A new interactive map shows the extent of coronavirus rates in different parts of the UK amid the national lockdown.

The map divides the country into local authorities and is led by Department of Health data.

It comes as Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a national lockdown on Monday as coronavirus cases are rapidly rising.

Yesterday the UK recorded its highest ever number of daily coronavirus infections – the day after Boris Johnson plunged England into its third national lockdown.

The worst affected areas, such as Epping Forest and Redbridge – where rates have risen above 1,300 cases per 100,000 people in the past week – are shown in dark blue and purple.

It comes as the country was plunged in to a national lockdown
It comes as the country was plunged in to a national lockdown

Parts of the country that are less badly hit – including Gwynedd in Wales where the rate is 73 cases per 100,0000 people – are coloured in light yellow and orange.

While testing is much more readily available now than during the first peak of the pandemic, suggesting a higher proportion of infections are being detected, cases have nonetheless reached record highs this week.

For the first time more than 60,000 positive tests were returned in a 24 hour period on Tuesday.

Those who have been keeping a beady eye on the Government's coronavirus case data over the past weeks will have spotted an alarming trend.

After the end of the nationwide lockdown at the beginning of December cases rocketed in large parts of England, particularly the South East.

Even with the Government scrambling to tighten restrictions over the Christmas period, infection rates are continuing to rise.

The UK recorded a highest daily toll of 60,000 cases
The UK recorded a highest daily toll of 60,000 cases

Boris Johnson has blamed the spike not on the easing of restrictions at the start of the cold festive period, such as the reopening of pubs, but on a new strain of the virus.

In a bid to get the numbers under control the PM triggered an England wide lockdown, which kicked in this morning.

Sage member Professor John Edmunds has backed the Government's actions, arguing that "really major additional measures" are immediately needed to control the spread of coronavirus, with school closures being the "biggest lever" available.

The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine scientist told BBC Radio 4's PM programme yesterday: "We're in a really difficult situation.

By December 31 the centre of infections had moved to the South East
By December 31 the centre of infections had moved to the South East

"The new strain is significantly more transmissible than the old strains.

"So we have to take significant extra measures to stop the NHS from becoming overwhelmed with Covid patients.

"Unfortunately we are going to have to take some really major additional measures, I can't see any other way out of it."The biggest lever that has only partly been pulled is school closures.

"That would have the biggest effect of a single measure and I can see that happening."

He later added: "What we have to do now, and it's horrible I know, but we have to take really quite stringent steps right now and as stringent as we can right now."

Prof Edmunds rejected suggestions that a lack of public compliance with restrictions is a major issue, saying: "I don't think that's a major issue myself, I think people are pretty compliant."