Live updates: There are over 20,000 positive cases of coronavirus at UK universities

This map shows where coronavirus cases at UK universities are rising


Coronavirus cases are rising across the country, and students are moving back to university. This can only mean one thing: Coronavirus cases are on the rise at UK universities. A Sussex professor has estimated 14,000 students currently have Covid at UK universities.

Update: Friday 16th, 11am – there are now over 20,000 cases

The UCU says there are 20,084 cases at Higher Education institutions across the UK. UniCovid reports there are cases at 114 universities.

The number of cases at UK universities has more than doubled since this time last week, when it was reported there were just over 9,000 cases.

At Newcastle there are now over 1,770 total positive cases.

There have now been over 1,000 cases at Sheffield Uni since the start of term, and almost 800 at Sheffield Hallam.

Durham had 964 new cases last week, bringing their total since the start of term to over 1,200. The Uni has invested over £30,000 into policing Covid rules.

Bristol now has almost 700 cases, with new cases rising by almost 450 per cent in one week. Birmingham also has over 600 cases.

In Leeds, there were 269 cases last week, with over 900 cases since the start of term.

Other unis with new positive cases include Lincoln, Royal Holloway, UEA, Sunderland and King’s. New universities with reported cases of coronavirus include Bishop Grosseteste, Imperial College London and Leeds Trinity.

In other coronavirus news, a Norwich house party cost its hosts £30,000, as three UEA students were fined £10k each as a result of it. We found out what actually happens when you get a £10,000 house party fine, and what happens if you can’t afford it.

In Birmingham, students were given used coronavirus tests before the mistake was realised and the tests recollected. Some even used the already-used tests they had been given, saying they feel “violated”. They are now having to isolate as a result of cross-contamination, and the council has apologised.

Yesterday it was announced students could be kept at uni until 22nd December if they want to go home for Christmas, with the government reportedly considering a two-week circuit-breaker lockdown before Christmas.

This map shows where cases of coronavirus are now rising at UK universities:

Know about cases of coronavirus at your uni we’ve missed? Email [email protected]

Update: Tuesday 13th, 5pm – there are now 13,000 cases at 110 unis

UniCovid reports there are now over 13,000 cases of coronavirus, across 110 UK unis with confirmed cases.

Many student areas are the worst-hit Covid hotspots in the country, with Nottingham’s Lenton currently at the highest rate. Nottingham Uni currently has over 1,500 active cases of coronavirus.

There are almost 1,000 cases at Sheffield, and almost 800 at Sheffield Hallam.

Over 1,000 students are self-isolating at Lancaster, and there are at least 100 positive cases.

Over the weekend there were 139 new cases at Bristol, bringing the total to almost 400. There are currently 224 “live” cases at Edinburgh Uni, 100 fewer than last week.

Other confirmed cases include 87 at Loughborough, and 67 at Sussex.

New universities with reported cases of coronavirus include Southampton Solent, Chichester, Harper-Adams, Royal Agricultural Uni, Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts, University College Birmingham, Northampton, Uni of West London, Edge Hill, Hartpury.

In other coronavirus news, a Norwich houseparty cost hosts £30,000 after three UEA students were fined £10,000 each.

Exeter is giving isolating students a £40 “digital entertainment hamper”, and Sussex has announced a support package in which isolating students can get up to £40 a week.

Update: Friday, 12pm – there are now 100 unis with coronavirus

UniCovid reports there are now 100 UK unis with confirmed cases of coronavirus, and as of last night there were 9,276 cases confirmed in universities.

New universities with reported cases include Canterbury Christ Church, Falmouth, and Heriot-Watt in Edinburgh. There are also 13 confirmed cases at Uni of Central Lancashire.

York now has 144 cases, with over 1,000 students reportedly self-isolating. There are also 61 new cases at Aston, and nine at Bath Spa.

A Bristol halls is on lockdown after 40 of its 300 residents have tested positive. There are now cases among 254 students and three members of staff at the uni.

Two Durham colleges are on semi-lockdown for at least the next seven days, after “around 50” students living in each have coronavirus – at one, this means one in six students are currently positive.

At Sussex, all sports has been suspended until further notice due to a series of Covid outbreaks within teams. Liverpool have moved all teaching online until the end of the month.

Update: Thursday, 5pm – there are now almost 1,400 cases at Northumbria

UniCovid reports there are now 96 UK unis with confirmed cases of coronavirus.

