Wiltshire Council COVID -19 Update 16th October

 

 


New three-tier local COVID-19 restrictions explained


A three-tier system of local restrictions to curb the transmission of COVID-19 has been introduced in England. The new system will see different parts of the country placed under varying restrictions depending on their rates of infection. The restrictions in each tier are:

Medium

•Follow the rule of six if meeting indoors or outdoors
•Pubs and restaurants to shut at 10pm


High

•No household mixing indoors
•Rule of six will apply outdoors
•Pubs and restaurants to shut at 10pm


Very High

•No household mixing indoors or outdoors in hospitality venues or private gardens
•Rule of six applies in outdoor public spaces like parks
•Pubs and bars not serving meals will be closed
•Guidance against travelling in and out of the area
•Further measures which may be agreed locally


What tier is Wiltshire in?


Wiltshire is currently in the medium (lowest) tier of the COVID-19 alert levels. This means current restrictions will stay the same. Please help to keep the rate of transmission low by continuing to:

•Follow the Hands, Face, Space guidance: wash your hands often and thoroughly, wear a face mask in enclosed spaces and keep two metres apart or one metre+ with a face covering or other protection
•Follow the rule of six if meeting indoors or outdoors


Self isolate if:

•you develop symptoms
•you have tested positive for COVID-19
•someone in your support bubble has symptoms or tested positive
•you're told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace or the NHS COVID-19 app. It is now a legal requirement to do so
you arrive in the UK from a country with a high COVID-19 risk


We must all play our part

Message from Philip Whitehead, Leader of Wiltshire Council

“This is clearly still a difficult time for the country and we hope this new system will help slow the spread of COVID-19. Wiltshire’s alert level is ‘medium’ which means the current restrictions remain in place and we need people to continue to be vigilant. Our top priority remains the same – to continue to support Wiltshire residents and businesses through this pandemic so that the county emerges as strong as possible when we reach the other side. We have focussed our resources and way of working to give us the best possible opportunity of achieving this.

“Although local COVID-19 cases are rising, the spread of the virus locally is still comparatively low in Wiltshire, but we all must play our part and not be complacent as we’ve seen in other areas how quickly the situation can change for the worse. That means keeping washing hands, wearing face coverings where required and socially distancing. People must also self-isolate when told to so, and this is now a legal requirement. If we keep doing this and supporting one another, then we stand the best possible chance of keeping each other safe.”

 


Download the NHS COVID-19 app


You can download the COVID-19 app now which supports contact tracing. Use the app to scan QR codes in shops and restaurants so the app can let you know if you come into direct contact with someone who later tests positive. All your data is held locally on your phone.

You can download the COVID-19 app via the App Store or Google Play as long as your phone software is recent enough to support it - find out by visiting the apps download provider for your device.

Find out more and watch a short video from our Director of Public Health, Kate Blackburn here.

 

Wiltshire Council COVID-19 Update 14th October

 

Please find below the latest Wiltshire Council update regarding COVID-19

 

Schools update

Precautionary COVID-19 measures taken at schools in Wiltshire

Following advice from public health professionals, 12 state and 2 independent schools in Wiltshire are currently taking precautionary COVID-19 measures due to positive cases being confirmed in their settings.  This information is correct as at 12pm on 9 October.

Whilst the number of positive cases are very low in each setting, a total of 635 pupils are currently being asked to self-isolate to ensure any risk of transmission is kept as low as possible. The self-isolation of the pupils is very precautionary to minimise any risk to others and to reduce onward transmission of the virus.

The schools are working closely with the Public Health team at Wiltshire Council to ensure high standards of hygiene and social distancing are maintained and all the necessary measures are in place.

 All school pupils currently self-isolating are continuing their learning at home during this time.

 

COVID-19 Business update

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme

Claims for the second taxable grant, worth 70% of a self-employed person’s average monthly trading profits, must be submitted on or before 19 October 2020. Eligible applicants will receive a single instalment covering 3 months’ worth of profits, capped at £6,570 in total. People can claim for the second grant even if they did not make a claim for the first grant.

 To claim the second taxable grant:Click here

The grant is being extended from 1 November 2020 for a period of six months. Two grants will be paid in lump sum instalments, each covering a three-month period. The first will cover the period from the start of November until the end of January and the second will start in February until the end of April 2021. Full details on how to claim will be available soon.

For information on the extension of the scheme: Click here

 

Job Retention Bonus

The Job Retention Bonus is a scheme which provides employers with a £1,000 one-off taxable payment for each eligible employee that was furloughed and kept continuously employed until 31 January 2021.

