ON the day when Boris Johnson warned of an expected third wave of coronavirus to hit the UK soon, the number of new cases remained below 100 across Cheshire East and West.

Speaking on a visit to Preston, the Prime Minister acknowledged a third wave was already under way on the continent and that he expected us to 'feel those effects in due course'.

In the latest figures released by Public Health England, the number of new positive cases confirmed in the last 24-hour period across both boroughs was 87, with 45 in Cheshire West and 32 in Cheshire East.

During the course of the pandemic there have now been 20,448 cases in Cheshire East and 21,348 in Cheshire West.

While there is certainly no sign of a third wave yet in the figures, the infection rates for both have seen a slight rise but remain comparable to what we have seen throughout March so far and remain much lower than the January 4 peak.

In Cheshire West there have been 229 new cases in the last seven day period up to March 17, which means the rate of infection is currently 66.8 per 100,000 people.

This is a jump from what it was the day before (56.3) but is very similar to what it was a week ago (63.5) and less than what it was two weeks ago when it was 70.5 per 100,000 people.

In Cheshire East there have been 225 new case in the last seven day period up to March 17, with the rate of infection being 58.6 per 100,000.

This is a slight increase from the day before (57.3) and although it is also higher than what it was a week ago (52.3) it is much lower than what it was two weeks ago when it was 69 per 100,000.

Meanwhile, the vaccination programme continues to make strides with 367,000 receiving their first dose yesterday, taking the overall total to just shy of 28 million.

More than two million people have now received both doses of their vaccine.