Further evidence that England's second wave of Covid-19 slowed before lockdown

Downing Street today turned down calls to cut England's second lockdown, insisting that it run until December 2nd, despite a overwhelming catalog of evidence that the local three-tier system was working before ministers hit the panic button another crippling shutdown.

Figures released today by the Bureau of National Statistics suggest that the country's outbreak has shrunk over the past week, and the number of people contracting the virus on a daily basis is 12 percent lower than the week before.

More than half of local authorities saw their positive test rates decline in late October. The Covid Symptom Study predicts the UK has already passed the peak of the second wave, and SAGE announced today that the UK R-rate has stayed between those levels 1.1 and 1.3 for two weeks, falling in five of seven regions this week in England.

However, when Boris Johnson's spokesman urged the need for a full month-long shutdown, he said today, “The lockdown will last four weeks until December 2nd. As we said earlier, the trend in hospital admissions is increasing …

"We put in a second lockdown to reduce the transmission of the virus."

Today's ONS report found that an average of 45,700 people in England caught Covid-19 between October 25 and October 31, after a record high of 51,900 the week before.

Random mass tests by the ONS suggest that 618,700 people in England were infected with Covid-19 at some point last week, which is about 1.13 percent of the population, or one in 90 people. That was an increase from 568,100 the week before, and the one-week delay between new infections and total infections meant an increase, although the daily estimate was now lower.

ONS experts admitted "the incidence appears to have stabilized at around 50,000 new infections per day," and Oxford University biologist Professor James Naismith said, "This is evidence that the pre-lockdown social constraints were real Had an impact. "

The numbers add to growing evidence from every corner that the second wave of coronavirus has already peaked with England under the strictest lockdown rules since spring for a month.

The Covid Symptom Study, conducted by health tech company ZOE and experts at King & # 39; s College London, has also estimated a decline in cases, and project leader Professor Tim Spector believes it is the peak of the second wave is over and says: "In the past week cases are going in the right direction".

MailOnlines analysis of Public Health England's weekly coronavirus surveillance report released last night shows a sea of ​​green has swept across the country as more than half of local authorities saw a drop in Covid-19 in the last week of October Recorded infection rates per person.

The brightening picture suggests that No10's three-tier lockdown system, which has been lauded internationally as "very effective" in the north, successfully put down the disease before the lockdown was called. And rates fell even in areas where there were no level 2 or 3 lockdowns, suggesting that even national regulations helped.

Economists and politicians have criticized the decision to introduce nationwide rules as hasty and unnecessary. They pointed out that infection rates have already fallen in many areas, that the people of Cornwall are being punished for what is happening in the north, adding, "Nobody explained why we gave up the animal approach & # 39 ;.

The graphics SAGE used to justify the November lockdown were torn apart by experts and ministers who showed that a model predicting 4,000 deaths a day in particular was weeks out of date and unnecessarily terrifying the public. MPs have told MailOnline that the use of data reflects the "shady dossier" that led the country to war against Iraq in 2003, calling it "propaganda" in favor of the lockdown.

The coronavirus R-rate fell in five regions of England this week - with the exception of London and the South East, where it didn't change - and remained stable between 1.1 and 1.3 in the UK and the UK overall. Last week was down from 1.2 to 1.4 the week before

The coronavirus R-rate fell in five regions of England this week – with the exception of London and the South East, where it didn't change – and remained stable between 1.1 and 1.3 in the UK and the UK overall. Last week was down from 1.2 to 1.4 the week before

Experts said today the ONS figures, believed to be the most accurate at estimating the true size of the UK outbreak, are "welcome" and promising.

Professor James Naismith, who heads the Rosalind Franklin Scientific Institute at Oxford University, said: & # 39; Today's release of ONS data for the week of October 31st brings welcome news.

& # 39; Although the virus is still growing, it appears to have stabilized … The important thing is that these data provide a picture that is consistent with the data (Covid Symptom Study) that the virus is more likely to be constant than spreading at an increasing rate. This is evidence that the social restrictions before the lockdown had a real impact. & # 39;

The rate is falling in five out of seven regions of England

SAGE's official estimate of the coronavirus reproduction rate was released today and has declined in five of England's seven regions.

