Message from the Chairman of Wyre Piddle Parish Council- John Paul

Dear All

The last few months have seen an intensive cross-organisational and whole community approach to the Covid-19 pandemic which has brought immediate and challenging circumstances for us all to overcome.

I wanted to write to you personally to thank you all for your hard work and dedication during this time, supporting Wyre Piddle residents many of whom have been increasingly vulnerable and in need of additional help throughout this difficult period. We are by no means at the end of this journey, but as restrictions start to ease nationally and life for many starts to return to a new sense of normality, my council colleagues and I wanted to use this time as an opportunity to seek your feedback and experiences over the last few months. As volunteers and a community, you have witnessed and supported first-hand some of the greatest challenges in our community. For many of our residents, the implications of Covid-19 will be long-lasting and it is my priority to ensure that we continue to work together for the foreseeable future to support all individuals and families in Wyre Piddle. We would like to capture your thoughts and views and these will start to form the basis of planning the immediate and long term future arrangements.

Please send your thoughts and views to myself at .

Once again, thank you for everything you have been doing and are continuing to do.

Myself and fellow Parish Councillors look forward to seeing and speaking with many of you throughout the summer and beyond as we start to think about how we emerge from this crisis and onto the road to recovery.

Many Thanks and Kind Regards

John Paul

Chairman

Wyre Piddle Parish Council

Worcestershire County Council Update- COVID 19- June 12th 2020

Key Messages

As stated previously, 97% of Primary Schools are open for Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 pupils. Up to 60% of eligible pupils attended last week but due to staffing and space constraints, some smaller schools have re-opened on a part time basis.

  • Plans are being finalised for the phased return of pupils in year 10 and 12 in secondary schools, sixth form and further education colleges across the county from Monday next week (15 June). Risk assessments have been taking place on a school by school basis to ensure pupils and staff will be returning to school safely.
  • Face-to-face birth registrations by appointment only resumed this week at four sites across Worcestershire – Worcester (County Hall), Bromsgrove, Redditch and Kidderminster, and by the end of Saturday, the offices will have registered 226 births which is a fantastic achievement.
  • The Regional Testing Facility at Worcester Warriors can process approx. 600 tests per day. Capacity is managed within the DHSC system, with availability being released to meet demand as required. Review of “pop-up” locations underway as businesses and sites start to re-open.
  • 10 of the 11 Household Recycling Centres in Worcestershire are now open. As expected, these are extremely busy and therefore additional traffic management measures have been put in place.
  • The level of infections in Care Homes in Worcestershire remains stable and in line with levels across the West Midlands. All staff and residents in Care Homes with positive cases of COVID-19 have been tested.
  • The Test and Trace service is live. A team of Environmental Health Officers and Public Health Practitioners will provide this locally in Worcestershire. The COVID-19 Outbreak Control Plan is being developed
  • Plans under way to facilitate the phased re-opening of Libraries next month. Risk assessments being undertaken to ensure social distancing rules can be observed.
  • Pressure continues to ease on the Acute Trust with the number of active cases and new admissions still falling. Only 29 new cases have been identified in the past 10 days.
  • No significant issues with PPE. Now responding to calls for PPE from Dental Surgeries in light of plans to re-open next week.
  • Plans to support businesses as we begin to enter the economic recovery phase are being developed jointly by the County Council, the District Councils and partners. Government grants continue to be distributed to ensure businesses benefit from the additional funds.

Key Service Areas

Adult Services

Increasing concerns re the financial viability of Care Homes linked to a reduction in admissions.

  • As with school capacity issues, adherence to social distancing guidance will impact on Day Care capacity provision.
  • Worcestershire County Council Care Home Support plan has been published and is available at:

www.worcestershire.gov.uk/downloads/download/1437/worcestershire_s_covid-19_care_home_support_plan

  • COVID-19 restrictions have enabled a review to commence on how service provision could be delivered differently in future.
  • In addition to Libraries, exploring opportunities to re-open Museums and Registration Services.

