South Yorkshire now under Very High tier restrictions

Graph for specimens taken up to October 22 with results to October 25. Latest graph point does not yet include all results South Yorkshire has been put under Very High tier restrictions from Saturday (October 24) a day after the Very High tier was introduced in Greater Manchester.

South Yorkshire had been left without any extra restrictions at all until the new three-tier system was introduced just over a week ago. It was then placed on High tier restrictions and now, 10 days later, it has been elevated to the highest level Very High tier 3 restrictions.

Among other restrictions it involves pub closures unless they are serving a substantial meal and a ban on wedding receptions, although weddings and funerals can still be held.

The tier 3 restictions also come with travel advice to avoid entering the Very High alert level area other than for things like work, education or youth services, to meet caring responsibilities or if you are travelling through as part of a longer journey. There is also advice not to travel out of a Very High level alert area if you live there and you must not stay with anyone you do not live with elsewhere in the UK or visit their home.

The village of Fishlake in the least-badly-hit Doncaster metropolitan district of South Yorkshire will be among those with Very High tier Covid-19 restrictions being applied across the county on Saturday All four South Yorkshire districts will have the extra restrictions,  Barnsley,  Rotherham,  Sheffield and also  Doncaster, which has been faring better than the other three districts in terms of the proportion of population affected, although cases have nevertheless been rising.

All four districts have seen increases in the number of cases in the past few weeks, with a particularly massive rise in Sheffield which dipped slightly last week but is back on the rise again this week.

Recent Covid-19 positive test results in South Yorkshire

Local authority districtPopulation W/E Oct 8 Per 100,000W/E Oct 15 Per 100,000*W/E Oct 22 *Per 100,000*
 Barnsley248,707  614 (246.9) 910 (365.9) 1372 (551.7)
 Doncaster313,762  630 (200.8) 914 (291.3) 1555 (495.6)
 Rotherham267,215  713 (266.8) 911 (340.9) 1299 (486.1)
 Sheffield589,710  2906 (492.8) 2374 (402.6) 2676 (453.8)

Data last updated - Sun Oct 25, 2020

W/E = week ending. We aggregate daily figures published at GOV.UK by specimen date into per week statistics. We do this based on weeks from Friday to Thursday, inclusive.
 *  These columns may not yet show complete results. Official figures are based on the date a specimen is taken rather than the date the result is confirmed. The testing and statistics process generally takes a few days and sometimes up to a week. Sadly, the figure shown is likely to rise as new results arrive.


Very high Includes pub closures, outdoor restrictions. HighIncludes social contact restrictions indoors. Medium English national rules (including 'Rule of 6' and 10pm pub curfew).


• Covid-19 positive test totals as published by GOV.UK
• Population based on ONS 2018-calculated projections for 2020

• Table calculated from official data available under  Open Government Licence v3.0




Signs of rises again across South and West Yorkshire

Graph for specimens taken up to October 22 with results to October 25. Latest graph point does not yet include all results Coronavirus cases continue to rise this week across both South and West Yorkshire.

A drop in the number of new cases in both  Leeds in West Yorkshire and  Sheffield in South Yorkshire a week ago from massively high figures the week before is not going to be repeated this week with both large cities showing signs of increased numbers of Covid-19 cases from specimens taken up to Thursday (October 22).

 Bradford and its metropolitan district in West Yorkshire continues to be one of the worst cases in terms of proportion of population that have tested positive for Covid-19 since March, that figure now having passed the 3.0% mark.

Latest data based on Covid-19 total positive test statistics as published by GOV.UK - Sunday October 25, 2020 at 4.11pm.
Page contains official data available under Open Government Licence v3.0


If you need the latest official UK government information on Coronavirus (Covid-19), including links to NHS advice and to what you currently can and cannot do in England today, it can be found at this  GOV.UK - Coronavirus webpage.