Employers can now check whether they are eligible to claim the Job Retention Bonus and what they need to do to claim it. Claims for the bonus can be made between 15 February and 31 March 2021. Further information can be found here.

 

Government Skills Toolkit

The Skills Toolkit is an online learning platform launched by the government. It gives people access to free, high-quality digital, numeracy and employability courses, to help build their skills, progress in work and boost their job prospects.

All courses on The Skills Toolkit are easy to access, meaning people can learn on their own terms, at a time and place that suits them. There’s something for everyone, no matter what their experience or background.

The Government has recently added over 60 new courses to the Skills Tool Kit including the addition of work-readiness courses - from computer essentials and practical maths to digital marketing, coding, leadership and project management.  This initiative is supported by some of the country’s leading educational experts and employers including The Open University, Google, Amazon and Microsoft.

Further information can be found here: https://theskillstoolkit.campaign.gov.uk/.

 

COVID-19 Test and Trace support payment scheme

 For those required to self-isolate, a £500 payment is available if they are working and on a low income and will lose money because they cannot work from home.

 To receive this payment, they must:

  • have been asked to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace after Monday, 28 September 2020 and have a unique Test and Trace number provided by the NHS
  • be employed or self-employed
  • have lost income by being unable to work from home while self-isolating

and be receiving at least one of the following benefits:

  • Universal Credit
  • Pension Credit
  • Housing Benefit
  • Income Support
  • income-based Jobseeker's Allowance
  • income-based Employment Support Allowance
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  • Working Tax Credit
     

The council is in the process of finalising a system to allow people to claim for this payment as quickly and easily as possible, this will be live next week. People who are eligible for this payment will be able to make a backdated claim to 28 September 2020. 

More information on how to apply locally will be available on the website’s council tax and benefits pages next week. In the meantime, more information can also be found on the government website.

 

Leisure services update

Safety for staff and customers has been at the forefront at all the centres, with COVID-19 measures in place and being respected by those who attend. Feedback from customers has been generally positive and the new measures have made people feel safe as they look to improve their fitness after a challenging 2020 so far. The council is constantly reviewing the safety measures and will make any changes as required.

For up to date information on what’s available, what’s changed and how to access activities people should visit www.wiltshire.gov.uk/leisure-covid19.

 

New Wiltshire Health Improvement Hub

The council is launching a new Wiltshire Health Improvement Hub which will assist people who want to improve their health and mental wellbeing. 

The Health Improvement Hub will be a single point of access for referrals to the Health Improvement Coaches, Healthy Me (child and family weight management service), and the council’s new group adult weight management programme, Healthy Us, due to launch January 2021.

The Wiltshire Health Improvement Hub will utilise Health Improvement Coaches who can support people to make practical changes to improve their health and mental wellbeing through one-to-one support. This service will be available to over 18s and is free, with the Health Improvement Coaches providing six one-hour sessions, which are carried out by telephone or virtually. When safe to do so they will be offered as  face-to-face sessions.

The new service builds on the success of the current Health Trainer Service which has been running since 2014, and has supported 5,000 people in Wiltshire to lose weight and eat a healthy diet, increase physical activity, reduce alcohol intake, stop smoking and improve emotional wellbeing.

More information about the Wiltshire Health Improvement Hub can be found on our website at https://www.wiltshire.gov.uk/public-health-trainers. Alternatively people can email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 0300 003 4566 - option 1.

 

World Mental Health Day 2020

As well as the launch of the Wiltshire Health Improvement Hub highlighted above, the council is supporting Public Health England and the NHS’ Every Mind Matters programme which has been endorsed by the Royal College of General Practitioners (RGCP). Every Mind Matters offers a range of resources that help spot the signs of common mental health concerns, offers practical self-care tips and guidance and, importantly, explains when to seek further support. It also has a free NHS-approved online tool the Every Mind Matters Your Mind Plan.

As half term approaches, Every Mind Matters also has a range of information to support children and young people and their parents/carers to talk about mental health and the current situation and how to navigate the COVID-19 situation.

People can find ideas and simple accessible resources, on the Wiltshire Council website at http://www.wiltshire.gov.uk/public-health-mental-health.

