A SIGNIFICANT rise of coronavirus cases in the Corbridge area has been described as a "contained outbreak."

As of Wednesday, the Corbridge ward had seen 22 cases in seven days - the third highest figure in Northumberland for that time.

However, officials have moved to reassure residents and explained that the outbreak has been traced to a residential setting in the area.

Hexham Courant:

Coun. Nick Oliver, who represents the ward on the county council, said: "My concerns about the rise in cases in Corbridge have been allayed by the Public Health team’s assurance that this is a contained outbreak which doesn’t represent a risk to the wider community.

"The team are in close contact with the setting and I’m grateful for their rapid response.”

Public Health Consultant, Dr Jim Brown, said there was minimal risk to the wider public - but encouraged residents to continue to stick to the restrictions.

He said: "We are aware of a recent rise in cases in the Corbridge area which has been traced largely to a residential setting in the area, although we'd stress this is not a care home.

"We've been in close contact with the setting and ensured appropriate measures are in place around self-isolation, testing, contact tracing and other infection prevention and control measures.

"We believe at this time there is minimal risk to the wider public and the outbreak seems to be self contained.

"This is a reminder that outbreaks of COVID can occur in all parts of Northumberland and it is not only people living in the more populated areas that are at risk.

We'd emphasise once again the need for everyone to practice good hand hygiene, wear face coverings, maintain social distancing and abide by the current rules. It's also vital that anyone who does have symptoms gets tested as soon as possible."