The UK and England aggregate rates were flat at 1.1-1.3, after falling from 1.2-1.4 two weeks ago.

This week rates fell in the east of England, the Midlands, the North East, the North West and the South West, while rates in London and the South East remained unchanged. They were not resurrected in any part of the country.

The highest rates are 1.2-1.4 in the southwest and southeast, while the lowest in the northwest are 1.0-1.1.

SAGE said: & # 39; SAGE is confident that the epidemic in England has continued to worsen in recent weeks.

“While there is some evidence that the rate of growth is slowing in some parts of the country, disease levels in these areas are very high and significant health care demand and mortality will persist until R is lowered to 1 and well below it for a longer period. & # 39;



United Kingdom

East england



NE & Yorkshire


South east


R rate this week

1.1 – 1.3 (=)

1.1 – 1.3 (=)

1.1 – 1.4 (down)

1.1 – 1.3 (=)

1.1 – 1.3 (down)

1.1 – 1.2 (down)

1.0 -1.1 (down)

1.2 – 1.4 (=)

1.2 – 1.4 (down)

R rate last week

1.1 – 1.3

1.1 – 1.3

1.2 – 1.4

1.1 – 1.3

1.2 – 1.4

1.1 – 1.3

1.0 – 1.2

1.2 – 1.4


He said that when this was the height of the second wave, he would not expect deaths to rise above 1,000 a day "for an extended period", but rather that it was "very likely" to be above 500 a day would for a while.

Professor Naismith added, "Should next week's data show a similar stabilization or reduction, we can be sure that the second wave has stabilized for now."

Scientists warned that while the infection numbers seemed to be heading in the right direction, one week of data was not enough to be sure of a trend. And the number of cases is still very high and will put pressure on hospitals.

Dr. Paul Hunter of the University of East Anglia added, “Whether this will turn out to be a temporary decline or a longer-term trend, possibly due to the introduction of the three-tier system, is too early.

"Nonetheless, these observations are very welcome and hopefully after the current lockdown ends, we will see continued decline later this year and through 2021."

The ONS estimates are based on tests done over a two week period and then compared to those done over an additional month earlier.

For this reason, positive test rates are still described as increasing, as the last two week period increased from the previous two weeks, although there was a decrease in the last seven days.

"The infection rate has increased in the past few weeks, but the rate of increase is less high compared to the previous weeks," says today's report.

It added, “Positivity rates have increased in all age groups, except for older teenagers and young adults, where rates are now apparently flattening out. However, the highest rates are still in this group.

& # 39; In the past two weeks, positivity rates have increased in all regions except one (the North East) in England. The highest rates of Covid-19 infection are still in the Northwest, Yorkshire and The Humber.

& # 39; In the last week (October 25-31, 2020) there were an estimated 8.38 new Covid-19 infections per 10,000 people per day in the community population in England, which equates to around 45,700 new cases per day. The incidence seems to have stabilized at around 50,000 new infections per day. & # 39;

The numbers are based on 209,554 tests taken in the past 14 days, of which 2,173 were positive. The positive came from 1,900 people in 1,494 homes.

Top scholars have insisted that England's outbreak "could look much worse," praising the tiered system that forbade socializing under the harshest of measures. But they admitted that stricter curbs were likely needed in the south, arguing that health chiefs are too slow to drag areas into higher brackets.

Infection rates also fell in more than three-quarters of London's 32 boroughs – including two of the hardest-hit boroughs in Ealing and Hammersmith and Fulham – the data said.

At the other end of the scale, however, a handful of authorities saw increases of over 40 percent, including in a corner of Kent, part of East Yorkshire, Swindon in the southwest, and Dudley in the West Midlands.

It comes after Boris Johnson last night revealed a table showing how NHS England hospitals could be overwhelmed with Covid-19 in weeks. At a press conference on Downing Street officially admitting the nation into the second national lockdown misery, Prime Minister and NHS England chief Sir Simon Stevens referred to the graphic as evidence to justify months of intervention.

Top pundits feared, however, that No10 just hit the lockdown panic button because he was cornered by his "dark" scientific advisers who refuse to deal with the same test that was thrown at them during the first wave.

