REPORTS that York could see a spike in coronavirus cases and a possible local lockdown appear to have been sparked by a single positive Covid-19 test result.

York has been named in national newspapers as one of 36 towns or cities that have seen a rise in coronavirus cases.

But a report in The Daily Telegraph says this is because York recorded one positive Covid-19 test result in the week up to June 26 – after having zero cases reported the week before – according to Public Health England figures.

Public health data shows that between June 5 and June 24 there was just one positive Covid-19 test result, on June 23.

But the figures from Public Health England only refer to lab-confirmed cases (Pillar 1 test results) so may not provide the full picture. Pillar 2 test results collected by commercial partners – such as those recorded at the testing centre at Poppleton Bar Park&Ride – are not yet published.

City of York Council’s director of public health Sharon Stoltz reassured residents – saying the city has relatively low numbers of cases and “a local lockdown is certainly not necessary”.

She said: “It is unclear where these figures in the national media reported for York came from. I can reassure residents and businesses in York that the city currently has relatively low numbers of cases of COVID-19 and a local lockdown is certainly not necessary.”

Current figures – including tests results from both Public Health England and from commercial partners which the council now has access to – show that York’s infection rate is 421.6 per 100,000 people

Ms Stoltz added: “To put this into context, the rate across England is 425.8 and closer to home, Yorkshire and Humber’s infection rate is 519.6.

“Furthermore, as we produce seven day rolling averages there is no evidence to suggest that cases are increasing in York.

“I will be making a public presentation to the next Outbreak Control Advisory Board on how we use data and to reassure residents and businesses that we are doing everything we can locally to control the virus.

“This data reflects the commitment of our residents to staying alert, controlling the virus and following guidelines to wash hands regularly, wear face coverings where social distancing is difficult and staying home if they present symptoms.

“Our collective effort is not over, and we must continue to be vigilant as our city further reopens, to ensure that we can do this as safely as possible.”

The average age of the people who have died from Covid-19 in York is 82.4 years, with an age range of between 53 and 104 – slightly older than the national average.