1,389 students have now tested positive at Northumbria. Last week 770 were reported, and there have been 619 new cases since then.

At Newcastle, there have been 1,015 new cases in the last week. The week before that, there were only 94 cases amongst students, and seven members of staff.

There are now 733 cases at Sheffield, and 324 live Covid cases at Edinburgh Uni.

Durham Uni has had 251 cases since the start of term, including 219 in the last week.

81 students at Portsmouth are currently positive, and 50 at Sussex. There are also new cases at UWE in Bristol, Plymouth, Gloucestershire Uni, Nottingham Trent

Update: Thursday, 12pm – new cases at King’s, Bournemouth and Birmingham City

New universities with confirmed cases include 26 at Bradford, nine at Wolverhampton, six at Surrey, six at Lincoln, three at Winchester and two at Hertfordshire. There are also new cases Bolton, although the number is unconfirmed.

Between September 14th and October 5th, 130 students and staff tested positive a Birmingham City Uni.

There are now 74 cases at Bournemouth. There are 17 new cases at King’s College London, and in Hull five new cases have been reported, bring the total there to seven.

386 staff and students are self-isolating at LSE, after 11 have tested positive.

Update: Wednesday – there are over 500 cases at Sheffield, Leeds and MMU

UniCovid reports there are now 91 UK unis with confirmed cases of coronavirus.

There are now 589 cases at Sheffield, after over 100 students tested positive in one day.

Today, Leeds Uni confirmed there were 558 cases of coronavirus reported last week, including 130 in just one day.

There are over 500 cases at Manchester Met Uni, although this number does not include positive results from a “mass testing pilot” at two MMU halls last week.

From 30th September, 307 students and eight members of staff tested positive at Birmingham Uni.

Last week, it was reported there were 94 positive cases at Newcastle. This number has “risen significantly since then”, although the exact figure has not been given.

Today Edinburgh Uni confirmed there are a total of 321 “live cases” of coronavirus amongst their staff and students.

There are now 113 cases at York, and there are 121 active Covid cases at Bristol, including two members of staff.

At Oxford Brookes there are now 100 cases – 98 students and two members of staff.

There are 35 cases at UEA, 26 at Loughborough, 20 at De Montford Leicester, and 16 at Royal Holloway. 19 Cardiff students have tested positive for coronavirus, and over 100 are now self-isolating.

Yesterday it was reported there were 31 cases at Bath, and this figure has now risen to 48. Similarly, there are now 18 cases at Brighton, after a figure of five was reported yesterday.

In other coronavirus news, Manchester Uni is investigating students who have been hosting “Covid positive” parties.

The Northumbria UCU are demanding the uni VC’s resignation, after almost 800 cases were reported there last week. Many uni’s have now moved more teaching online, including Newcastle, Manchester and Man Met.

300 Exeter students told The Tab they have tested positive for coronavirus, in a poll. Exeter Uni is now in one of the top 10 Covid hotspots in England, along with other student areas in Manchester, Liverpool and Leeds.

Update: Tuesday 6th October – there are now over 1,000 cases at Manchester, and 770 at Northumbria

UniCovid reports there are 88 UK universities with coronavirus cases.

Today, Manchester Uni confirmed 1,041 students and 20 members of staff have tested positive for coronavirus since 21st September, two weeks ago.

On Friday, Northumbria Uni announced 770 students had tested positive, of which only 78 were symptomatic.

At Sheffield Uni, there have been 474 positive cases amongst students, and five staff, in the last week. There are also 369 cases at Sheffield Hallam.

There are 425 cases at Nottingham, equivalent to one in 80 students currently with positive coronavirus tests.

At Birmingham Uni, there are almost 300 confirmed cases. There are 268 at Edinburgh.

Liverpool Uni have not published up-to-date numbers, have released old data. Between 14th and 28th September, there were 161 students with positive Covid tests.

There are 166 cases at Queen’s Belfast, with almost 400 students and staff self-isolating.

There are also at least 122 cases at Aberdeen Uni, 94 at Newcastle, 88 at Oxford Brookes, 76 at Durham, 72 at York, 33 at St Andrews, 31 at Bath, 18 at Sussex, 12 at Southampton. 

There are also 55 at Queen Mary London, 26 at Warwick, 20 at Oxford, 15 at Teesside, 14 at Stirling, 13 at Lancaster, 11 at Brunel, nine at London South Bank, five at Brighton, four at KCL, and two at Loughborough. There are also two at Queens’ College Cambridge.