And today there was an official prediction that coronavirus deaths would soon surpass those recorded in the first wave, which the government tacitly corrected for being too high. The projections were used to drive the British nation into a second lock.

Conservative MPs condemned the data as an Iraqi-style "shady dossier on the Covid graph", marking its resemblance to Tony Blair's controversial document leading the country into war in the Middle East. Furious economists said those responsible for the "flawed modeling should be held accountable for the economic disaster that follows."

82 of England's 149 municipalities saw their infection rates decline in the week leading up to November 1, the latest snapshot from Public Health England suggests.


The government and its scientific advisors were accused today of using "seedy coronavirus data" to justify a devastating second lockdown.

Tory MPs warned SAGE's Doomsday predictions, which Boris Johnson released Saturday night to announce the draconian measures, and echoed on the controversial dossier Britain sent to war on Iraq.

A graphic was released yesterday evening claiming England could have up to 1,500 deaths a day through December. The data was secretly weakened "after an error was found".

The prediction sparked widespread concern as, if true, it would dwarf the 1,000 daily deaths recorded during the peak of the first wave in April.

SAGE's forecast for hospital admissions has also been tacitly revised to 6,190 from 9,000 by early December.

Tory MPs Marcus Fysh and Peter Bone warned that public confidence would be undermined because "such poor quality" data was used to initiate such harmful action.

They compared it to the "seedy dossier" on Iraqi weapons of mass destruction that led the country to war in the Middle East. All of the claims made in the 2003 document have since been proven to be false.

Mr. Fysh told MailOnline, “I was concerned for a while about the quality of the data and the quality of the analysis by the medical advisory team.

“Obviously the trends are serious, especially in some areas in the North West and North East, London and the Midlands, and we have to respect that.

“Trust is everything in this … we need to build trust in the system. That's why we don't have to produce dodgy charts like the Iraq war. A shady dossier does not create public trust. The opposite is true. & # 39;

Tory MP Peter Bone also complained that the lockdown decision appeared to be justified with a "seedy dossier on Covid charts".

"It feels to me like we're getting propaganda," he said. “We only got things that proved the fall of the government.

& # 39; These numbers now appear to be based on incorrect assumptions or incorrectly calculated.

& # 39; Others pointing in a different direction were not disclosed. So it's really a seedy dossier.

“I wasn't there when the Iraq decision was made, but apparently this dossier was created to support politics rather than providing neutral information for people to choose. Perhaps all of the information we've seen is being made to aid a decision already made. & # 39;

The biggest drop was in Rutland in the East Midlands, where infections fell by almost 40 percent from 107.7 to 65.12 cases per 100,000 people.

In the third stage, infections in Liverpool and Lancashire decreased by more than ten percent in all local authorities. It was the biggest sign yet that the toughest restrictions – forcing restaurants to only offer takeout meals, banning household mixing, and closing pubs – were lowering infections.

Both have been under the restrictions for about two weeks, which experts say is roughly the length of time it will take for the interventions to take effect.

This is because anyone infected by the time the measures are taken will usually get rid of the virus in a week or two.

In the Greater Manchester metropolitan area third, infections decreased in seven out of ten local authorities, while in no area did infections rise above seven percent.

Data on the city's infection rates are only available for the first ten days. Tier three measures have been implemented so the effects of the restrictions are not yet clear. However, the declines signal that the highest level has reached its goal of suppressing escalating infections.

At the other end of the scale, the data showed that the rate of infections was still higher in some areas: The largest surge in infections was seen in Medway, Kent, where infections rose 55 percent from 88.31 to 136.42 per 100,000.

It was followed by Hull, where infections rose 52 percent from 300.3 to 457.3 per 100,000.

Kevin McConway, professor emeritus of applied statistics at the Open University, told MailOnline that the data suggests that the tiered system is working, especially in the north.

"(This decrease) is good, and many of those that have increased are in the south of England, where rates are particularly low," he said. "It could look a lot worse, but it's reasonably positive."

He added that the climbs in the south required further action: “You can think of the country in two parts; In the north, before this new lockdown began today, there were these fairly strict measures in place in many places.

