A COVID-19 fatality has been reported in the New Forest for the first time in eight weeks, new figures show.
The death happened in hospital and brings the toll in the district this year to 133, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
As of today (Tuesday), government figures showed there had been a total of 571 confirmed in-stances of Covid-19 in the district this year.
It is an increase of 10 on the same time last week but slower than the rise of 37 the week before. The weekly increase had been accelerating from 23 two weeks ago and 17 the week before that.
The figures were released shortly before Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a tightening of restrictions, including asking office workers to work from home if they can.
From Thursday all pubs, bars and restaurants had to operate table-service only, except for takeaways, and must close at 10pm.
Masks must also now be worn in retail areas and taxis, and by indoor hospitality staff and customers except when seated at a table to eat or drink.
There were no deaths reported by the ONS in the BCP Council area, which includes Christchurch, meaning the total fatalities in the conurbation stay at 189.
Total confirmed cases of Covid-19 for the conurbation stood at 1,091 – up by 55. That also represents a slowing in the growth of extra cases, as last week the increase stood at 91. Previous rises were 42 and 28.
The weekly figures from the ONS relate to cause of death for fatalities which happened up to 11th September but were registered up to 19th September.
Last week the leader of Hampshire County Council urged people with coronavirus symptoms to keep trying to book a test despite delays in the system.
Cllr Keith Mans, who represents Brockenhurst, said that although the level of infection remains “relatively low” in the county, anyone potentially affected should make every effort to secure a test to help stop the spread.
However, he appealed to people without symptoms not to add to the pressure, and urged the government to allow greater local control to fix the problem.
This week’s regional R rates – the average number of people who get infected from some-one with the coronavirus – on Tuesday was in the range of 1.1-1.4 in the south-east and 0.9-1.6 in the south-west. A rate of more than one indicates the epidemic is growing.