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Revealed: Google data shows where people in Suffolk have been post-lockdown

PUBLISHED: 12:16 30 August 2020 | UPDATED: 12:28 30 August 2020

Amember of the public wearing a face mask walks past Coes in Ipswich during Lockdown Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Amember of the public wearing a face mask walks past Coes in Ipswich during Lockdown Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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More Suffolk shoppers ventured out to retail and recreation venues than the national average since the lifting of lockdown restrictions in England, new Google data has revealed.

The company’s latest mobility report, published on Friday, covers the month since face coverings were made mandatory in shops from July 24.

Time spent in shops and pubs has slowly increased in Suffolk throughout August and residents are paying more frequent visits to town centre areas than the national average.

People are continuing to spend more time in local parks than they did before the national lockdown was imposed in March.

MORE: Latest coronavirus infection rates show slight rise in cases – check the numbers in your area

A sign reminding people to socially distance and wear a mask  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNA sign reminding people to socially distance and wear a mask Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Meanwhile, Suffolk employees are continuing to spend less time in their workplaces, going in two to three times a week compared with the usual five-day routine. This same trend is reflected nationally.

Google has been using location data gathered from people’s phones to help public health bosses determine how closely the country has been sticking to the lockdown rules.

The company’s latest report includes data up to August 25 and shows the changes in time spent at various locations in Suffolk – compared to the rest of the UK – with an upwards trend in movement since the reopening of non-essential shops, bars, pubs and restaurants at the beginning of July.

In Suffolk, the data shows that visits to grocery stores and pharmacies have broadly stayed in line with the national average.

Amember of the public walks through Ipswich with a mask and gloves Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNAmember of the public walks through Ipswich with a mask and gloves Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

MORE: More shoppers return to Ipswich - but footfall still down on pre-lockdown levels

Meanwhile, the amount of time Suffolk residents have spent in parks, shops, pubs and bars since lockdown restrictions eased is higher than the UK average.

UK visits to transport hubs have fallen at a more significant rate than they have in Suffolk, which could be partly down to the county not having any major cities or transit hubs, with the biggest and most connected station being located in Ipswich.

Time spent in workplaces in Suffolk is also broadly in line with the national average, but the most recent data fluctuates significantly, reflecting a move towards more frequent home working.

People are continuing to spend more time at home than they did before the lockdown.

Data as recent as August 25 suggests Suffolk residents are spending 11% more time in residential areas than they did in February.

That has fallen, however, from 31% more time spent at home in April, at the height of lockdown.

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