CORONAVIRUS infection rates in Cheshire West and Cheshire East have increased over the past seven days.

The figures, for the seven days to October 22, are based on tests carried out in laboratories (pillar one of the Government's testing programme) and in the wider community (pillar two).

The rate is expressed as the number of new cases per 100,000 people.

Data for the most recent four days (October 23-26) has been excluded as it is incomplete and does not reflect the true number of cases.

The latest figures show that Cheshire West and Chester’s infection rate now stands at 221.2 per 100,000 people, with 759 new infections over that seven-day period.

The infection rate for the previous seven days, up to October 15, was 186.8 per 100,000 people.

In Cheshire East, the infection rate now stands at 197.3 per 100,000 people in the local authority, with 758 new cases over that seven-day period.

That is up from 172.1 per 100,000 people over the previous seven days.

The latest infection rates continue to show that the north west is the region where the virus is currently most prevalent, with nine out of the highest 10 infection rates in the country being in the north west.

In Blackburn with Darwen in Lancashire, 1,131 new cases were recorded in the seven days to October 22, the equivalent of 755.5 cases per 100,000 people – the highest rate in England.

This is up from 515.0 cases per 100,000 in the seven days to October 15, the largest weekly increase in the country.

Rossendale, also in Lancashire, has the second highest rate, up from 472.8 to 653.3, with 467 new cases.

Oldham in Greater Manchester is in third place, with its rate rising from 415.0 to 625.4, with 1,483 new cases.