13 November 2020

​Northamptonshire sees a more than 50% rise in COVID-19 cases since last week.

This week’s figures paint a stark picture of what is going on in Northamptonshire with 1,623 residents testing positive for COVID-19 in the last week. This is a more than 50% increase in cases compared to the previous week.

Lucy Wightman, Director of Public Health for Northamptonshire County Council says: “There is no denying Northamptonshire figures are on an upward trajectory and the increase once again in the number of over 60s who are testing positive is of huge concern.

“When numbers of coronavirus cases in the over 60s age groups rise, sadly so too do hospital admissions for COVID-19, and even more sadly the number of deaths.

“You must stay at home wherever possible, you must get tested if you have symptoms and you must self-isolate if you have tested positive or have been instructed to self-isolate because you have come into contact with someone who has tested positive.

“And you must wear masks. Northamptonshire Police have been issuing fines and will continue to do so for those who don’t comply.

“Cases will continue to accelerate rapidly unless we urgently adhere to national and local guidance. We must act now.”

While the second lockdown has been a difficult time for residents who cannot see their families and friends, it has also been difficult for businesses across Northamptonshire, particularly those who have been forced to close.

The Local Restrictions Support Grant, which helped businesses ordered to close in local tier three lockdowns, is now available for businesses required to close in national measures.

At the start of the second English lockdown local businesses who have been ordered to close for four weeks may be eligible for a government grant of up to £3,000. The value of these grants has been set by central Government with businesses that pay business rates on their premises eligible.

Eligible businesses will get one grant for each property liable for business rates and grants are based on the rateable value of the property on the first full day of lockdown restrictions (Thursday 5 November 2020).

As with the business grants made during the first lockdown, these will be administered by the District or Borough council in which the business is located, and each council will imminently be publicising its application process.

Councils are also looking urgently at how other businesses not paying business rates can be supported.

Councillor Jonathan Nunn, Leader of Northampton Borough Council says: “We recognise and applaud the positive response of our businesses so many of whom have worked hard during the pandemic to adapt their businesses, establishments who were restaurants offering takeaway as an option, and other shops providing a click and collect service for customers. But we know for many this is simply not possible.

“We know a second lockdown is going to hit local businesses hard and we hope that these one-off payments will go some way to help those in need.

“It’s an extremely stressful and difficult time for businesses which is why we want to deliver this financial support as quickly as possible. We’d ask businesses to keep an eye out on their borough or districts website for information on if you qualify and how to apply.”