NORTHWICH residents are being urged not to be complacent about the coronavirus as another bank holiday weekend begins.

Lockdown restrictions were eased earlier this month, but new cases of Covid-19 continue to be confirmed.

As of 9am on Friday, there were 1,061 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Cheshire West, 87 more than at the same point one week earlier.

Meanwhile, the most recent figures from the Office of National Statistics show that 268 deaths from the virus were recorded in the borough as of May 16 – with 66 per cent in hospitals, 28 per cent in care homes and the remainder elsewhere.

Cllr Louise Gittins, leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: "I know it’s been extremely difficult for everyone and for those who have lost loved ones during the pandemic. My thoughts are with those families.

"During these times of uncertainty, fear and worry, the community spirit has shone through. Residents have come together in times of need, supporting each other to help beat this virus.

"Whilst the number of deaths in the borough seems to be stabilising, we shouldn’t become complacent.

"We need to continue to follow the Government guidelines, stay at home as much as possible, maintain social distancing and help to save lives."

CWAC has been working with care home providers to monitor the situation and provide personal protective equipment – with 76 deaths in the borough recorded at care homes as of May 16, the latest figure available.

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The council is set to receive £4 million from Government's infection control fund, which will go towards the cost of implementing measures to reduce Covid-19 transmission.

Cllr Margaret Parker, leader of CWAC's Conservative opposition, said: "Care staff are the heroes of this pandemic – working tirelessly to support those in our community who need it the most.

"I do not underestimate how challenging a time this is for people living and working in care. This new funding will make a real different to local care homes here.

"By putting in place stronger prevention, we can ensure that we continue to drive coronavirus out of our care homes, making them safer and better able to look after people who need it the most."