THE council's latest covid tracker underlines the recent surge in coronavirus cases in St Helens.

The local authority's weekly breakdown of cases shows there were 1,071 COVID-19 positive tests between December 30 and January 5.

This equates to a rate of 593.1 per 100,000 of the population.

Of these cases, 192 of them were from a lateral flow test (LFT), the local authority says.

Asymptomatic test centres offering LFTs were launched at St Mary's Market, Chester Lane Community Centre in Sutton and Grange Valley Youth Centre, Haydock in December.

These do not include more recent days' data.

The Liverpool City region shared a seven-day infection rate up to January 7 showing a rate of 799.8 per 100,000 as numbers continued to rise.

In the council data up to January 5, by date of specimen, January 2 and 3 were the days with the highest number of cases, with 207 and 202 respectively.

St Helens Star:

By ward during the seven-day period, Thatto Heath had the most cases with 96, which equated to a rate of 733.9 per 100,000, the second highest in the borough.

Haydock ward had the second highest number of cases with 86, which gave the area the highest rate in St Helens at 745.2 per 100,000.

West Park ward recorded 82 cases, a rate of 719.2 per 100,000.

St Helens Star:

Rainford recorded the fewest cases with 42 (545 per 100,000), while Moss Bank had 52 and Bold and Parr both had 53.

Parr had the lowest infection rate at 403 per 100,000 with Moss Bank 469.1 per 100,000 and Bold 534.3 per 100,000.

By age, the 18 to 29-year-old category accounted for 289 cases, one more than the 288 cases among 30 to 44-year-olds.

St Helens Star:

Meanwhile, 256 were among 45 to 59-year-olds and there were 136 in the 60 to 79-year-old category.

Children (0 to 17) accounted for 76 while the 80-plus age group saw 26 cases.

Out of the positive tests recorded, 559 (52.19 per cent) were among females, 511 (47.71 per cent) were males, with one unknown gender.