An 'incredibly difficult' year: Anniversary of borough's first Covid case

People pass a COVID-19 test centre sign at a walk-through testing centre. Picture: Andrew Milligan/

Islington recorded its first Covid case on March 8, 2020. - Credit: PA

It is exactly one year today since Islington had its first outbreak of Covid-19. 

On March 8, 2020 Islington recorded its first case of the new coronavirus, but it would be more than two weeks before the country went into its first lockdown on March 23. 

Since then, the UK's coronavirus death toll has risen to nearly 125,000 and the country is amid its third lockdown - but as of March 7, more than 22 million people had received their first dose of a vaccine as part of the country's biggest inoculation roll out. 

In the last week, seven people have tested positive for Covid in Islington, down 22 cases from the week before, according to government figures.

At the peak of the second wave in January this year, the Royal Free and Whittington trusts reported more than 700 beds were occupied by Covid patients.

As of February 28, Islington Council reported a total of 14,576 confirmed cases in the borough over the whole course of the pandemic, 2.1 per cent of London’s total.

Cllr Sue Lukes, Islington Council’s executive member for community safety, said: “It has been a year of sacrifices, kindness, tragedy and incredible efforts.

"People in Islington came together to help - from the incredible work of the NHS in treating Covid patients and rolling out the vaccine, to mutual aid groups and the We Are Islington helpline, who have brought food, medicine and hope to the people who need it most.

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“Today I saw the kindness quilt that celebrates that Islington spirit. 

“It has been an incredibly difficult 12 months, and everyone who has stayed home during lockdown, and made changes to their everyday lives to help keep others safe, has helped us all, and we are hugely thankful.

“It’s a great tragedy that so many people in our community have been made seriously ill, and been lost to this terrible virus, and it’s so important that we all keep doing our bit to protect one another." 

She encouraged anyone who needs help during the ongoing crisis to contact the We Are Islington helpline on 020 7527 8222.