The page includes five evidence-based steps people can take to improve their mental wellbeing:

  • Keep connected. We all benefit from good relationships – do you know someone who would like a chat over the phone?
  • Be active, look after your physical health - people can explore a variety of ways to exercise and try new things by looking at the active communities page on our Active Communities page on our website https://www.wiltshire.gov.uk/leisure-active-communities
  • Take notice and appreciate what you have. Take time to look around you, what do you hear and see? Take a moment to relax and enjoy the autumnal colours.
  • Keep learning. Make time for hobbies and interests
  • Get involved in your community. Give to others. A smile goes a long way!

There are also a number of additional resources listed on the CCG website, that can help a person in need.

 GPs can also signpost people to local support services, while also sharing their own insight, knowledge and experience

 

 

Wiltshire Council COVID-19 Update 7th October

 

Please find below the latest update from Wiltshire Council regarding COVID-19 and other matters. 

The government’s COVID-19 data is updated daily and specific information on Wiltshire is available here.

Whilst, the COVID-19 infection rate in Wiltshire and the South West remains low compared to other regions, the council is working hard with its partners to encourage residents and businesses to continue their efforts to follow government guidance on prevention (https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus),  and sign up to the new NHS App which is the best and fastest way to check if they are at risk from coronavirus.   The app is a vital tool to help the NHS understand where and how quickly the virus is spreading, so it can respond quickly and effectively.

The NHS app is available to download for free in England and Wales, and has a number of tools to protect individuals, including contact tracing, local area alerts and venue check-in.

 For further information about the app and how to download it please click here: https://covid19.nhs.uk. 

 

COVID-19 - what has changed?

 The government recently announced further national measures to address rising cases of coronavirus, which are likely to remain in place until March 2021. To read the announcement in full:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/coronavirus-covid-19-what-has-changed.

 

Schools update

 Precautionary COVID-19 measures taken at four educational settings in Wiltshire

 Following advice from public health professionals, Larkrise School in Trowbridge, Royal Wootton Bassett Academy, Dilton Marsh C of E Primary School near Westbury, and Wiltshire College & University Centre’s Trowbridge Campus are taking precautionary COVID-19 measures due to an individual positive case confirmed at each of their settings. These measures ensure the risk of any transmission within the settings is kept as low as possible.

At Royal Wootton Bassett Academy, one pupil in Year 10 has tested positive for COVID-19, and while all precautionary and proper bubble measures have been followed, the school has agreed to take additional precautions with advice from public health professionals and ask all Year 10, a total of 277 pupils, to self-isolate until 30 September.  

At Dilton Marsh Primary School, the Headteacher has tested positive for COVID-19. Close contacts have been identified and by taking precautionary measures, 24 children from different year groups are self-isolating until 2 October. Eight members of staff are also self-isolating.  The school had temporarily closed to all pupils but following conversations with Wiltshire Council and Public Health England, all pupils who have not been identified as close contacts of the Headteacher will now start to return from 25 September on a staggered basis.

At Larkrise School in Trowbridge one pupil has tested positive for COVID-19. In following the correct precautionary measures, 10 pupils and 10 members of staff are self-isolating until 5 October.

At Wiltshire College & University Centre’s Trowbridge campus, one student has tested positive for COVID-19. In following the correct precautionary measures, the College has asked 24 students to self-isolate until 5 October.

We understand these precautionary measures can be disruptive for the schools, colleges, pupils, students and their families, but it’s vital we keep the virus under control in Wiltshire, and we thank everyone involved for their support with this.

The government’s letter to parents and guardians on booking coronavirus tests for their children is available. Please click here

Government's Winter Economy Plan

This plan outlines a package of targeted measures to support businesses and jobs through the winter.
 
The measures include:

  • support for businesses to bring employees back to work and save jobs with a new Job Support Scheme which will be introduced from 1 November 2020. Employees will need to work a minimum of 33% of their usual hours and for the hours not worked, the employer and the government will each pay one third of the employee’s usual pay
  •  extending the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme to April 2021 
  • help for the hospitality and tourism sectors through a continuation of the reduction in VAT (5%) to end of March 2021 
  • support for businesses’ finances and cashflow through an extension to the application period to 30 November 2020 for four government-backed loans schemes – Bounce Back Loan Schemes, Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme and the Future Fund 
  • changes to the terms of repayment for Bounce Back Loans and Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans so businesses can repay their loan over a period of up to ten years 
  • new payment scheme to ease the burden of paying deferred VAT by giving businesses the option to spread their payments in 11 equal instalments over the 2021-2022 financial year 
  • more time to pay Self-Assessment tax liabilities


 To read the Winter Economy Plan in full: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/winter-economy-plan/winter-economy-plan

 

Flu vaccinations

A record 30 million people are being offered the free flu vaccination this year.

