Concerns over divide in vaccine rates - what's the situation where you live?

Summer in Great Yarmouth on the seafront. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Parts of Great Yarmouth, including Yarmouth Parade, have some of the worst Covid vaccine rates in Norfolk and Suffolk - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2019

Covid vaccination rates in parts of King's Lynn, Great Yarmouth and Ipswich are among Norfolk and Suffolk's worst, and continue to fall far below the national average. 

A number of neighbourhoods in the three towns consistently rank poorly when it comes to the percentage of each age group to receive their first jab. 

Rachel Pooley gets her first Covid-19 vaccination at the Corn Exchange in King's Lynn. Picture: Ian

A Covid jab being administered in King's Lynn. Parts of the west Norfolk town have a poor vaccination rate - Credit: Ian Burt

Across 200 parts of Norfolk and Suffolk, latest figures show Yarmouth Parade is at the very bottom of the pile for five different age groups.

The area has seen 87.3pc of its 75 to 79-year-olds get initial doses, compared to 99.5pc in the best performing area of Rickinghall, Walsham le Willows and Gislingham in Mid Suffolk. 

It is way off the pace for younger groups, with only 63.9pc of its 50 to 54-year-old population going to vaccination appointments thus far. 

That compares to a table-topping 94.9pc in the Broadland area of Coltishall, Buxton and Frettenham, and 94.3pc in Harleston and Pulham. 

The Ipswich neighbourhoods of Westgate, Gipping and Chantry Park, Ipswich Central, and Maidenhall, Stoke and Port feature heavily at the wrong end of the list for each age group. 

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In King's Lynn, the neighbourhoods of North Lynn and Town, South Lynn and West Lynn continue to struggle.

Dr Christina Green at the Castle Quarter Vaccination Centre in Norwich holding one of the vaccinatio

Parts of Great Yarmouth, Ipswich and King's Lynn have poor Covid vaccintion rates - Credit: Danielle Booden

The worrying statistics have emerged amid increasing concern over the spread of the Indian strain of the virus.

But Tracy Williams, an advance nurse practitioner who works with Norfolk and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group (NWCCG) on tackling inequalities, said health teams were working round the clock to get everyone on a level playing field.

"Overall we are doing really well, but we do know there are gaps in areas which might suffer from increased deprivation," added Mrs Williams. 

Tracy Williams, who works with Norfolk and Waveney CCG on tackling inequalities

Tracy Williams, who works with Norfolk and Waveney CCG on tackling inequalities - Credit: Norfolk and Waveney CCG

"It might be a struggle for people to get to appointments, there might be social economic reasons, or perhaps there is some hesitancy.

"We don't want places to feel like they are being left behind, so what we will do in those cases is ask 'what vaccination opportunities can we offer and how can we support people?'"

In Ipswich, a particular cause for concern is take-up in Westgate, where just 82.6pc of over-80s have accepted a vaccine. The national average is 93.8pc.

Roadworks on Bramford Road and Sproughton road, junction, Ipswich

The Ipswich neighbourhood of Westgate has one of the worst Covid vaccination rates in Norfolk and Suffolk - Credit: Archant

Moreover, only 65.2pc of 50 to 54-year-olds in the neighbourhood have so far been for a jab, compared to nationwide rate of 83.5pc.

After dedicating much of its focus in recent weeks to Great Yarmouth, with walk-in clinics and its vaccination bus, NWCCG will turn its attention to King's Lynn in the coming days. 

"Having the bus at Marine Parade in Yarmouth went really well, and we learned a lot from the flexible appointments," said Mrs Williams. 

"We have even done some knocking on doors which we are going to replicate, but it's about doing it in a positive way with community champions who can answer questions about hesitancy.

"One thing we are doing at the moment is going out to factory sites. Norfolk has a large migrant workforce who do long shifts and cannot always access vaccination centres.

"We often find with migrant workers that, if some are hesitant, others are the same. But on the other hand it works the same way - one goes for a vaccine and others will follow."

King's Lynn lockdown

Parts of King's Lynn have the worst Covid vaccination rates in Norfolk and Suffolk - Credit: Chris Bishop

The neighbourhoods with best and worst vaccination rates in Norfolk and Suffolk for each age group are as follows:

Over-80s

  • Best: Hethersett, South Norfolk - 99.6pc
  • Worst: Westgate, Ipswich - 82.6pc

75 to 79-year-olds

  • Best: Rickinghall, Walsham le Willows and Gislingham, Mid Suffolk - 99.5pc
  • Worst: Yarmouth Parade, Great Yarmouth - 87.3pc
Alan Muse, from Diss, receiving his COVID-19 vaccination at the new mass vaccination centre at Conna

There are concerns over low vaccine uptake in parts of Norfolk and Suffolk - Credit: Danielle Booden

70 to 74-year-olds

  • Best: Fleggburgh, Rollesby and Martham, Great Yarmouth - 99pc
  • Worst: Yarmouth Parade - 81.5pc

65 to 69-year-olds

  • Best: Bradwell North, Great Yarmouth - 98.2pc
  • Worst: Yarmouth Parade, Great Yarmouth - 79pc

60 to 64-year-olds

  • Best: Claydon and Bramford, Mid Suffolk - 97.2pc
  • Worst: Westgate, Ipswich - 74.7pc
A NHS staff member prepares Derek Downs for his first Covid-19 vaccination at the Corn Exchange in K

A patient about to receive their Covid vaccine at King's Lynn Corn Exchange - Credit: Ian Burt

55 to 59-year-olds

  • Best: North Sudbury and Long Melford, Babergh - 97.4pc
  • Worst: Yarmouth Parade, Great Yarmouth - 66.8pc

50 to 54-year-olds

  • Best: Coltishall, Buxton and Frettenham, Broadland - 94.9pc
  • Worst: Yarmouth Parade, Great Yarmouth - 63.9pc


Prime minister's plea to answer jab call

Prime Minister Boris Johnson

Prime minister Boris Johnson set out measures that are part of the four key steps that will bring the UK out of lockdown. - Credit: PA


Boris Johnson has once again urged anyone who not been for a vaccine already to answer the call.

The prime minister said uptake continued to be "very encouraging", as 37-year-olds began being invited to appointment on Tuesday.

Asked whether people refusing to get vaccinated should share the blame for potential deviation from the government's roadmap, Mr Johnson called the response so far "quite extraordinary".

"There was a poll I think done last night which showed that, of all the countries in the world, we are the most positive about vaccinations," he added. "The numbers are incredibly high.

"I know that some people have been more vaccine-hesitant than others but, actually, across the whole of society, the numbers continue to go up in every age group and that's very, very encouraging.

"To make the obvious point, I urge everybody who is eligible for a vaccine, when you get your call-up, come and get your jab."


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