Thurrock in Essex has seen some of the highest infection levels in the country over the last few weeks, but before the beginning of December struck the area has been left relatively untouched during the pandemic compared to other areas.
The rapid increase in cases in early December, and then through early January, was staggering with Thurrock reaching its worst point in mid-December when it had the highest infection level in England
While on December 1, 2020, Thurrock registered 62 positive cases of coronavirus, by December 17 the daily amount had increased to 394 and by December 29 the confirmed daily cases amounted to 563.
With Thurrock bordering some of the worst hit places in London it was perhaps no surprise that it would suffer in much the same way as Barking and Dagenham, Havering and Redbridge did towards the end of 2020.
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Before the pandemic thousands of Thurrock residents made the daily commute into London for work. Places such as Grays, South Ockendon and Avely were just a stone’s throw away from the capital so when coronavirus struck in Spring 2020 many residents in West Essex saw their lives dramatically change.
During one particularly low moment for residents Basildon and Thurrock Hospital recorded the second highest number of coronavirus deaths in the whole of England in early January.
Between December 6, 2020 and January 2, 2021, 20 people sadly died from coronavirus at the hospital – six less than Dartford and Gravesham Hospital in Kent.
In total 287 people died from Covid in Thurrock, with April 12 singled out as the worst day when 10 people sadly passed away.
The figures may not appear as dramatic as England’s largest cities such as London and Liverpool but based on the size of the population the people of Thurrock have suffered badly.
In some of the most recent Government updates the infection rate in Thurrock was recorded as 1453.5 cases per 100,000 people in the seven days up to January 5, and in the seven days up to January 2 the rate was even higher at 1,566.5.
However in one small glimmer of hope the most recent data does suggest a changing outlook, in the seven days up to January 6, the rate of infection fell slightly from 1,413.3 to 1,340.5.