Gloucester school have written to reassure parents after a pupil who has recently visited Italy started displaying cold symptoms.

Kingsholm CofE Primary School is to have a deep clean after the Year 6 pupil returned from an area of northern Italy and fell ill over the weekend.

A letter issued by the school, signed by Jan Buckland, headteacher, and Matt Ferris, co-headteacher, said: "This morning the child is displaying symptoms of a common cold and as a precaution parents have kept the child at home."

  • 4.10pm - update on suspected EDF case

EDF's Bridgewater House office block in central Bristol. Credit: Bristol Live

EDF, in an updated statement, said it is working with Public Health England to verify claims that one of its employees has tested positive for coronavirus.

It was reported by the Chinese government that a Chinese national, who worked for the firm in central Bristol, was diagnosed after flying to Hong Kong last week.

In a statement sent this afternoon (March 2), an EDF spokesperson said their employee - even if he had contracted the virus - would not have posed a risk to anyone else while in the UK.

Information reported online by the Chinese government said that the individual developed symptoms two days after leaving the UK.

EDF
  • 3.15pm - Additional case confirmed in Devon

Two people from South Devon have tested positive for coronavirus after traveling to Northern Italy.

Public Health England is now contacting people who had close contact with the pair who have contracted COVID-19.

One of those affected is a pupil from Churston Ferrers Grammar School in Brixham, which said it will be closed until Wednesday March 4. The second case is said to be linked.

Public Health England is contacting people who had close contact with two confirmed cases of COVID-19. Both cases are residents from the South Devon area and became infected whilst in Northern Italy.

Public Health England
  • 2.35pm - Tenerife patients flown to Bristol

Bristol Airport.

Travel firm Tui said 17 of its customers at a quarantined hotel in Tenerife have been flown back to the UK after testing negative for coronavirus.

A Tui spokeswoman said its British guests at the H10 Costa Adeje Palace returned on two separate flights to Bristol and Newcastle on Sunday night.

The company's remaining 19 holidaymakers will be flown home on Tuesday, subject to their test results, the spokeswoman said.

  • 2.20pm - case confirmed in Devon

Four more people have been diagnosed with coronavirus in England - including someone from Devon.

The new cases had all travelled to Italy, which is suffering the biggest outbreak in Europe, and bring the UK's total number of cases to 39.

As of 9am this morning, four further patients in England have tested positive for Covid-19.

Professor Chris Whitty, England's chief medical officer

Coronavirus cases increase

The total number of confirmed cases in the UK has now leapt to 39 - after Scotland declared its first on Sunday.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said it was now "inevitable" that the deadlyvirus would "become endemic".

Public Health England (PHE) said the virus may progress to more severe illnesses, such as pneumonia.

Older patients and those with underlying health conditions are more likely to progress to severe disease.

St Mary's C of E Primary School in Tetbury said all people who have had contact with the patient have been identified.

In a letter to parents and carers the school's headteacher said it was not necessary to close the school for health reasons but that a decision had been made to close until at least Wednesday.

St Mary's Primary School has said all people who have had contact with the person have been identified. Credit: ITV West Country

Jo Wooley said a deep clean was carried out on Saturday (29 February).

I can confirm that a member of staff at the school has tested positive for COVID-19 and is currently getting all necessary support and advice from health services.

Jo Wooley, Headteacher, St Mary's Primary School
The advice to people is to regularly wash hands and catch sneezes in tissues to help stop the virus spreading. Credit: ITV News

Public Health England South West confirmed the two cases were linked:

Debra Lapthorne, Centre Director for Public Health England South West, said the organisation "is contacting people who had close contact with the two confirmed cases of COVID-19.

"The two cases are linked and both became infected whilst in Northern Italy. Staff from PHE have continued to support St Mary’s Primary School, Tetbury, where one of the cases works.

“Close contacts for both cases are being given health advice about symptoms and emergency contact details to use if they become unwell in the 14 days after contact with either of the confirmed cases.

"This tried and tested method will ensure we are able to minimise any risk to them and the wider public. If you have not been contacted by Public Health England, you do not need to take any action at this time.”