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England’s STD hotspots exposed: How have cases of gonorrhea and chlamydia risen by up to 500% in parts of Devon, Yorkshire and Tyne and Wear… so how bad is the situation in YOUR area?

Some authorities in England have seen a 500 percent rise in STD rates in the past year, analysis shows.

York saw the biggest increase in gonorrhea cases between 2021 and 2022.

Meanwhile, South Tyneside and Torbay took top spot for syphilis and chlamydia respectively.

MailOnline has packaged the full set of data into a fascinating interactive map showing the situation in every part of England.

It comes after health authorities in Europe warned yesterday of a similar spike in STDs.

Covid lockdown rules effectively put an end to casual sex, leading to a drop in STD transmission during the pandemic.

Experts suspect this was then followed by a boom in people having condomless sex with new or casual partners after the lockdown.

This is evident from data analyzed by the Local Government Association Lambeth in London is the pop capital of the country.

The borough, home to Brixton and parts of Clapham, recorded 1,220.5 cases of gonorrhea per 100,000 residents in 2022.

This equates to about one in 100 people testing positive for the bug.

The real figures are probably higher because not everyone caught by the STO gets tested. In addition, some people can also contract the disease more than once.

But York saw the biggest jump, with a 380 percent increase in one year.


Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) caused by the bacterium Neisseria gonorrhoeae or gonococci.

This bacteria is usually found in penile discharge or vaginal fluid.

It is passed on through unprotected vaginal, oral or anal sex, as well as through sharing vibrators or sex toys used without a condom.

The bacteria can infect the cervix, urethra, rectum, throat or eyes.

It can also spread from pregnant women to their unborn babies.

Because the bacteria cannot survive for long outside the body, gonorrhea is not spread by kissing, hugging, sharing towels, toilet seats, or swimming.

About one in ten men and half of women experience no symptoms.

However, these may include:

  • Thick green or yellow discharge from the genitals
  • Pain when urinating
  • Bleeding between periods in women

Treatment usually consists of a single antibiotic injection and tablet.

Gonorrhea can be prevented by using condoms during sex and not sharing sex toys.

Source: NHS choices

Only two of the 152 local authorities – Sandwell and Reading – saw rates fall year on year.

Gonorrhea is usually spread through contact with infected sexual fluids. The bacteria can infect the cervix, urethra, rectum, throat or eyes.

It is most commonly passed through unprotected vaginal, oral, or anal sex, as well as sharing sex toys that are used in the same way without a condom.

Symptoms of gonorrhea usually occur within two weeks of infection and include unusual discharge from the genitals and a burning sensation when urinating.

But experts warn that one in 10 men and half of women will experience no obvious symptoms, meaning they could be silent spreaders of the STD.

If left untreated, it can cause infertility and, although rare, life-threatening sepsis.

Syphilis rates have also skyrocketed, with the City of London recording the highest rate in the country (324.9 cases per 100,000 residents).

South Tyneside, south-east of the city of Newcastle upon Tyne, recorded the largest annual growth in cases.

The numbers shot up 510 percent to 12.1 cases per 100,000 people in 2022, compared to just 2 cases per 100,000 people the year before.

Syphilis usually causes small sores on or around the genitals and/or anus, and white warts in the same areas.

It usually takes three weeks after infection for symptoms of infection to appear.

If left untreated, it can cause extremely serious and life-threatening health problems, affecting the function of the heart, brain, nerves and other organs.

Around two-thirds of local areas in England saw a rise in syphilis rates in 2022.

The City of London was also the chlamydia capital of the country in 2022, with 1,531.7 cases per 100,000 inhabitants.

But Torbay, in the south-west, took the cake with the biggest year-on-year increase, with interest rates rising 131.5 percent.

Chlamydia is considered one of the most common STDs in Britain, partly because most people show no symptoms and therefore do not get tested.

Symptoms, if they occur, may include pain during urination. Women may also have abdominal pain and bleeding after sex or between periods.

In addition to pain during urination, men may also experience pain and swelling in the testicles as a symptom.

If left untreated, chlamydia can cause infertility in women and cause a painful inflammation of the tubes that carry sperm from the testicles, called epididymitis.

It can also cause a temporary form of arthritis in both sexes.

Only a dozen local authorities in England recorded a fall in chlamydia rates in 2022, but not all recorded rates.

STD figures are collected by the Government’s Office of Health Disparities and analyzed by the Local Government Association (LGA).

Earlier this year, LGA raised the alarm about the scale of the problem facing sexual health services in England.

Many sexual health services in England are funded through public health grants.

However, the LGA says these grants have been reduced in real terms by £880 million over almost a decade, putting their ability to support sexual health services at risk.

The best way to determine if you have an STD is to contact your GP or an NHS sexual health clinic for a free test.

Some local areas offer free STD screening kits sent by post, although access to these varies.

Most STDs are easily treated with a course of medications such as antibiotics, but the danger is that people may not experience symptoms that indicate they are infected, potentially spreading the disease further.