Reddit user shares ‘horrifying’ animated map of Covid-19 spreading across UK

A terrifying gif has illustrated how coronavirus swept across the UK over the last eight months.

The animation, posted to Reddit by user _c9s_, shows the number of positive Covid-19 cases confirmed across the UK (and the Isle of Man) from the beginning of February up until October 9.

The graphic is colour-coded from white to red to black to show the number of cases per million people.

Cases were taken for each lower-tier local authority area per day of the pandemic, adjusted for the population of the area.

The date is shown at the bottom of the gif and reveals how quickly the deadly disease surged across Britain, with some regions going from pale red to black in the space of a matter of days.

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London, the centre of the UK's epidemic earlier in the year, gets its own mini inset map to show the virus' fluctuating presence in the capital.

What begins as one or two isolated minor outbreaks (less than 20 cases per million people) in February rapidly turns into the entire map of the UK being blanketed in dark red and black by early April.

The gif also illustrates how the pandemic died down over summer, with many regions going back to white or pale red.

However as it passes through August and September cases begin to rise once more, and by October the map is the darkest it's ever been.

Daily recorded cases are currently at an all-time high, with far more positive tests than during the first wave of infections in spring.

However health authorities have said this is at least partially because of greater testing capabilities.

Nonetheless, the UK's long-awaited "second wave" is taking its toll on the country's morale and economy, with countless shops, restaurants and pubs closing their doors forever.

User _c9s_, who regularly posts informative animations about the UK's outbreaks, says the data was taken from official sources including Public Health England, Public Health Scotland, the Northern Ireland Department of Health, the Isle of Man Government and the Office for National Statistics.

Other Reddit users have responded to the gif with alarm and dismay.

"What's so sad here is that late June, that map looked pretty much right on track to let everything loose again a few weeks after…. but then people had to do their travelling and partying and then September goes nuts," one commented.

"Horrifying to see everything turn black in the end," another said.

"The ending was bad, but it's the speed of the spread that I find interesting," one user observed.

"It just accelerates so fast."

The UK has recorded 13,864 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in the past day.

In total there have been 575,679 infections since the beginning of the pandemic and 42,679 deaths.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to announce a sweeping new set of social distancing measures for the country on Monday, including a "three-tier system".

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