WINCHESTER will likely be classed as a coronavirus ‘hotspot’ when the second national lockdown ends, according to a model by university scientists.

A map by Imperial College London says it is 96 per cent likely that Winchester will have at least 100 cases per 100,000 people by December 6, four days after lockdown is due to end.

The university’s Medical Research Council Centre for Global Infectious Disease Analysis classes areas with such a rate as a Covid-19 ‘hotspot’.

The Imperial College model is based on reported cases and weekly reported deaths, combined with mathematical modelling, which results in the probability of an area becoming a hotspot in the following weeks.

Winchester has a current rolling rate of 184.2 cases per 100,000 people, according to the latest Government data.

The Government coronavirus dashboard shows Hampshire as a whole has already hit the ‘hotspot’ figure, with a rolling rate of 147.2 per 100,000 in the week up to November 17.

The Imperial modelling suggests the national lockdown is unlikely to have brought the rolling rate down below the 100 rate by early December.

The Government will be looking at the rolling rate, number of cases and the number of people in hospital with the virus, as it decides what restrictions will be in place over the Christmas period.

The high rolling rate may impact what restrictions residents will face when lockdown lifts.

New Alresford has the highest rolling rate in the area with 460.9 cases per 100,000 according to the latest data.

The Colden Common & Twyford area has the lowest rolling rate with an average of 52.5 cases per 100,000.