Children’s Services

  • Awaiting several guidance notes from the Department for Education on:
    • Home to School Transport
    • Summer Activity Clubs
    • Autumn Term commencement
  • There remains a level of parental anxiety surrounding the phased re-opening of schools, which accounts for the lower turnout than expected.
  • To ensure social distancing measures are in place, it is estimated that there will be a significant reduction in pupil capacity, although this will obviously vary by school.
  • Attendance at school is still to be voluntary and online learning will continue to be available pupils not in schools.
  • Home to School transport being provided to those entitled to subsidised transport. Whilst too early to say, it is likely that transport expenditure will increase

Community Services

  • The Here2Help Contact Centre has scaled its opening times to reflect the reduction in calls for assistance.
  • Frequently Asked Questions paper being developed relating to testing within the community.

Economy & Infrastructure

  • Highways surface dressing and maintenance returning to “Business as Usual”. Construction work on the county’s major infrastructure projects are restarting.
  • The vastly improved Kidderminster Rail Station opened 6/6/20
  • In accordance with recent guidance from Transport Minister Baroness Vere, contractors are required to comply with the Highway Sector’s recently issued Site Operating Procedures which require personnel with symptoms to stay at home and sets out clear hygiene and travel procedures for those attending site.

Workforce and Training

  • Working from home will be the norm for the foreseeable future. We remain committed to ensuring staff are supported and that any action we take is mindful of wider considerations such as future transmission risk, social distancing measures, school closures, childcare needs and transport/travel concerns.
  • Self-assessment of home workspaces is now under way and all requests for additional equipment will be delivered by 12 June.

Communications

  • Developing messages around Test and Trace
  • Working with the Worcestershire Association of Carers, celebrating National Carers Week.

Finance

  • £2.7m funding allocated to support Test and Trace.
  • The return to MHCLG on our expected spend / lost income due next week, with an increasing concern over Social Care and Home to School Transport.

COVID-19 STATISTICS

Official statistics and information are available on the link below:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-track-coronavirus-cases

Some key statistics being:

Number Testing Positive in Worcestershire 1423
Number Testing Positive in UK 292950

 

UK 8/6 
Number of Tests carried out on the day 193253
Daily Increase in Cases 1541
Cumulative Deaths 41481

 

WHERE CAN I GET FURTHER INFORMATION, HELP AND ADVICE?

Reminder that the Here2Help website www.worcestershire.gov.uk/here2help is the first point of contact if people want to offer assistance or gain support. The other option is the telephone contact number which is staffed 8am-6pm 6 days a week – 01905 768053.

Carers who support a family member or friend who require support should contact the Worcestershire Association of Carers on www.carersworcs.org.uk  or call the Helpline 0300 012 4272.

http://www.worcestershire.gov.uk/coronavirus

NHS Website for information on Coronavirus

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

Wychavon Parish News update – 12th June 2020

Covid-19 (Coronavirus) update: 12 June 2020

You can keep up to date with all our public messaging by following our social media accounts or checking the coronavirus update page on our website.

If you are aware of anyone who is vulnerable and in need, please make sure they fill in the form or call the number on the Worcestershire Here 2 Help website.

If have any concerns or need specific support related to the Covid-19 outbreak you can contact or ring 01386 565168.

Test and Trace service

The new NHS Test and Trace service launched across England on 28 May. This means that anyone who develops symptoms of coronavirus can quickly be tested to find out if they have the virus, and also includes targeted asymptomatic testing of NHS and social care staff and care home residents.

The service will help trace close recent contacts of anyone who tests positive for coronavirus and, if necessary, notifies them that they must self-isolate at home to help stop the spread of the virus.

Update on council services

  • Our Customer Contact Centres in Droitwich, Evesham and Pershore remain closed. You can still use our online services or contact us by phone.
  • The Exceptional Hardship Fund has been temporarily replaced with the Covid-19 (coronavirus) Council Tax Hardship Fund 2020-2. Visit the page for further information Exceptional Hardship Fund.
  • All children’s play areas are closed. Our parks remain open but you must follow social distancing rules.
  • Droitwich, Evesham and Pershore Leisure Centres are closed.
  • Public toilets – Broadway Activity Park and Pershore High Street (due to maintenance issues) are closed.
  • Libraries (run by Worcestershire County Council) are closed. You can still download free audio books.
  • Committee meetings are being held virtually.
  • Our bulky waste collections have re-started. Garden waste and waste and recycling collections are unaffected.
  • Our licensing functions have also been affected. Visit the Worcestershire Regulatory Services website for more information.
  • Car parking – all of Wychavon’s Pay and Display Car Parks are now free to use. NHS Staff and health care staff can also park for free in any on-street parking bay, for any length of time, while carrying out essential duties, as long as they are displaying evidence of employment. See our parking page for more information.

