EIGHT more people have tested positive for coronavirus in Bolton.

Figures released by Public Health England yesterday afternoon confirmed the new cases.

A total of 2,091 residents of the borough have tested positive for covid-19 since the start of the pandemic, including 230 patients at the Royal Bolton Hospital who died after contracting the virus.

The new cases came as health officials announced new plans to strengthen test and trace powers in England.

Pilot schemes across the country had seen local authorities visit people at home when national contact tracers had been unable to reach them.

The latest move came after criticism that the national system was not tapping into local knowledge.

NHS Test and Trace, Public Health England and local authorities will be able to work together to ensure more people are reached, with local areas given “ring-fenced teams from the national service”.

If the dedicated national team cannot make contact with a person in a set amount of time, the local public health officials can use the data to follow up, making the system "more locally targeted".