HASTINGS has the lowest rate of infection for coronavirus in England.

The equivalent of just 47 per 100,000 of the Hastings population is believed to have contracted the illness.

This is way below the national average, which is thought to be 244 per 100,000 people in England.

The figures for Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland are 365, 251 and 220 respectively, according to data released by the Office for National Statistics.

As of yesterday, there had been 663 confirmed cases of coronavirus in East Sussex, including Hastings.

West Sussex had almost double the number of people diagnosed with the illness, a total of 1,274.

Most Hastings residents rely on sites operated by East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust for their healthcare. These include the Conquest Hospital in St Leonards, Eastbourne District General Hospital, Bexhill Hospital and the Rye, Winchelsea and District Memorial Hospital.

Across sites operated by the trust, there have been 78 deaths of patients who have tested positive for coronavirus, fewer than other hospital trusts in the county, such as Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals where the toll is 121.

  • The coronavirus Sussex Crisis Fund has been set up to help those affected by the pandemic. The Argus’s charity and American Express have each donated £50,000 to kick-start the appeal. Grants will usually be for up to £5,000. More information is available at www.sussexgiving. org.uk/apply. To donate visit www.totalgiving.co.uk/appeal/sussexcrisisfund