The reproductive rate of coronavirus is currently thought to be fractionally under 1 in London, according to newly published data.

The information, provided by Public Health England, estimates the current ‘R-value’ for London to be at 0.95 – with a rating of 1 being the critical threshold where new cases would grow exponentially.

But concern has been raised after the data pointed to the R-value having to 1 in the NW and SW regions of England.

The Government's chief scientific adviser, Sir Patrick Vallance, told a virtual briefing with journalists on Friday the R-value for England was between 0.7 and 1, while it remained between 0.7 and 0.9 for the UK as a whole.

He said the prevalence of Covid-19 was on a "downward trajectory" in the UK, adding: "The prevalence of coronavirus, according to the ONS, is at 0.1%, with 53,000 people with Covid-19 in the past two weeks."

Wandsworth Times:

The above graph shows the historical estimated R-value for London - the data is not published daily

He said the incidence rate was at 0.7% per week, which meant there were "roughly" 39,000 new coronavirus cases each week.

Sir Patrick said: "The latest R-value calculation is between 0.7 and 0.9 for the UK as a whole, it may be a little bit higher in England it may be between 0.7 and 1, and there is a bit of regional variation."

He said there could be "some places" where the R-value is very close to one.

PHE said latest estimates, worked out in conjunction with Cambridge University's MRC Biostatistics Unit, show it is highly likely that R is below one in each other region of England.

Dr Yvonne Doyle, PHE medical director, said: "Our estimates show that the regional R numbers have increased although they remain below one for most of England - this is to be expected as we gradually move out of lockdown.

"It is vital that everyone continues with social distancing, practising good hand hygiene and must remain at home and order a test if they have symptoms."