Household recycling centres

The HRCs in Droitwich and Hill and Moor are now open and operating in line with the social distancing requirements.

Residents are being encouraged to check the website for full details of the social distancing measures, opening times and other restrictions before they visit an HRC. These measures include a ‘one in, one out’ access policy, no staff assistance to remove items from vehicles so those visiting need to be able to remove their own waste, and additional services such as compost sales and charity reuse points will be closed until further notice.

Sites are expected to be very busy so residents may have to queue for a long time before they are able to access the site as only a limited number of cars will be allowed in at any one time. Worcestershire County Council has worked with colleagues in Highways and will have traffic management in place where possible and will monitor this to try and keep disruption to the network to a minimum.

Support for businesses

By the end of May we had paid 2,347 of business grants to Wychavon businesses totalling £27.4 million.

In addition we have been given £1.5million of discretionary grant funding to help businesses not eligible to receive either the cash grant for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses or the small business grant.

Guidance has been issued by the Government and the types of business that are expected to benefit from this new funding are:

  • Businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces. Examples could include units in industrial parks, science parks and incubators which do not have their own business rates assessment
  • Regular market traders with fixed building costs, such as rent, who do not have their own business rates assessment
  • Bed & Breakfasts which pay Council Tax instead of business rates
  • Charity properties in receipt of charitable business rates relief which would otherwise have been eligible for Small Business Rates Relief or Rural Rate Relief.

Businesses must also demonstrate they have been significantly affected by the Covid-19 outbreak. Visit our website for more details and how to apply. The deadline for applications is 5pm on 19 June 2020.

Our Covid-19 information business page contains lots of other information and advice for businesses including reopening businesses safely, making shops Covid-19 safe, links to government guidance for different types of businesses and other sources of financial support.

Crowdfund WYCHAVON launched

All community groups operating in Wychavon can apply for funding as part of our Spacehive crowdfunding platform. Crowdfund WYCHAVON has now been launched and the deadline for expressions of interest is 15 June.

Supporting our communities to respond to the coronavirus pandemic isn’t just about dealing with the immediate crisis. It also requires a long-term commitment to helping our residents and businesses recover from the impact of the virus. Helping our local economy and our communities to rebuild is important to our overall recovery plan for the district.

We want to get behind projects that have the support of the community and make a positive difference, we believe that Wychavon’s community groups are a key part of this. We have pre-selected some groups and organisations that we know are providing important services and support and would benefit from additional financial help to allow them to continue their vital work.

To support groups to reach their target, we will pledge up to 50% to each group, funding a maximum of £200. The remaining funds will need to be pledged by members of the community and other interested funders, over a six week period unless the total is reached sooner. Groups will receive support from both Wychavon District Council and Spacehive to generate interest and access other sources of funding.

Expressions of interest can be completed here. If successful, a group’s crowdfund will be live shortly afterwards and will run until 31 July.

If you have any questions, please email

Changes to electoral canvass

The Government has extended the date revised electoral registers need to be published by in response to coronavirus.

The annual electoral canvass starts in July and will pose some difficulties this year due to social distancing rules, availability of volunteers and concerns about door-knocking. As a result, the Government has amended the final date for the publication of this year’s revised registers from 1 December 2020 to February 2021. This will give councils more time to complete their canvassing and maintain the accuracy of their registers.

And finally …..

Don’t forget to check our Support for community groups and charities page for the latest sources of funding support available to community groups and charities affected by the Covid-19 outbreak.  We are adding new sources of funding regularly.

Wyre Piddle Parish Council stages its first socially distanced meeting via Zoom

Last night, (28th May), Wyre Piddle Parish Council staged its first socially distanced meeting since the Government lockdown in March.

Although getting used to this new technology it was a good meeting and a great deal of business was discussed and agreed.

Requirement for Annual General Meetings.