Yorkshire places with highest proportion of Covid-19 cases

Districts where more than 2% of population have tested positive since March

Local authority districtPopulationSince March % of pop.
 Oldham238,52581003.4%
 Pendle92,04128563.1%
 Bradford540,909162943.0%
 Sheffield589,710154602.6%
 Leeds795,565193692.4%
 Barnsley248,70756502.3%
 Rotherham267,21560052.2%
 Middlesbrough140,12331492.2%
 Durham County531,947106132.0%
 Kirklees441,77289302.0%

Data last updated - Sun Oct 25, 2020

    Local authority districts including parts of Yorkshire.

Very high Includes pub closures, outdoor restrictions. HighIncludes social contact restrictions indoors. Medium English national rules (including 'Rule of 6' and 10pm pub curfew).


• Covid-19 positive test totals as published by GOV.UK
• Population based on ONS 2018-calculated projections for 2020

• Table calculated from official data available under  Open Government Licence v3.0


Full tables
 Weekly changes     Year totals   

York now a week into High tier restrictions

Just three days after new areas were placed under the Government's revamped extra Covid-19 restrictions,  York was added to the list from Saturday October 17.

Our Yorkshire capital has fared much better than cities like Leeds and Sheffield up to now, even though it is normally the region's biggest tourist attraction.

However there has been a substantial rise in new cases recently and in York the restrictions may be timely measures which were delayed in Leeds and Sheffield only to see the number of new Covid-19 cases there rocket out of control.

There are signs of the number of new cases in York levelling off this week after 620 new cases in the week to October 15, double the figure of two weeks earlier. Leeds had nearly 3,000 new cases in the same week and Sheffield more than 2,300. In the year to date 1.5% of the York population have now tested positive for Covid-19, while in Leeds the figure is 2.4%, in Sheffield 2.6% and in Bradford 3.0%. Hull has done better at 1.2%.

The High band restrictions prevent socialising with anyone who is not in your household or 'support bubble' in any indoor setting while outdoors, the 'Rule of Six' applies.

Recent weekly totals of Covid-19 positive tests in York

Local authority districtPopulation W/E Oct 8 Per 100,000W/E Oct 15 Per 100,000*W/E Oct 22 *Per 100,000*
 York211,099  552 (261.5) 619 (293.2) *616 (291.8)

Data last updated - Sun Oct 25, 2020

W/E = week ending. We aggregate daily figures published at GOV.UK by specimen date into per week statistics. We do this based on weeks from Friday to Thursday, inclusive.
 *  These columns may not yet show complete results. Official figures are based on the date a specimen is taken rather than the date the result is confirmed. The testing and statistics process generally takes a few days and sometimes up to a week. Sadly, the figure shown is likely to rise as new results arrive.


Very high Includes pub closures, outdoor restrictions. HighIncludes social contact restrictions indoors. Medium English national rules (including 'Rule of 6' and 10pm pub curfew).


• Covid-19 positive test totals as published by GOV.UK
• Population based on ONS 2018-calculated projections for 2020

• Table calculated from official data available under  Open Government Licence v3.0


'Very high' tier 3 restrictions for Pendle and Ribble Valley

Salterforth, a Yorkshire location in the Pendle District Another change which was made just three days after the new tiered restrictions were introduced was in the Pennine borderlands of  Pendle and  Ribble Valley which come under Lancashire-wide restrictions.

The districts, which include parts of historic Yorkshire, together with others across Lancashire were moved from the High to Very High tier, meaning that, among other restrictions (see below) pubs and bars will be closed except for serving substantial meals. Alcohol will only be available with such meals.

Waddington in Ribble Valley district The changes came into effect on Saturday October 17.

Compared to the size of their populations, there has been a high rate of Covid-19 in Pendle but not so in and Ribble Valley and in both cases actual numbers are way below city areas. Since March, Pendle has had more than 2,800 positive tests representing 3.1% of the population and in Ribble Valley it has just passed the 1,100 mark, representing 1.9%.

Yorkshire places in  Pendle include Barnoldswick and Earby.  Ribble Valley includes Gisburn, Slaidburn and Waddington.

Covid-19 so far this year in Pendle and Ribble Valley

Local authority districtPopulationSince March % of pop.
 Pendle92,04128563.1%
 Ribble Valley60,95411551.9%

Data last updated - Sun Oct 25, 2020

    Local authority districts including parts of Yorkshire.

