A SPOTLIGHT is tonight being shone upon mid-Antrim by government officials after it emerged the local district has one of the highest rises in new cases per 100,000 people in the whole of the UK.
Figures published by national newspaper The Guardian show that the number of new cases in Mid & East Antrim in the last seven days made it third in the UK behind Oldham and Blackburn with Darwen.
It is understood a cluster of cases linked to a business in County Antrim is at the centre of moves by government officials to reduce the spread of the virus.
A source indicated to ‘Ballymena Daily’ this evening that premises belonging to the business could close for up to two weeks.
Health officials are expected to make an announcement on Thursday.
The rise in cases locally had raised fears about the type of government intervention in the Ballymena area.
On Wednesday the source said officials hoped a temporary closure of an individual business would help reduce the impact of the virus.
It is unknown if the authorities have any other specific plans for the Ballymena area in the short term.
The Mid & East Antrim area had the highest rise in cases in any local government district in Northern Ireland in the last week.
It is understood many of those cases are in the Ballymena area.
Last week a 32-year-old woman in the town died after contracting Covid-19.
On Wednesday afternoon it was announced there have been 10 new reported Covid cases in Mid & East Antrim in the last day – the highest rise in the last 24 hours of any district of Northern Ireland.
There were 34 new cases reported across the whole of Northern Ireland in the last 24 hours.
There have been 541 cases in Mid & East Antrim out of 13,039 people tested in the area since the pandemic started.
It is believed discussions have been taking place on Wednesday in sectors of government to discuss the way forward.