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Concern as Stockport sees a coronavirus spike while Trafford also sees a rise

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Mike Pennington / Geograph

Coronavirus cases in Stockport have remained relatively low throughout the pandemic, but concerns have been raised as they’re now growing, particularly in young people. 

COVID-19 has spiked in Stockport over the weekend with a number of young adults testing positive.

Through late June and early July, the borough recorded five or fewer cases a day on average. Since last Thursday however, this number has shot up to between five and 15. 

The council’s Chief Executive, Pam Smith has reportedly attributed this to an outbreak in a care home and a significant rise among young adults (18-25). 

Gerald England/Geograph

According to Andy Burnham’s weekly updates, Stockport’s infection rate has been consistently one of the lowest in Greater Manchester. 

Stockport Council says the infection rate continues to be ‘well below’ many other areas but there has been a ‘noticeable rise’ in the number of cases in the age category 18-25. 

Jennifer Connolly, Stockport Council’s director of public health, said: “We would like to remind all residents, no matter what age they are, of the importance of not meeting up with anyone if there are any confirmed cases within the household.

“If this is the case households should isolate for 14 days if a household member has been tested positive or has symptoms and is awaiting test results. We encourage everyone in Stockport to comply with NHS test and trace advice, including isolating for 14 days if you are advised to do so following contact with someone who has been confirmed as having Covid-19.”

Stockport council leader, Elise Wilson added: “It’s absolutely right we put targeted stuff out. We know, because we have a robust plan and robust systems in place it means we can react to it and keep people informed. It is a good thing, we have this in place and it’s working.”

Mike Pennington / Geograph

Similarly, there has been a spike in coronavirus cases in Trafford which is also proportionately higher in younger people.

The number of people who have tested positive for COVID-19 has risen in the borough, with half of the new cases being accounted for by 17-23 year olds. 

In the week ending July 17th, the number of new coronavirus cases in Trafford was 26, which rose to 77 in the following week. 39 of these were aged between 15 and 25. 

Public Health bosses have confirmed that the number of young people who are getting tested has increased and could therefore be partly responsible for the increase. 

 Keith Williamson/Geograph

Eleanor Roaf, director of Public Health at Trafford Council, said: “We have seen a rise in young people coming forward to be tested and this has led to an increase in positive cases.

“We don’t know exactly why this is but we are thanking younger people for acting responsibly in coming forward for tests when they feel ill.

“We think that the young people have been contacting each other and raising awareness of the importance of testing.

“If this is the case, we would like to thank them for their efforts, as this will help us stop further spread of the disease.

“I would urge everyone to continue to stick to the rules around social distancing and hand-washing when they are meeting up with friends or going out to pubs and restaurants.”

Charles Bowring/Wikimedia

Councillor Jane Slater, Trafford Council’s Executive Member for Health, Wellbeing and Equalities said: “While any increase in cases are a cause for concern I am reassured that people are coming forward to be tested and I would urge anyone showing symptoms to make sure they are tested and if they test positive to self-isolate.

“No-one should be complacent as the virus has not gone away and still poses a risk especially to the vulnerable in our society.”

Medical Director at NHS Trafford Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), Dr Mark Jarvis, added: “My colleagues and I have witnessed first-hand the effects of this virus and it is absolutely true to say that this pandemic is not over.

“Together, we have done an excellent job in keeping cases very low in Trafford but we cannot allow complacency to creep in and undo what we’ve achieved.

“Please, if you feel unwell and are showing symptoms such as a change of taste and smell, have a new persistent cough or have a fever, book a test as soon as possible.

“You are not just looking after yourself, you are looking after the people around you, whether it’s your friends, family or local community.”

The news comes after Oldham introduced strict new restrictions due to a ‘dramatic’ spike in cases. 

Stockport council has continued to promote the ‘key steps’ people should take to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, including:

  • Keep 2m physical distancing 
  • Self isolate and get tested if you get symptoms of COVID-19
  • Wear a face mask in enclosed spaces
  • Keep good hand hygiene
  • Isolate if you come into contact with someone who has COVID-19 

A new mobile testing facility has been set up in University Academy 92 in Old Trafford as a response to the trends found in that borough. 

A new social media campaign targeting younger adult has launched this week to help share important public health messages. 

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Tributes pour in for ‘gorgeous’ mum killed in Liverpool dog attack

Police say five American bulldogs have since been ‘humanely destroyed’

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Ann Dunn / Facebook & Granada Reports

Tributes have been pouring in for the ‘gorgeous’ mum who was mauled to death by five dogs in Liverpool.

Ann Dunn, sixty-five, died after being attacked by five American bulldogs in a property on St. Brigids Crescent, Vauxhall.

Merseyside Police were called out by paramedics on Monday October 3rd at around 4:25pm. However, Ann’s injuries were too serious and she was pronounced as dead at the scene.

