COVID-19 cases in Shropshire remained high as restrictions were eased last week.

The latest figures issued by Shropshire Council for the seven-day period up to January 20 confirmed there was a five per cent increase from the previous week with 2,964 new cases reported.

There were also 65 beds occupied by Covid-19 patients and six Covid-19 related deaths in hospital.

Rachel Robinson, Shropshire Council’s director of public health, said: "The number of positive cases has risen very slightly during this time, and the rates remain high across Shropshire.

"While the data points towards us having passed the peak of Omicron infections, there is still widespread transmission in Shropshire.

"From a public health perspective, I would advise the public to remain cautious; and would strongly encourage the continued wearing of face coverings if you are in busy places or enclosed spaces with people you do not usually mix with, or when visiting more vulnerable people.

"The end of Plan B does not mean forgetting about the pandemic.

"Some measures will remain, like self-isolating for at least five full days if you get a positive PCR test.

"Living alongside coronavirus in 2022 means understanding and reducing risks, to do our bit to reduce transmission and keep our communities safe."

Simon Jones, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for adult social care and public health, added: "While many people will be glad to see a return to Plan A, it is important to remember that others still feel more comfortable wearing a face covering or social distancing.

"Please respect every individual’s personal choice as we move forward.

"It is, however, important that we all recognise the situation in Shropshire and that the virus is still very much here.

"I hope you will all continue to do what you can to minimise its spread."

The seven day infection rate in Shropshire was 910.8 per 100,000.

However, this was lower than the average for the West Midlands which was 1100.5 per 100,000 and the England as a whole which was 987.1 per 100,000.