Although it is “May” and time for the Annual General Meetings, the government have lifted the duty of Parish Councils to hold an AGM of the Parish Council and the Annual General Meeting of the Parish during 2020 due to the COVID 19 pandemic.

The Annual General Meeting for Wyre Piddle Parish Council and Annual Meeting of Wyre Piddle Parish will now take place in May 2021 (date to be agreed).

The current Chair (Cllr. John Paul) and Vice Chair (Cllr. Misan McFarland) will remain in post until the AGM of 2021 as per the government guidance.

The date of the next Ordinary Parish Council Meeting is set at Thursday 23rd July 2020 at 7.30pm.

Wyre Piddle Parish Council Meeting – May 28th via ZOOM

Government Legislation has changed for Parish Councils which came into force on the 4th April 2020 to enable Parish Councils across England to carry out their meetings. The change of legislation was introduced as a measure to support Parish Council during the COVID 19 Pandemic.

Parish Councils are now permitted to hold their meetings remotely, online and Wyre Piddle Parish Council will host its first Formal Ordinary Parish Council meeting on Thursday 28th May 2020 at 7.30pm via ZOOM.

The meeting is accessible to the public in exactly the same way that every other Parish Council meeting was and each meeting is set up with meeting ID and password details.

Should you be interested in logging into the Parish Council meeting on the 28th May at 7.30pm please contact the Clerk by email on "> for login details. The meeting will be via ZOOM and therefore you will need to download the software on https://zoom.us/signin which is FREE. The meeting can be viewed via your PC or you can dial in via a UK phone number unique to ZOOM for meetings. The Clerk will supply all this information on request.

As per all Parish Council meetings the Public will be welcome to speak during “Public Question Time” and able to observe the remainder of the meeting.

 

Wychavon Email News Update – 15th May 2020

The Prime Minister announced some changes to the lockdown restrictions this week which came into force on Wednesday (13 May).

The Government has produced some FAQs on what you can and cannot do to help you understand the changes.

Although the infection rate is coming down, the virus has not gone away and we all still have a responsibility to keep each other safe.

To help control the virus you must still:

  • Stay at home as much as possible
  • Work from home if you can
  • Limit contact with other people
  • Keep your distance if you go out (keep 2 metres apart where possible)
  • Wash your hands regularly, for at least 20 seconds

Do not leave home if you or anyone in your household has symptoms. You can find out more about symptoms of coronavirus and what to do if you have them on the NHS website.

It is also important you look after your mental health.

Every Mind Matters has advice on looking after your mental wellbeing.

Spending time outdoors

You can now spend more time outdoors and enjoy a wider range of activities for any length of time, but you must still follow social distancing rules.

The rule changes include spending time outdoors with one member of another household, one-on-one, as long as you stay 2 metres apart at all times.

Some activities where social distancing is possible, such as tennis or golf, are now allowed as long as people stay 2 metres apart at all times.

You still cannot gather with more than one person from another household.

You also cannot:

  • Go on holiday
  • Visit and stay overnight at a holiday home or second home
  • Visit the homes of friends or family, unless it’s to help a vulnerable person for medical reasons or to take a child to another household with whom parental responsibilities are shared

You can now drive to a destination for recreation, irrespective of distance, in England. The rules are not the same in Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland.

If you get to a destination and you find it is so crowded that you cannot stay 2 metres apart from people, then please go somewhere else where you can.

Seek help if you are in medical need

The NHS is still open for businesses for anyone who does not have a coronavirus related medical need. The way you access this help may be different, but help is still available.

Read more advice about getting medical help at home. In a genuine life-threatening emergency you should still call 999.

Council services

Contact Centres – these remain closed for face-to-face queries but we are still available on the phone or by email. We are reviewing this in light of the Government’s announcement this week and are making preparations to reopen when the time is right.

Public toilets – these remain closed but we are making preparations to reopen them with social distancing rules in place. We hope to make an announcement next week

Play areas – these remain closed but our parks are open

Household Recycling Centres – these are run by Worcestershire County Council. Some opened this week but with restrictions. Find out more about visiting a Household Recycling Centre during the coronavirus outbreak.

The full list of services affected is available at www.wychavon.gov.uk/coronavirus

Any changes will be published on that page.