Police say five American bulldogs, which were found inside the property, were handed over and have now been humanely destroyed.

Ann Dunn / Facebook

Officers also confirmed that a thirty-one-year-old man had been arrested on suspicion of owning a dog dangerously out of control. He remains in custody.

Following the news of her death, people who knew Ann have paid their own tributes to the mum and grandmother on social media.

One person wrote on Facebook: “RIP gorgeous lady, still can’t believe it Ann. Had some good times with you I will never forget.”

She added: “I am all so heartbroken for you kids and family right now. Don’t want to even think how they feeling… So happy I got [sic] have old chat with you on Friday even though it was only for 10 minutes, keeping looking over your family.”

Another social media user added: “Heart breaking thinking of all the family, devastated for yous all. R.I.P lovely Ann.”

Ann Dunn / Facebook

Liverpool John Moores University, where Ann worked as a cleaner, also paid tribute to their ‘hard-working and dedicated’ employee.

They said: “The university community is absolutely shocked and devastated by this tragic loss and to lose Ann in this way is just heart-breaking. Ann was hard-working and dedicated and had so many friends across the organisation. It’s just awful and she will be terribly missed.

“Our thoughts at this time are with her family and loved-ones.”

Detective Inspector Katie Coote added: “This is clearly a very distressing incident and our thoughts are with the family and friends of the lady who died.

“Our enquiries remain ongoing as we seek to establish what has happened and I would urge anyone who could assist our enquiries to get in touch.”

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Man arrested after woman killed by ‘five dogs’ in Liverpool

The dogs have since been ‘humanely destroyed’

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Granada Reports & BBC Breakfast

A man has been arrested after a woman was killed after she was attacked by five dogs in a house in Liverpool.

Merseyside Police were called out by paramedics yesterday (Monday October 3rd) after reports a sixty-three-year-old woman had been attacked by the animals inside a property down St. Brigid’s Crescent in Kirkdale.

The woman, who is yet to be formally identified, died at the scene following the attack at around 4.25pm. 

Police say five American bulldogs, which were found inside the property, were handed over and have now been humanely destroyed.

A thirty-one-year-old man has since been arrested on suspicion of owning a dog deemed to be dangerously out of control. He remains in custody.

An investigation into the incident remains ongoing and a post-mortem will be carried out to establish the exact cause of death.

Detective Inspector Katie Coote said: “This is clearly a very distressing incident and our thoughts are with the family and friends of the lady who died.

“Our enquiries remain ongoing as we seek to establish what has happened and I would urge anyone who could assist our enquiries to get in touch.”

Anyone with information is asked to DM @MerPolCC or @CrimestoppersUK on Twitter. Alternatively, they can be contacted via telephone on 0800 555 111 quoting reference 22000731247.

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New details about Greater Manchester’s Bee Network transport system revealed

The first fifty Bee Network buses are due to be rolled out in part of the region next year

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Transport for Greater Manchester

As the launch date for Greater Manchester’s highly-anticipated Bee Network draws ever closer, more details about the new transport system have been unveiled.

Mayor Andy Burnham unveiled the first look at the Bee Network’s fleet of electric buses last month, with the first fifty due to be rolled out across Wigan and Bolton on September 17th, 2023. 

The rest of the network will then be implemented across the region by January 2025, alongside Bee Network cycle hire bikes and, ultimately, the Metrolink network.

The buses will be powered by electric batteries to ensure they produce zero local emissions, supporting Greater Manchester in building a sustainable future for public transport.

This comes as Transport for Greater Manchester confirmed a receipt of thirty-three bids from nine different operators vying to run the locally controlled bus services – the first in thirty-six years.

Andy Burnham said of the new network: “The countdown to bringing buses back under local control for the first time in thirty-six years is well and truly on.

“With the order placed for our first fifty new electric buses and strong interest from operators who want to run the first franchised services a year from now, the Bee Network is gathering real momentum.

“We’ve already seen a positive response to our call for people to get back on board, helped by the successful introduction of cheaper bus fares across Greater Manchester to help residents cope with the cost-of-living crisis and I’m pleased to announce that we have commenced engagement with operators about the potential to cap weekly bus tickets from early next year.”

“The previous government bought into what we are trying to do, and I underlined the importance of this partnership approach continuing during my meeting with the new Transport Secretary yesterday.

“By working together, we will realise our ambitions and deliver a network that will transform how people get around our city region – not just in the years ahead but for future generations.”

Bus franchising will be rolled out in phases, starting in Bolton and Wigan as well as parts of Salford and West Manchester on September 17th 2023, followed by Bury, Rochdale, Oldham and parts of North Manchester from the end of March 2024.

Stockport, Trafford, Tameside and South Manchester, as well as the remaining parts of Salford, will be rolled out from January 5th, 2025.

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