Sussex coronavirus cases: Animation shows meteoric rise since December as lockdown begins

With Sussex preparing to join the rest of the UK in another national lockdown, it is easy to forget the sense of optimism that followed the end of November’s restrictions.

Monday, 4th January 2021, 8:31 pm
Updated Monday, 4th January 2021, 10:22 pm
Sussex coronavirus cases up to January 4, 2021 SUS-210401-192508001

At the end of November, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a move to the three-tiered system that categorised areas as medium, high or very high risk.

But cases continued to soar and, soon after, a fourth tier was announced – first for parts of Kent and East Sussex, before encompassing all of the South East and much of the south coast.

The worrying spike in numbers has been driven by a new, more contagious form of the virus which began sweeping across the South before moving into the rest of the country.

Up until a few months ago, areas such as Hastings boasted some of the lowest numbers of coronavirus cases.

But as this graphic shows, once the new variant took hold it got out of hand, fast, with the infection rate now dwarfing the national average in almost every part of Sussex.

The rollout of the Oxford-AstraZeneca and PfizerBioNTech vaccines has provided a potential light at the end of the tunnel, but these figures show how quickly the virus can get out of control if left unchecked.

Sussex has now, along with the rest of the UK, been placed into a lockdown similar to the one that started in March.

Arguably the largest change is the closure of all schools and colleges.