Original article from Kent Live
Coronavirus infection rates continue to rise in Kent, with ten of the county's 13 districts seeing a rise in infections over the past week.
Yesterday was June 21, the day the government had initially planned to ease all lockdown restrictions – dubbed Freedom Day.
However, a concerning spike in cases in recent weeks has seen that date postponed until July 19, amid rising infection numbers both in Kent and across England.
The spread of the highly-transmissible Delta variant has been blamed for the rapid increase in infections, which has seen the national infection rate more than quadruple over the last four weeks.
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The new strain has taken hold here in Kent, with some districts seeing the number of new coronavirus cases double in the space of one week, including the third-most infected area of Maidstone.
In the seven days leading to June 16 Maidstone recorded 99 new cases, compared to just 47 the week before.
Ashford and Sevenoaks have also seen some of the biggest increases in Kent.
Some 41 new COVID cases were recorded in Ashford in the last week, up from 27 the week before, giving the district an infection rate of 31.5 per 100,00 people.
In Sevenoaks, cases have risen significantly to give the region an infection rate of 51.3 per 100,000 people.
Despite these dramatic increases, every part of Kent remains well below England's national average infection rate of 89.3 per 100,000 people.
On the other end of the scale, Dover is the least infected part of Kent.
As one of the only districts to see cases drop in the latest data, it recorded an infection rate of 18.6, down from 26.2 the week before.
The full list of Kent infection rates
Here is the Kent list in full.
From left to right, it reads: name of local authority; rate of new cases in the seven days to June 16; number (in brackets) of new cases recorded in the seven days to June 16; rate of new cases in the seven days to June 9; number (in brackets) of new cases recorded in the seven days to June 9.
Areas marked in bold have recorded an increase.
Gravesham, 58.0 (62), 49.6, (53)
Dartford, 57.7 (65), 45.3, (51)
Maidstone, 57.6 (99), 27.4, (47)
Sevenoaks, 51.3 (62), 37.3, (45)
Medway, 44.2 (123), 43.1, (120)
Tonbridge and Malling, 40.9 (54), 34.1, (45)
Canterbury, 38.1 (63), 39.3, (65)
Tunbridge Wells, 36.2 (43), 27.0, (32)
Ashford, 31.5 (41), 20.8, (27)
Swale, 24.0 (36), 14.7, (22)
Folkestone and Hythe, 20.4 (23), 21.2, (24)
Thanet, 19.0 (27), 11.3, (16)
Dover, 18.6 (22), 26.2, (31)