In Exeter, there have been 300 cases in the last three days, and “most are linked to the University”, although the exact number has not been given.

There are also unconfirmed numbers of positive cases at unis including Bristol, UCL, St Marys Twickenham, Nottingham Trent and Worcester Uni.

Update: Thursday, 1pm – cases in Liverpool, Sheffield and Aberdeen

There are now a total of 108 cases of coronavirus at Liverpool Uni, 82 at Aberdeen, and 49 at Strathclyde.

There were 65 new cases of coronavirus in Sheffield yesterday. The day before they announced there had been 32 new cases.

50 are isolating in uni accommodation at the Royal College of Music in London.

Yesterday it was reported there were 32 cases at Swansea – this has now been linked to a single person who went to a house party.

There are also new cases at Bournemouth, Hull, and Uni of the Highlands and Islands.

Update: Wednesday 30th – over 60 unis have now reported positive cases of coronavirus

At Man Met, 1,700 students in halls are in a lockdown, after over 120 of them tested positive for coronavirus. Students told The Tab they feel “like hamsters in a cage“, and like it’s “a herd immunity experiment”.

Over the weekend at the Man Met halls, there were reports of increased security patrols, parents driving for hours to drop off food, lawyers getting involved. Students put post-it note signs on their windows, saying “HMP MMU” and “Let us out!”, which the university promptly banned (they later apologised and said students have the right “to express themselves”).

40 staff and students at Sheffield Hallam have positive coronavirus tests. At Sheffield Uni, there are 36 students with “active confirmed Covid”, and three members of staff.

There are also cases at Leeds Beckett, and students in halls are isolating. At least 36 are isolating in Nottingham halls, after a number of students tested positive.

There are five cases at Coventry. Yesterday, the uni has said they will be taking “appropriate action” against Cov students after 200 gathered to party in a halls common room, breaking a ping pong table in the process. Cov Uni have now threatened expulsion and confirmed they are working with police to review CCTV footage and to find out whether the party was planned.

There are 96 cases among students living in Dundee halls.

Elsewhere in Scotland, there are 55 positive student and stuff cases at Edinburgh, and students in a halls are isolating after an outbreak there.

At St Andrews, there are 25 confirmed cases of coronavirus among staff and students. Their Principal has said students are not liable to pay course fees up to 10 weeks, instead of the usual four, to “make their mind up about St Andrews”. They are also getting rid of the usual requirement whereby students have to give 28 days’ notice if they want to cancel their accommodation contracts.

In Wales, 32 Swansea students have tested positive for coronavirus, 12 at Aberystwyth, six at Bangor and three at Cardiff Met. There are also cases at Glyndwr University and University of South Wales.

100 students at Queen’s Belfast are isolating in halls, after 30 tested positive for coronavirus.

In addition to the cases reported last week, there are also cases of coronavirus at: Loughborough, York, Sussex, Southampton, UEA, Uni of Cumbria, Uni of Gloucestershire, Reading, Birmingham City, Aston, Sunderland, Uni of Essex, Royal Holloway, Brunel, York St John, Strathclyde, Bath Spa, Chester, Portsmouth, Northumbria, Salford, Staffordshire, Glasgow Caledonian.

Update: 5pm – new cases at Leeds, Exeter and St Andrews

It has been confirmed that there were nine new positive cases of coronavirus at St Andrews Uni today alone. Yesterday their Principal said there had been 12 cases on campus since the start of September.

There have been 58 cases of coronavirus in Devon in the past seven days – and Exeter Uni is responsible for over half of them.

At least five flats across two Leeds Uni halls are self-isolating. One isolating first year told The Leeds Tab “it’s spread like wildfire because they’ve been all going out meeting people”. Yesterday the uni confirmed there have been six cases of coronavirus at Leeds since the start of September.

Update: Friday, 11am – 120 cases at Edinburgh Napier, and more restrictions on Scottish students

Last night, the Principal of St Andrews Uni confirmed there have been 12 cases of coronavirus since the start of September.

There are reports of more positive cases of coronavirus at Hull, Edinburgh Uni, and 120 cases at Edinburgh Napier. The Guardian has confirmed the number of students isolating at Manchester Met is 32.

In other coronavirus news, last night Scottish students last night were advised not to go to pubs, parties or restaurants in an attempt to reduce Covid outbreaks at universities.

