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Boris Johnson tries to reassure North East on visit after ‘mutant’ Covid-19 strain found in region

The Prime Minister sought to reassure the North East in a visit to the region the day after a mutant strain of Covid-19 was uncovered in Teesside.

The South African variant, which has previously been discovered in London and the South, was diagnosed in Middlesbrough by random sequencing from Public Health England, the city’s council confirmed on Friday night.

(Image: Getty Images)

‘Surge testing’ is being offered to every adult living in the area where the case was found, although door-to-door testing, as offered in parts of London, Surrey and Kent, as not yet been rolled out.

On Saturday, Boris Johnson paid a visit to Billingham’s Fujifilm Diosynth site, set to produce 60million doses of a new coronavirus vaccine, before visiting a Newcastle diagnostics company which has developed a rapid Covid-19 test.

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