Plans which would be implemented if Cumbria went into local coronavirus lockdown have been published.

A draft version of Cumbria’s Covid-19 Outbreak Control Plan was released by Colin Cox, the county’s director of public health, yesterday.

And he warned of dire consequences if residents let their guard down too early.

A public consultation will be held on the plan until the end of July.

It sets out how the county will combat the virus using the national NHS Test and Trace system, public information, infection prevention and control systems, case finding, testing and contact tracing, outbreak management and, if necessary, the implementation of ‘local lockdowns’.

The plan also explains who will make decisions about local measures.

It is already live, but a final version will be adopted by Cumbria’s Local Resilience Forum after the consultation.

Mr Cox said: “More than 400 people have died in Cumbria as a result of Covid-19 infection. It has been the largest mass fatality event the county has seen since World War Two.

“Because people have followed the rules, observed social distancing and taken steps to protect their communities, we now have a low rate of infection in the county.

“The evidence from elsewhere, in the UK and internationally, is that we must continue to be on our guard. This highly infectious disease has not been eradicated and could spread again quickly if we do not take precautions.

“We must balance this with the vital need to re-open our economy and other institutions and allow people to live their lives as normally as possible.

“But returning to how things were pre-Covid-19 is not possible if we want to prevent a second wave of infection, further damaging lockdowns, and more deaths.

“To keep Cumbria safe, and our economy and schools open, it is critical that people continue to follow the rules – observe social distancing, practice good hygiene, wear face masks where appropriate, get tested if you have symptoms and self-isolate if necessary or if you are asked to by contact tracers.”

Councillor Deborah Earl, cabinet member for Public Health and Communities, added: “This is a comprehensive plan that shows how Cumbria will work together to tackle this deadly virus.

“In some ways now may be the most dangerous time as people start to feel that the worst is over and things can get back to normal.

“We will all have to be constantly vigilant to stop the virus taking hold again.

"This is about everyone looking out for each other, behaving responsibly.”

The plan is subject to public consultation until July 31.

For details go to the county council website online at