Covid: Derbyshire Dales spike 'linked to outbreak at HMP Sudbury'

  • Published
HMP SudburyImage source, Google
Image caption,
HMP Sudbury is an open prison housing male inmates

A Covid outbreak at a prison is the reason a rural area of Derbyshire has the highest infection rate in the country, health bosses have said.

In Derbyshire Dales, the rate per 100,000 people jumped from 60.8 to 179.7 in the week up to 7 March - an increase of 195%.

Derbyshire's director of public health Dean Wallace said the rise was due to an outbreak at open prison HMP Sudbury.

The number of actual cases in the district increased from 44 to 130.

In England, the current average infection rate per 100,000 people is 59.6.

Mr Wallace said: "Derbyshire Dales has been consistently the lowest or the second lowest district in Derbyshire and has had low rates since the start compared to elsewhere.

"Community transmission is still falling. The reason the rates have jumped up the way they have done is linked to an outbreak at the prison."

In a statement, HMP Sudbury said it was working with Public Health England to "keep everyone safe and minimise the spread".

It added: "We understand that this is a time of concern but we can assure everyone that we are following PHE advice and their guidance to ensure that we bring this outbreak to a close as soon as we safely can."

Last month, an outbreak at HMP Stocken in Rutland caused England's smallest county to rise to the top of the infection rate table.

Follow BBC East Midlands on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Send your story ideas to

Related Internet Links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.