“But when you go south the rates were lower, but then they tend to go up faster. Perhaps something more was needed in the south than in the north because the infection rates have not yet fallen far enough. "

Professor Paul Hunter, an infectious disease expert at the University of East Anglia, told MailOnline the data suggests that infections "slowed" across England in the past week.

"Tier three appears to be decreasing the number on average, while the cases in Tier 1 have continued to increase on average," he said. "Tier Two has a small drop, but way too soon to be sure."

“I think that while the tier system has had a good impact, it may not have as much as it has been able to do because of delays in moving local authorities to higher levels, even when it was required. Too early to be confident. & # 39;

In London, infection rates fell in 26 out of 32 boroughs, showing that tier 2 restrictions – banning pubs and restaurants with other households from visiting – also stuck transmission.

The biggest drops were seen in Kensington and Chelsea, where the infection rate fell nearly 30 percent from 157.56 to 112.73 per 100,000. The capital city's Ealing hotspot also saw infections decline by 26 percent, from 231.71 to 171.15 per 100,000.

However, Havering saw the largest surge in infections, which rose 16.7 percent from 171 to 199.6 per 100,000.

Above are the Covid-19 infection rates in the London boroughs for the week ending October 24, according to official figures

Above are the Covid-19 infection rates in the London boroughs for the week ending October 24, according to official figures













% Change











Infection rate











* These data refer to the week ending November 1st over the half-year period

No local authority in the capital has an infection rate below 100 per 100,000, and no authority in England has an infection rate below 20 per 100,000 – the level at which the government is considering quarantine measures for travel to a foreign country.

Dr. Simon Clarke, associate professor of cell biology at the University of Reading, told MailOnline that it was not surprising that the third tier areas were showing major dips.

"I think it's fair to say that when you look at the top drops they are either in places like Merseyside, Lancashire or Manchester," he said.

"There seems to be some kind of correlation depending on when the locations were more restrictive."

He added that the second ban was imposed because "events overtook us".

“I think the plains may not have been pushed up as aggressively as they should have been in some places.

"I think there is a suggestion that some places might have ascended faster."

University of Leicester Professor Anthony Brookes told MailOnline that the coronavirus outbreak appeared to be on a "plateau".

In response to the data, he said the decline in infections was "no surprise".

& # 39; It is fully in line with the trend that has been showing on various datasets over the past few weeks, which makes it even more surprising that the government claims they did not know or were planning the current lockdown and marketing to take into account the public.

& # 39; A similar plateau and scattered decline in Covid-19 death rates are equal to or even more apparent than the government's own data.

& # 39; None of this may be due to the current lockdown (which has only just begun) but whether or to what extent this is due to the Tier system is unclear.

Covid-19 cases are declining in England in the under 40s but are still increasing in the elderly

Coronavirus infection rates declined among those under 40 last week but continued to rise in the elderly, Public Health England figures showed today.

In its weekly report, PHE claimed that cases per person among teenagers decreased by a fifth (21 percent) during the half year, while infections also decreased among school children and people aged 20 and over.

However, infections continued to rise in middle-aged and older adults, with the largest increase seen in people in their sixties, whose cases increased by six percent.

People over 60 are most at risk of dying when they get Covid-19. Therefore, it is vital for the government to keep rates down in this age group.

Data from Public Health England shows that infection rates in younger age groups decreased in the last week - week 44 - although they are still significantly higher than in older populations

Data from Public Health England shows that infection rates in younger age groups decreased in the last week – week 44 – although they are still significantly higher than in older populations

Although the second wave started with the most infections in children and students, it has now invaded older groups and resulted in an increase in hospital admissions and deaths.

PHE's report also found that test positivity – the percentage of tests that gave positive results – rose to almost one in ten last week.

However, this may be because the tests wore off during the half semester because people don't come forward as often during school holidays, officials said, meaning that even if the outbreak had stayed the same or shrunk slightly, that Positivity would still have increased.

The number of people tested has decreased in the past week as it was half a semester, which according to the PHE was a normal effect of the school holidays. As a result, the positivity rose to about one in ten tests for experts

The number of people tested has decreased in the past week as it was half a semester, which according to the PHE was a normal effect of the school holidays. As a result, the positivity rose to about one in ten tests for experts

The UK had 96,000 fewer tests in the week ending November 1 than the week before, despite the swab trend increasing by 100,000 a week in October. As a result, the weekly positive cases also dropped from 153,000 to 150,000.