Very high Includes pub closures, outdoor restrictions. HighIncludes social contact restrictions indoors. Medium English national rules (including 'Rule of 6' and 10pm pub curfew).


• Covid-19 positive test totals as published by GOV.UK
• Population based on ONS 2018-calculated projections for 2020

• Table calculated from official data available under  Open Government Licence v3.0


Key points of the Government's tiers regime

The Government has set in place an attempt to standardise its special measures to control the spread of Covid-19 by repackaging them as a tiers system from Wednesday (October 14).

There had previously been variations in measures applied at various times in many local authority districts as well as the differences between the countries of the UK. It had led to many calls for the Government to cut the confusion.

There are now three tiers of restrictions:

Tier 1 - Medium This is largely based around the current English national regime, including:
• The 'Rule of Six' where you must not socialise in any more than groups of six, indoors or outdoors (with some exemptions).
• Pubs, restaurants and entertainment venues must be closed between 10pm and 5am and food and drink must only be consumed at tables. Some off-premises food services can continue after 10pm.
• Weddings and funerals can take place with restricted numbers.
• Face coverings must be worn where required.

Tier 2 - High This varies social contact restrictions previously operating in several districts in Yorkshire. In addition to the Medium tier restrictions above:
• You must not socialise with anyone who is not in your household or 'support bubble' in any indoor setting.
• Outdoors, the 'Rule of Six' applies.

Tier 3 -Very high In addition to the High tier restrictions above there can be a new variety of further restrictions across districts, but these are expected, at minimum, to include:
• You must not socialise with anyone who is not in your household or 'support bubble' in any indoor setting, in private gardens or at most outdoor hospitality venues or ticketed events.
• The 'Rule of Six' will apply at other outdoor locations.
• Pubs and bars must close, but can stay open for restaurant operations and can only serve alcohol with a meal.
• Weddings and funerals can take place but wedding receptions are not allowed.
• Exercise classes and sports can take place outdoors, but not indoors except in certain circumstances.
• Advice is to try to avoid leaving or entering a very-high level alert area.

Yorkshire places under restrictions

Part of the Peak District National Park in the Yorkshire half of the Oldham metropolitan district of Greater Manchester which has Very High tier restrictions from October 23 High tier districts:  Calderdale,  Bradford,  Kirklees,  Leeds and  Wakefield metropolitan districts in West Yorkshire;  Middlesbrough,  Redcar & Cleveland,  Stockton-on-Tees among all districts in the Tees Valley Combined Authority area; City of  York unitary authority area; also  Durham County, including those parts of the unitary authority which are part of historic Yorkshire.

Very High tier districts:  Ribble Valley,  Pendle,  Oldham and
 Barnsley,  Doncaster,  Rotherham and  Sheffield metropolitan districts in South Yorkshire.

The above is a summary of some of the main features. Fuller details can be found at this  GOV.UK Covid alert levels page.


If you need the latest official UK government information on Coronavirus (Covid-19), including links to NHS advice and to what you currently can and cannot do in England today, it can be found at this  GOV.UK - Coronavirus webpage.


Nightingale hospital back on standby

Harrogate Convention Centre The 500-bed Nightingale Hospital created at Harrogate Convention Centre is back on standby as hospital cases of Covid-19 rise to higher levels than in March. Its opening in April followed nearly three weeks of conversion work. It will provide for Coronavirus (Covid-19) patients for all the Yorkshire and the Humber government region. Its location in Harrogate, North Yorkshire, should, in light traffic conditions, put it within an hour-and-a-half drive of all of Yorkshire's major towns and cities should local hospitals become overstretched.

Do figures conceal potential for spread in densely-populated cities?

"Cases per 100,000 population" is a figure widely used by Government in making assessments about Covid-19 special measures. However, it appears to dilute infection statistics for densely-populated cities with the possibility of masking greater total numbers of people infected and a potential greater risk of spread than in areas where the population is more spread out (see graphic).

It is arguable whether a per-100,000-population figure is a better measure than, say, a per-square-mile figure or just counting the actual numbers of people affected as we do on the graphs on this page.



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