Face coverings

The Government has also given some advice that people should use face coverings (not medical masks but a scarf or homemade fabric covering) when on public transport or in some shops or other enclosed public spaces.

Read the advice on how to make a fabric face covering at home.

Read the guidance on when and who should wear a face covering.

Recycling issues

We are starting to see used tissues and disposable gloves, masks etc appear in the recycling we are collecting from households.

Please do not put these items in with your recycling. It creates an infection risk for the workers at the sorting facility. It may also mean we are unable to recycle whole loads of recycling.

You can help by getting your recycling right. Read the list of items you can and cannot put into your household recycling.

If you or someone in your household has symptoms of coronavirus then you should put used tissues and disposable cleaning cloths in rubbish bags. Then put the bag into a second bag and tie it securely. Store it for three days before putting it in your black bin.

If on a sack collection, follow the same process and store bags separately from bags of standard household waste for three days. They can then be put out for collection together on your usual collection day.

You can dispose of other household waste as normal.

Covid-19 Memory Bank Project

The Covid-19 outbreak is undoubtedly a significant moment in human history. We are keen to capture information about what happened locally to inform future generations. That is why we have launched the Covid-19 Memory Bank.

You are encouraged to send in messages of goodwill you have received from neighbours, rainbow pictures you have drawn in support of key workers, messages of thanks you have left for key workers or received, diary entries you may have made during lockdown, video blogs, photographs, video footage, poems, songs or artwork.

The subject can be anything from how you felt during this time to the way the community pulled together, the weekly clap for our carers event, response of key workers on the frontline and the challenges or joys of home schooling.

If you have lost a loved one to this virus, you are also invited to submit a photograph and/or tribute to them.

The information received will be used in a future art project or exhibition and then handed over to the archive at The Hive or locally for preservation.

You can find out more about the project and upload any contributions you may have at www.wychavon.gov.uk/memorybank

Opening of schools and colleges

You may have seen media reports of schools being asked to reopen for some pupils from 1 June. Those of you with school age children will no doubt have many questions. The Government has published an FAQs list. Read more about the Government plan for reopening schools.

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme

If you are self-employed then the Government’s Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) is now open for applications. Everyone eligible will receive a grant by 25 May or within six days of a completed claim. Grants are worth 80% of average monthly trading profits.

Read more information on the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme

Financial support for you

If you are struggling financially then we would advise you to make a claim for Universal Credit, Council Tax Support and other benefits you may be eligible for.

There is more information on the coronavirus employments and benefits page.

Help paying your Council Tax

If you are of working age and already receiving Council Tax Support you will get a one off reduction of up to £150. This will be applied automatically to your bill.

You can apply online for Council Tax Support if you are struggling to pay your bill.

More information is available on our Benefits and Council Tax page.

Even if you are not eligible for Council Tax Support, you still may be able to defer your payments for a short period, or spread them over 12 months instead of ten.

Please contact our team by emailing or call 03004 560560 to discuss your circumstances and they will do their best to help you.

Support for businesses

We have paid out support payments totaling more than £25.7million to more than 2,200 businesses.  If you are a business and have yet to apply, find out if you are eiigible and more information on our Business Rates Reliefs page.

The Government’s furlough scheme is now open meaning businesses can apply for help to pay up to 80% of the wages of staff.

www.businesssupport.gov.uk has details of all the support available to businesses.

Download free audio and e-books

Worcestershire County Council’s libraries still aren’t allowed to open but you can download e-books and audio books for free.

Funding for charities, arts and community groups

There is a range of funding support available to community groups and charities who are affected by the COVID-19 outbreak themselves or who are working to support vulnerable people impacted by COVID-19.  This includes funding support for arts, heritage and sports projects and grants for organisations supporting vulnerable people.

Visit our Support for community groups and charities page for more information. We update this page regularly so please keep checking back if there is nothing available for your charity or group currently.

Help for those in need

If you are in need of support and do not already have help from friends, family, the voluntary sector or adult social care then please fill in the form on the Worcestershire Here 2 Help website.

Beware fake or unlicensed medicines

There are an increasing number of products being advertised to the general public claiming to either help prevent or treat Covid-19. These include ‘divine cleansing oils’ and ‘antiviral misting sprays’.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA)  has issued a warning not to buy these products. Read the announcement from the MHRA on fake or unlicensed coronavirus medicines.

