Bedford Borough records over 10,000 COVID-19 cases as national R-rate falls


Bedford Borough has now recorded over 10,000 positive cases of COVID-19 (coronavirus) since the start of the pandemic.

Government data says there have now been 10,595 positive cases of COVID-19 in Bedford Borough, that works out at around 1 in 16 people tested positive for the virus.

It was announced today that the R-rate (the number used to determine how infectious a disease is) has fallen below ‘1’ across the UK for the first time since December.

It’s said to be the first indication recent tougher restrictions are working with the government saying the R-rate is now between 0.8. and 1.

The Telegraph reported that, according to The Department of Health and Social Care, ‘R’ is estimated to be below 1 in areas that have been under tighter restrictions the longest.

These include those in Tier 4 over Christmas, which included Bedford.

However, Bedford Borough Council has said the new variant of COVID-19 is spreading fast and one in three people who have the virus are said to not display any symptoms.

“To help slow the spread, we are reminding everyone of the importance of abiding by the lockdown regulations, remembering hands, face, space when you do need to go out, and the vital need to self-isolate when instructed to do so,” said Mayor Dave Hodgson.

Bedford Borough Council also said advised that “everyone acts like they’ve got it”.

“Only leave your home for the permitted reasons including work if you cannot work from home, buying essentials or seeking medical attention, or for your daily exercise,” said a spokesperson.

“If you are going out, remember to wash your hands regularly, wear a face covering, and make space by keeping at least 2m from others,” they added.

What are the symptoms?

If you develop any symptoms of COVID-19- a high temperature, a new continuous cough, or a loss/change to your sense of smell or taste, self-isolate immediately and book a test.

You should self-isolate if:

  • you have any symptoms of COVID-19 (a high temperature, a new, continuous cough or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste)
  • you have had a positive test for COVID-19
  • you live with someone who has symptoms or tested positive
  • you’re told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace, the NHS COVID-19 app, your workplace or education setting, or the Local Contact Tracing Team

It’s really important that you self-isolate when instructed to, and for the full amount of time.

If you are self-isolating there is support available to help people on low-income who cannot work from home and will lose income.

Support may be available to you whether you have never claimed benefits before, or if your current benefits are no longer enough.

There is information about this support on the Council’s website at

“The vaccine rollout has begun. We all need to pull together, play our part, and keep ourselves, our friends and families and our communities safe,” added the Mayor

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