"Other explanations, such as people's voluntary social distancing in October when they found the virus spread across the UK, and herd immunity establishment are at least as likely as explanations."

The data is based on confirmed cases of coronavirus by sample date, which is the date the swab was removed, not the date it was processed by the laboratories.

There is a delay of about five days between removing the swab and testing it for the virus, so statisticians cannot calculate infection rates until all swabs have been processed.

Scientists have warned that coronavirus infection rates may have been artificially suppressed by the halftime break, which saw around 20,000 fewer smears being taken each day across England as the number dropped from 172,000 to 150,000.

A health ministry spokesman said the number of tests completed fell because fewer people asked about them at half-time.

They said this was due to a change in people's routines which meant fewer swabs booked.

The decrease in number of tests completed is based on the first three days of the half year (October 26-28), the last data for which data is available.

However, the number of completed works varies by region.

In Greater Manchester, slightly more tests are said to have been completed over the period, at nearly 13,000 swabs per day.

In Lancashire, the number of jobs completed fell 16 percent from 6,341 to 5,343 per day, in Lancashire by 13 percent from 7,207 to 6,280 per day and in London by 18 percent from 19646 to 16,126 per day-day.

Although the numbers decreased, which affects infection rates, experts pointed out that in many areas where tests had increased, the number of infections identified had also decreased.

In Hounslow, the only neighborhood in London where the total number of smears completed has not decreased, the number of infections found decreased by 18.5 percent, from 196 to 159.8 per 100,000.

This adds weight to the suggestion that coronavirus cases were already declining and the UK's first wave had peaked before the second lockdown was imposed.

Economists and politicians lined up today to criticize the government's decision to impose a second lockdown in England. The data already clearly showed that cases were falling in many areas.

Christopher Snowdon, director of lifestyle economics at the Institute for Economic Affairs, said: “Infection rates were declining in many parts of England before the Prime Minister made his announcement on Saturday, and yet he appears to have been more convinced of the theoretical models adopted secretly around.

"The experience of places like Nottingham and Newcastle shows that the tide can be turned without resorting to the nuclear option of lockdown."

Er fügte hinzu: "Es wurde kein Versuch unternommen, das" vernünftige Worst-Case-Szenario "für den Lebensunterhalt, das Einkommen und die psychische Gesundheit der Menschen vorherzusagen. Wir haben auch keine Erklärung dafür erhalten, warum Menschen in Penzance ihren Arbeitsplatz verlieren müssen, um Infektionen in Salford zu reduzieren. Die für die fehlerhafte Modellierung verantwortlichen Personen sollten für die folgende wirtschaftliche Katastrophe zur Rechenschaft gezogen werden. “

Der konservative Abgeordnete Peter Bone sagte gegenüber MailOnline, dass der PHE-Bericht genau darlegte, was er in Northamptonshire sah, und schlug vor, dass die Tiers vor der pauschalen Sperrung gearbeitet hätten.

Er beklagte sich auch darüber, dass die Sperrentscheidung mit einem irakischen „zwielichtigen Dossier von Covid-Graphen“ gerechtfertigt zu sein schien.

„Aus diesem Grund fiel es mir schwer zu verstehen, warum wir den Tier-Ansatz aufgegeben haben. Und wir wissen jetzt durch ihr eigenes Eingeständnis, dass die Modellierung falsch war “, sagte er.

„Es gibt Lügen, verdammte Lügen und Covid-Statistiken. Niemand hat erklärt, warum wir den Tier-Ansatz aufgegeben haben, es sei denn, sie haben dieses schreckliche Modell von Wissenschaftlern gesehen, die sagten, dass jeden Tag 4.000 Menschen sterben werden. Im Moment scheint es keine Beweise dafür zu geben, dass wir uns in diese Richtung bewegen. "

Herr Bone fügte hinzu: „Es fühlt sich für mich so an, als würden wir Propaganda bekommen. Wir bekamen nur Dinge, die den Fall der Regierung bewiesen.

