ONLY 44 new cases of Covid-19 were reported today in the Winchester district, the first day in a week with cases under 50.

Yesterday the Chronicle reported nearly a fifth of all the Covid cases in the Winchester district have been reported in the last six days, figures show.

The surge in Covid-19 in the Winchester district caused by the virulent new strain shows no sign of abating.

Nationally 50,000 new cases have been reported for the last four days.

Today's figure of new cases was 44. In the previous six days since Boxing Day they have been 104, 57, 56, 84, 90 and 119.

The district's infection rate is 2,221 per 100,000 people. The national infection rate is 3,892 per 100,000.

The ‘district’ covers more than just the 'city' and covers a swathe of central Hampshire from Micheldever to Denmead, and Crawley to Ropley.

In the week between December 25- January 1 there have been 554 new cases reported in Winchester area, compared to 228 in the week to December 24. Winchester joins Southampton and Eastleigh where the rate has more then doubled over the same period.

Sixteen deaths have been reported in the county council area in the last 24 hours with none in the NHS area that includes the Royal Hampshire County Hospital in Winchester. The county council number of deaths is now 1,092.

Recent cooling in the hotspot in the southern parishes at Denmead and Southwick appears to have stopped. In the two villages in the seven days to December 27, 84 cases were reported, a daily fall on the week before of 16, or 16 per cent. The rolling rate per 100,000 people of 819 is still amongst the highest in the country. On the official map it is now marked black, the highest rate.

Hampshire Chronicle:

In the adjacent area of Swanmore, Hambledon and West Meon there have been 29 cases, up 8, or 38.1 per cent, for a rolling number of 331, up from yesterday's 321.

The only area in the Winchester district where the numbers were dropping so fast that the area is marked green on the map was Stanmore. No longer. It reported 8 cases, up 2There have been only six news cases in the seven days to December 26, no change, for a rolling number of 118, still relatively low.

Hampshire Chronicle:

Across Winchester district in the seven days to December 27 there have been 392 cases, up 139, or 54.9 per cent, for a rolling number of 314.0.

Across Hampshire there have been 4,677 cases in the seven days to December 27, an increase of 1,500 week on week, or 47.4 per cent for a rolling number of 337.6 per 100,000.

The hottest hotspot in Hampshire is Rushmoor in the north-east of the county which includes Aldershot. It has seen the second highest week-on-week jump in the UK.

The most recent figures from the NHS show there are currently 44 Covid patients at the RHCH compared to 31 last week and 78 at Basingstoke hospital compared to 44 previously. There are now three at Andover War Memorial Hospital for the first time in months. As reported yesterday the local healthcare trust has started postpoining planned operations to free up capacity for the care of Covid patients.

In the NHS today across Hampshire 14 people are reported to have died. Across the county’s NHS some 936 people have died since March.

In Winchester City Council area the figure for deaths is 106, up one. In Portsmouth it is 146, up four, and 151 in Southampton, up three.

The Office for National Statistics reports that 1,092 have died in the Hampshire County Council area, with an increase of 16 reported today.

So far, at Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust there have been 243 deaths, no change; 248 people have died at University Hospital Southampton, up four, whilst at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust the toll is now 416, up ten. Forty three deaths have been reported in Portsmouth this week alone.

Other Covid news:

Winchester secondary school delays start of new term for most pupils

Read more here