HEALTH bosses say the number of Covid-19 cases has been on the rise in Bury - as residents are urged to observe reintroduced social distancing restrictions.

Twenty-five new cases were identified for the week ending July 27, the strategic commissioning board for Bury Clinical Commissioning Group has been told.

And although this still equates to a a relatively small number of cases overall, there has been a week-to-week spike, commissioners have heard.

Geoff Little, the borough council's chief executive and chief officers for the CCG, said in a report: "Over the past few weeks we have seen increases in Covid-19 case numbers in neighbouring districts and across Greater Manchester.

"In Bury we have seen a rise in the number of new cases over the last week. While the absolute numbers of cases in Bury remain small, there are signs of an upward trend in infections.

"For the week up to July 27, Bury had 25 new cases of Covid-19, an average rate of 1.9 per 100,000 per day with most cases spread across a greater numbers of households than was seen in the previous weeks. For the preceding three weeks the average rate was 1.2 per 100,000 per day."

Meanwhile Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham has called on the government to reinstate support for those forced to shield, after lockdown was restored in part, amid concerns over job security.

Mr Burnham said: "I listened to the Government when they came to me late on Thursday and asked for our support for new restrictions.

"I am now asking them to listen to us: please reinstate the shielding policy in Greater Manchester from first thing tomorrow. Failure to do so is wrong and inhumane."