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Coronavirus cases in Suffolk now at 87 and 244 in Essex

PUBLISHED: 15:47 29 March 2020 | UPDATED: 16:25 29 March 2020

A deserted playground in Holywells Park in Ipswich. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

A deserted playground in Holywells Park in Ipswich. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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Suffolk and Essex have seen another rise in the number of coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours.

The figure in Suffolk is now 87, a rise of 13, while in Essex it is now 244, an increase of 31 for the same period.

In the NHS region of East of England the figures rose by more than 130 in the same period, from 1,001 to 1,139 confirmed cases.

The figures came as it was announced today that Felixstowe police hero and Stars of Suffolk winner John Hood had died from the virus.

Mr Hood, aged 66, died in Ipswich Hospital more than a week after being admitted on March 20.

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The popular PCSO won a Stars of Suffolk award in 2016 for diving into the sea off Felixstowe beach to rescue four girls who were in danger of drifting out to sea in a rubber dinghy.

A patient at James Paget University Hospital in Gorleston, near Great Yarmouth in Norfolk, has also died from the virus, it was announced.

Nationally, the number of people who have died after contracting coronavirus is now 1,228 - an increase of 209 in 24 hours.

It is the second biggest day-on-day rise, although it is smaller than the 260 increase reported the day before

John Hood pictured in 2016 when, as a PCSO, he rescued four teenage girls from the sea at Felixstowe. Picture: Sarah Lucy BrownJohn Hood pictured in 2016 when, as a PCSO, he rescued four teenage girls from the sea at Felixstowe. Picture: Sarah Lucy Brown

But it is likely too early to attribute to any success to the social-distancing measures.

The Department of Health said today that as of 9am on 29 March 2020, a total of 127,737 people had been tested for COVID-19 (coronavirus) of which 108,215 were confirmed negative and 19,522 were confirmed positive.

Cabinet minister Michael Gove warned today that the coronavirus lockdown will be in place for a “significant period” and could last longer if people do not stick to the rules.

MORE: Heroic Felixstowe PCSO John Hood dies in hospital from coronavirus

The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster’s warning came after the announcement that Prime Minister Boris Johnson is to write to every household with a warning he could impose stricter measures.

Mr Gove declined to say what the tougher rules could look like with the public confined to their homes for all but essential travel and for once-daily exercise.

“Everyone is making a sacrifice and I appreciate the scale of that sacrifice,” he told the Andrew Marr Show on BBC1.

“But the reason all of us are making these sacrifices is because all of us will have people whom we love who are at risk from this virus.

“I can’t make an accurate prediction, but everyone does have to prepare for a significant period when these measures are still in place.”

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