The most recent data of infection rates of Covid-19 coronavirus have been released by Public Health England (PHE), with a number of 'hotspots' still showing high rates of the infection.

The data showed the number of cases of coronavirus per 100,000 population, and demonstrated that boroughs in South West London remained with relatively low infection rates by that metric compared to other areas of the country as of July 1.

The rates were calculated "based on tests that have been carried out in laboratories ('pillar 1' of the Government's testing programme) and in the wider community ('pillar 2')," PHE said.

Of all of the boroughs in South West London, Merton had the highest rate of infection, with 4.4 people out of every 100,000 according to the data.

That was significantly higher than the second-most infected borough, neighbouring Wandsworth, which returned an infection rate of 2.8 according to the figures.

Directly South of Merton, Sutton had an infection rate of 2.0, below Wandsworth but higher than a number of other South West London boroughs.

Of those, Croydon's infection rate was 1.6, Kingston's was 1.1 and Richmond's was the lowest with 1.0 i.e. one in every 100,000 people were infected with Covid-19 as of July 1 according to testing data.

Meanwhile in neigbouring Surrey, the infection rate stood at 3.7 people per 100,000, PHE revealed.

Nationwide, Leicester had by far the highest infection rate of any regional authority in the country, with a figure of 140.2.

That was followed by Bradford (69.4) and Barnsley (54.7).

Despite the easing of a number of quarantine restrictions in recent days in the UK and across Europe, the coronavirus pandemic is worsening according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

On July 4, the WHO reported the biggest ever daily rise in confirmed cases, with 211,411 new Covid-19 cases reported, up 20.31 per cent from the previous day.

Globally, as of 11.54am, July 5 2020, there have been 11,108,580 confirmed cases of Covid-19, including 527,835 deaths, as reported by the WHO.

Of those, the UK has had 284,280 confirmed cases of Covid-19, with 44,131 confirmed deaths.