Dundee residents have been told prepare for an increase in the city’s student population as the covid-19 outbreak in university halls continues to grow.
The number of students who have tested positive in Parker House has grown to 49 while there are three confirmed positive cases at nearby Meadowside Halls.
Around 500 students, from Abertay and Dundee Universities, are still isolating in Parker House while testing continues in Meadowside Halls.
The Captain’s Cabin pub remains closed on a voluntary basis as investigators pursue “a number of cases” linked to the popular bar, which is located close to Abertay University.
Dundee University’s student association (DUSA) has meanwhile hit out at the “negativity surrounding halls these past 48 hours” as the organisation welcomes students during the opening weekend of the university’s traditional welcome and fresher’s week.
Dr Daniel Chandler, chair of the Incident Management Team, said there have been no reports of positive cases experiencing serious illness or complications.
He said: “We are expecting an increase in the number of students moving to the local area this weekend ahead of starting their courses, and our university and college colleagues have put in place a number of measures to help protect the student population and to limit the spread of the virus.
“We understand that this is an anxious time and I would like to reassure for students and their loved ones that welfare support and advice is in place for anyone who requires support at this time.
“I would like to again thank residents of Parker House and Meadowside for their continued support and understanding, and to reaffirm how much of a contribution to the overall effort towards slowing and stopping the spread of Covid-19 they are making by following all the precautions.
A DUSA spokeswoman posted a welcome on social media to students arriving at university for the first time.
She said: “With all the negativity surrounding halls these past 48 hours we just wanted to take the time to wish the new students arriving at halls today the biggest welcome.
“We are intimately aware of how stressful this time has been for you and we want to help cultivate as much positivity about starting your university experience as possible.
“We know this was not the start to university life that you expected or deserved but we want to help make the most of it we can,” she added.