These new restrictions, banning students from meeting other households indoors, mean students must stay in the households they have formed at university, so it is illegal for them to go home to see their families. However, it has been revealed Scottish students can terminate their tenancy or student let contracts, due to coronavirus.

Update: 3pm – new cases at Leeds

There have been six cases of coronavirus at Leeds since the start of September, the university has confirmed. One student told The Leeds Tab she’s aware of several houses self isolating and around thirty students having tested positive for coronavirus.

Update: Thursday, 11am – 124 cases at Glasgow, 600 isolating

Last night it was reported Glasgow Uni has 124 confirmed cases of coronavirus, and 600 students are self-isolating, although Uni officials said there are “likely to be more”. This came after The Tab Glasgow reported three Glasgow University accommodations have had COVID-19 infections.

There are new reported cases at University of Kent, Canterbury, and Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh.

Confidential, unofficial and unconfirmed reports of coronavirus cases at UK universities have been made to UniCovid. These say there are positive cases of coronavirus at Newcastle Uni: 22 students and 8 members of staff.

UniCovid also reports positive cases among Birmingham Uni; and Queen Mary University, London.

Update: Wednesday, 5pm – 500 students in Dundee are isolating

500 students in Dundee are having to self-isolate in their halls, after a single student tested positive for coronavirus at Abertay Uni.

In Aberdeen, a number of students have tested positive for coronavirus – including some in a block of halls. The entirety of the block now has to isolate for 14 days.

Oxford Brookes emailed its students this morning, confirming there have been 30 new confirmed cases of Brookes students with coronavirus in the past seven days. Last week, police were called to mass gatherings at a Brookes halls.

Three flats at Glasgow Uni halls have students self-isolating due to coronavirus. Notices have been placed outside the doors of every isolating flat, warning people away from entering. One of the flats is in a block that has shared bathrooms, rather than en suites – which makes isolating difficult.

Students at Exeter Uni have also tested positive for coronavirus, with a “small number” of cases “over the past few days”. Apparently the students caught the virus elsewhere in the country, and brought it to Exeter with them.

First update: Tuesday 22nd – new cases of coronavirus have been reported at universities across the UK

There are four new positive cases of coronavirus at St Andrews University, and over 40 are now isolating, due to a halls party in Freshers’ Week. Over the weekend, St Andrews students were urged to go into “voluntary lockdown“, with their Principal saying it was “pre-emptive and proactive action”.

Liverpool University confirmed that 87 staff and students tested positive for coronavirus last week, even when Liverpool’s Freshers’ Week is yet to begin.

Students are isolating at Manchester Metropolitan University halls due to a coronavirus outbreak, following halls parties of over 100 people. Students in two blocks of flats were told to isolate after several tested positive.

At Edinburgh Napier University, 11 students tested positive for coronavirus, with the outbreak traced to a block of student halls.

There are also positive cases of coronavirus at De Montfort University, Leicester; University of the West of England, Bristol; Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen; Swansea; Stirling; Bath; and Warwick.

Many of these cases are linked to parties in halls and student houses

Earlier this month, a Nottingham student was fined £10,000 for breaking social distancing rules by hosting a house party of 50 people.

In Exeter, as many as 400 people turned up to a party outside a halls. This weekend, an official Exeter Uni event saw hundreds of freshers gather on campus to watch Mamma Mia, with sources saying it “wasn’t distanced at all”. Other films had been played earlier in the night, which apparently were less “overcrowded” so had been distanced.

Manchester Uni has warned its students in halls they could be facing a curfew, after “significant breaches of Covid regulations” and social distancing rules. Manchester students were also warned they could face disciplinary procedures for flouting the rules, which could result in removal from halls and their academic courses.

Oxford Brookes’ Vice Chancellor has similarly warned students, saying they could be suspended or expelled if they are caught breaking coronavirus regulations. This followed an incident where police were called to Brookes halls after mass gatherings.

In Glasgow, students were found hiding in cupboards in an attempt avoid fines when police turned up at their house party. 23 people were given a verbal warning, and the two hosts were fined.

Many UK university cities are in local lockdowns right now, including Manchester, Durham and Liverpool. In Newcastle, also in local lockdown, it has been announced there will be “high visibility” patrols carried out by the police in student areas, every night until Christmas – paid for by Newcastle and Northumbria universities.

Know about cases of coronavirus at your uni we’ve missed? Email [email protected] 

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