'Diese Zahlen scheinen nun auf falschen Annahmen zu beruhen oder falsch berechnet worden zu sein. Andere, die in eine andere Richtung weisen, wurden nicht bekannt gegeben. Es ist also wirklich ein zwielichtiges Dossier. & # 39;

Ein anderer konservativer Abgeordneter, Marcus Fysh, sagte gegenüber MailOnline: „Ich war eine Weile besorgt über die Qualität der Daten und die Qualität der Analyse durch das medizinische Beratungsteam.

„Offensichtlich sind die Trends ernst, insbesondere in einigen Gebieten im Nordwesten und Nordosten, in London und in den Midlands, und wir müssen dies respektieren.

„Vertrauen ist alles in diesem… wir müssen das Vertrauen in das System aufbauen. Deshalb müssen wir auch keine zwielichtigen Charts wie den Irak-Krieg produzieren lassen. Ein zwielichtiges Dossier schafft kein öffentliches Vertrauen. Das Gegenteil ist wahr.'


Eine offizielle Vorhersage, dass die Todesfälle durch Coronaviren bald die in der ersten Welle registrierten Todesfälle überschreiten würden, wurde von der Regierung stillschweigend korrigiert. Sie wurde gestern Abend veröffentlicht, weil sie zu hoch waren.

Die Projektionen führten dazu, dass das Land von einer zweiten nationalen Sperre betroffen war, und wurden letzten Samstag auf einer Pressekonferenz in der Downing Street gezeigt.

Sie behaupteten, dass England bis Anfang Dezember bis zu 1.500 Todesfälle pro Tag verzeichnen würde, weit mehr als die in der ersten Welle verzeichneten Todesfälle.

Aber die Zahlen, die im ganzen Land Alarm auslösten, wurden jetzt geändert, "nachdem ein Fehler gefunden wurde".

Die überarbeiteten Zahlen deuten nun darauf hin, dass der zweite Höchststand mit 1.010 Todesfällen pro Tag bis zum 8. Dezember wahrscheinlich dem ersten mit dem Worst-Case-Szenario entsprechen wird – ein ähnlicher Wert wie im April.

Die Vorhersagen für Krankenhauseinweisungen wurden ebenfalls von 9.000 bis Anfang Dezember auf 6.190 revidiert.

Die britische Statistikbehörde sagte, die Regierung und die dezentralen Verwaltungen müssten die Datenquelle, die in öffentlichen Briefings verwendet wird, und die vollständigen Zahlen dahinter klarstellen. Es fügte hinzu: „Die Verwendung von Daten wurde nicht konsequent durch die rechtzeitige Bereitstellung transparenter Informationen unterstützt.

Infolgedessen besteht die Möglichkeit, die Öffentlichkeit zu verwirren und das Vertrauen in die Statistik zu untergraben.

„Es ist wichtig, dass Daten so ausgetauscht werden, dass Transparenz und Klarheit gefördert werden. Es sollte in einer klaren und zugänglichen Form mit entsprechenden Erläuterungen zu Kontext und Quellen veröffentlicht werden. Es sollte allen zum Zeitpunkt der öffentlichen Bezugnahme auf die Informationen zur Verfügung gestellt werden. "

Der Wachhund fügte hinzu: „Es ist klar, dass diejenigen, die an der Pandemie arbeiten, einem erheblichen Druck ausgesetzt sind. Volle Transparenz ist jedoch von entscheidender Bedeutung für das Verständnis der Öffentlichkeit und das Vertrauen der Öffentlichkeit in Statistiken und diejenigen, die sie verwenden. "

Die Folien enthalten jetzt einen Hinweis mit der Aufschrift: "Die Darstellungen auf den Folien vier und fünf wurden geändert, nachdem ein Fehler gefunden wurde."

Die Folien enthalten jetzt einen Hinweis mit der Aufschrift: "Die Darstellungen auf den Folien vier und fünf wurden geändert, nachdem ein Fehler gefunden wurde."

The revised figures now suggest the second peak is likely to be on par with the first with the worst-case scenario at 1,010 deaths a day by December 8

The revised figures now suggest the second peak is likely to be on par with the first with the worst-case scenario at 1,010 deaths a day by December 8

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