Reporting common issues with Wychavon District Council that affect you.

Click on the links below to report common issues that affect you.

Environment and animals.

Planning Enforcement.

Update on Pershore Infrastructure Improvement Scheme – Pinvin Junction

11th May 2020

Pershore Infrastructure Improvement Scheme – Pinvin Junction

We are writing to update you about the works on the Pinvin Junction element of the Pershore Infrastructure Improvement Scheme.

As we’re sure you’re aware, work is currently suspended on site due to the impact of Covid-19. Further to recent guidance from Transport Minister, Baroness Vere, regarding the resumption of Highway maintenance and improvement schemes, work will resume in the next few weeks. All work will be carried out following the Highway Sector’s Site Operating Procedures which provide guidance on travel to work, welfare facilities, hygiene practices and other site management practices designed to control the spread of the virus.

At this time, we wanted to make you aware of a road closure in the area at the end of this month, needed for major utility diversions. Openreach and Seven Trent Water require the closure of Terrace Road between the Junction of the A4104/A44 for 100m of Terrace Road towards the Railway Station, from Saturday 23rd until Sunday 31st May. As with the other closures, diversions will be in place during this closure and advanced-notice signage will be deployed on site. Residents living in Terrace Road will be able to access the road and park as usual during the closure period. Pedestrian routes will also be maintained keeping pedestrians at a safe distance from the workforce.

Please note that the work programme may be subject to change and residents may be asked to park on the other side of the road during some of the days. You can find out more about the scheme and keep up to date with progress by visiting the County Council website at www.worcestershire.gov.uk/pershore

Should you have any further queries about the scheme, please contact .

If you have any concerns about the work, please contact
Alun Griffiths Contractors (Ltd) on 03301 071484

Regards

The Major Projects Team

Worcestershire County Council

Worcestershire County Council has a website where you can report WCC issues that affect You.

Worcestershire County Council has a website where you can report WCC issues that affect You.

CLICK HERE for Worcestershire County Council “Report It”

Worcestershire County Council covers: Bridges and Structures; Drainage and Flooding; Grit Bins, Gritting; Improvements to walking Cycling, Bus or Disabled Access; Mud, Oil or Spillage; Other Road or Pavement Issues; Overgrown Shrubbery; Potholes; Public Rights of Way; Street Lights; Traffic Lights or to track a previously reported Highways Issue.

Please note: Do not use this online service if your report relates to an immediate public safety issue, please contact the police

Worcestershire County Council announces the re-opening of a number of Household Recycling Centres from 11th May

Please find below an update on the reopening of a number of our Household Recycling Centres (HRC’s) from Monday 11 May.

We will be communicating the following information to the public at 12pm today and I would like to ask that you do not communicate this information until then.

We will be opening 7 of the 11 sites and these are:

*   Bromsgrove (Quantry Lane)

*   Malvern (Newlands)

*   Pershore (Hill & Moor)

*   Redditch (Crossgates)

*   Stourport (Bonemill)

*   Tenbury

*   Worcester (Bilford Road

This recognises the additional resourcing required to operate the sites in line with the new requirements, e.g. social distancing.

It is important to note that journeys to HRCs must only be undertaken if your waste or recycling cannot be stored at home safely or disposed of safely by other means.

I need your help to try and get the message to residents that this means they should only be visiting if the waste cannot be stored at their home without causing risk of injury, health or harm. There is no other reason the journey will be considered a legitimate purpose for travel.  If the waste can be temporarily stored, recycled or disposed of in a way that does not pose a risk to safety or human health, then this should be done.

We are encouraging residents to check the website for full details of the social distancing measures, opening times and other restrictions before they visit the HRC. These measures include a ‘one in, one out’ access policy, no staff assistance to remove items from vehicles so those visiting need to be able to remove their own waste, and additional services such as compost sales and charity reuse points will be closed until further notice.

We expect the sites to be very busy so residents may have to queue for a long time before they are able to access the site as only a limited number of cars will be allowed at any one time . We will have traffic management in place where possible and will monitor this to try and keep disruption to the network to a minimum.