The number of cases of Covid-19 in the NHS Highland area has surged by its highest amount yet in the past 24 hours following an outbreak at the Faslane naval base.

The Royal Navy has confirmed a number of personnel at its main base on Gareloch in Argyll and Bute have tested positive for Covid-19.

Scottish government daily statistics show there has been 98 cases in the NHS Highland region which is under Level 1 restrictions and includes Argyll and Bute.

The daily figures for the postcode area that takes in Faslane show there has been 96 cases in the past 24 hours. Over the past seven days there has been 156 cases, a rise of 239%.

NHS Highland said the outbreak was "contained at the Faslane site".

A Royal Navy spokeswoman said: "We can confirm that a number of personnel at HMNB Clyde have tested positive for Covid-19 and are under medical supervision.

"Personnel identified as having been in contact with those who have tested positive are self-isolating in line with established health guidelines.

"We do not comment on matters related to submarine operations."

Dr Tim Allison, NHS Highland’s Director of Public Health, said: "NHS Highland is aware of an increase in our case numbers over the last 24 hours.

"This is due to an outbreak of Covid-19 among Faslane military personnel who are now in isolation. The outbreak is contained at that site. 

“We understand that there are many interactions between this establishment and the local community.

"However, we would wish to emphasise that while there have been a small number of cases over recent months in people who work on the site and live locally, there are no cases in the wider community directly linked to this current outbreak.  

“We also recognise that, over the last few weeks, the Helensburgh and Lomond locality has had a higher rate of infection than the rest of Argyll and Bute and we have been monitoring this closely.”