The flu vaccine is given to people who:

  • are 65 and over (including those who'll be 65 by 31 March 2021)
  • have certain health conditions
  • are pregnant
  • are in a long-stay residential care
  • receive a carer's allowance, or are the main carer for an older or disabled person who may be at risk if you get sick
  • live with someone who's at high risk from coronavirus (on the NHS shielded patient list)
  • frontline health or social care workers

It’s more important than ever for people to get their vaccination, to help protect the nation from the double threat of flu and COVID-19 this winter.  Please encourage eligible members of your community to get their vaccine.

Further information is available here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/vaccinations/flu-influenza-vaccine/. 

 

 

 

Wiltshire Council COVID-19 Update 2nd October

NHS COVID-19 App

Over 14 million people have downloaded the new NHS COVID-19 app since it went live last week.

The app is used alongside traditional contact tracing, to notify you if you've come into contact with someone who later tests positive for coronavirus.

It helps the NHS understand where and how quickly the virus is spreading, so it can respond quickly and effectively. The app helps the NHS track the virus, not you individually.

It uses your smartphone’s existing “Exposure Logging” feature to work out if you have spent time near other app users who have tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19).

You can download it via the App Store or Google Play.

Watch a short video on how the process works

 

Financial assistance for people who have to self-isolate

We all have to work together and follow the guidance as we look to keep COVID-19 under control in Wiltshire.

We know that when people are told to self-isolate this can increase financial pressures at an already difficult time.

If you are required to self-isolate, a £500 payment is available if you are working and on a low income or will lose money because you cannot work from home.

To receive this payment, you must: •have been asked to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace after Monday, 28 September 2020 and have a unique Test and Trace number provided by the NHS
•be employed or self-employed
•have lost income by being unable to work from home while self-isolating
And be receiving at least one of the following benefits: •Universal Credit
•Pension Credit
•Housing Benefit
•Income Support
•income-based Jobseeker's Allowance
•income-based Employment Support Allowance
•Working Tax Credit
The council is in the process of developing a system to allow you to claim for this payment as quickly and easily as possible.

The system will be live soon and we will update you when it is.

People who are eligible for this payment will be able to make a backdated claim to 28 September 2020.

 

Changes to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

From 1 October, the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has changed and employers now need to fund 20% of furloughed employees’ usual wages for the hours they do not work, as well as continuing to pay their National Insurance (NI) and pension contributions.

This means the government will only pay 60% of wages, up to a cap of £1,875, for the hours the employee is on furlough.

This scheme comes to an end on 31 October 2020.

To find out more click here

 

Are you eligible for a free flu vaccination?

A record 30 million people are being offered the flu vaccination this year. It’s more important than ever for eligible people to get their vaccination, to help protect the nation from the double threat of flu and COVID-19 this winter.

If you’re in an eligible group please make sure you get vaccinated. You can ask your pharmacist or GP to find out if you are eligible.

More information on this here

 

Stoptober
Stopping smoking is one of the best things you'll ever do for your health.

When you stop, you give your lungs the chance to repair and you'll be able to breathe easier. There are lots of other benefits too - and they start almost immediately.

It's never too late to quit, so join in this Stoptober. Let's do this!

Quit smoking now

 

Green Homes Grant now available


Homeowners, including landlords, can now apply for a voucher worth up to £5,000 to hire tradespeople to install heat saving measures such as insulation in their homes, helping them save money and the planet.

Low income households can get 100% of the costs of work covered up to £10,000.

The Green Homes Grant scheme is available until the end of March 2021

Find out more about the scheme

 

LOCAL NEWS.

Local stories in and around the Malmesbury area to keep you up-to-date.

ATTRACTIONS
& ACCOMMODATION.

A wonderful place to visit with a wealth of attractions right on the doorstep.

MALMESBURY

Malmesbury is a beautiful town to visit in its own right and attractions include the jewel in our crown being Malmesbury Abbey, the fabulous Abbey House Gardens, and Malmesbury’s 15th century Market Cross.

For more than two and a half millennia successive generations have populated this hilltop, which forms the centre of the community we now call Malmesbury.
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CONTACT INFO

Town Hall, Cross Hayes, Malmesbury, Wiltshire SN16 9BZ

The Council Office is open for Council business from 9am until 5pm Monday to Thursday & Friday 9am to 4.30pm, except for Bank Holidays.

Please call us on 01666 822143, or visit our contact page here to contact a specific councillor or member of the council staff directly.