Shropshire

Play areas in Shropshire to remain closed while we make them safe

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 07/03/2020 - 17:21

As we slowly move out of lockdown, the Government recently announced the easing of further restrictions from Saturday 4 July 2020, which included allowing play areas to re-open where safe to do so.

After careful consideration of the practicalities around re-opening play areas in a safe way, Shropshire Council has decided that play areas will remain closed to protect residents, communities and staff.

Shropshire Council is responsible for the management of 52 play areas right across the county.  This makes it a difficult task to regularly clean high contact surfaces at play areas and follow Government guidance.

We are working hard with our Public Health services to develop measures that will help to minimise the risk to public safety and enable us to re-open play areas as soon as safely possible.

Lezley Picton, Shropshire Council Cabinet member for culture, leisure, waste and communications, said:

“We appreciate that this will be disappointing for many families and it’s not a decision that we have taken lightly.

“Our top priority throughout the coronavirus pandemic has been to protect people’s health and safety and to help slow the spread of the virus. When we are confident that we can safely re-open play areas, we will do so.

“Until then, we ask people bear with us and to respect the ongoing closure.”

While play areas will remain closed, Shropshire’s stunning countryside is open for you to visit.

Shropshire’s countryside has been a lifeline to people across the county during the lockdown. You can find sites to visit by going to www.shropshiresgreatoutdoors.co.uk where you will discover the vast number of places to see and visit through Shropshire.

When visiting Shropshire’s countryside, please make sure you respect the areas and behave responsibly so everyone can enjoy safely. For more information, see the countryside code.

For more information about COVID-19, visit the Shropshire Council website.

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Categories: Shropshire

Shropshire Council remembers Srebrenica twenty-five years on

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 07/03/2020 - 16:27

Shropshire Council is joining with Shrewsbury Inter Faith Forum and South Shropshire Inter Faith Forum to mark Remembering Srebrenica Week from 5 July to 12 July 2020.

The Srebrenica genocide took place during July 1995, where more than 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys were murdered because of their faith.

The Council along with both interfaith forums are marking the week with a virtual lighting of a Holocaust candle with three wicks, denoting the world faiths of Christianity, Islam and Judaism. The Holocaust candle is used for interfaith ceremonies within Shropshire schools to mark Holocaust Memorial Day on 27 January. The aim is to ensure the Holocaust and other genocides are never forgotten, to help children learn about the history of persecution towards groupings, and aid their understanding of the importance of fostering good relationships between people of different faiths.

Councillor Peter Nutting, Leader of Shropshire Council, said:

Here in Shropshire, we will continue to teach our primary school children about the Holocaust and other genocides including Srebrenica, ensuring that these atrocities are never forgotten. This year, with it being the 25th anniversary of the Srebrenica genocide, the interfaith forums made particular reference to this in the ceremonies we held with schools in January. We also included material about the genocide in our week-long display in the foyer at Shirehall to coincide with the ceremonies.

 Although we cannot commemorate in the usual ways with gatherings in churches and other community buildings, we will take this moment to remember all those who died in Bosnia, through the virtual lighting of the Holocaust candle that will appear on our website.

 

The Council’s commemoration links with ongoing efforts to work with communities and schools to commemorate annual Holocaust Memorial Day, through planting a cherry tree every year and in so doing growing a cherry tree orchard of remembrance across the county. For 2020, trees were planted at Onny and Lydbury North primary schools.

Mark Michaels, for the South Shropshire Interfaith Forum, said:

I have been to Bosnia myself as a member of one of the UK delegations organised by Remembering Srebrenica. I share what I have learned from this experience, in our ceremonies with local children, so that the focus is upon remembering not only those who died during the Holocaust, but also those who died in subsequent genocides, and how people of different faiths worked together then and work together now.

 

 Notes to Editors

The Srebrenica Flower is a symbol of remembrance of the Srebrenica Genocide. Its eleven petals represent the day the genocide began, while their white colour represents the innocence of its victims. The flower’s green centre represents hope for justice and recognition of the genocide.

Remembering Srebrenica is a charitable organisation funded by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government and supported by the Foreign Office. Its aim is to raise awareness of the genocide in Bosnia and bring people together to tackle hatred and help build safer, stronger communities in the UK. Since its creation in 2013, Remembering Srebrenica has educated 100,000 young people on the lessons from Srebrenica, organised close to 7,500 memorial events and activities right across the country and created 1,450 Community Champions who pledge to stand up to hatred and intolerance in their communities.

Each year, the organisation seeks to raise awareness during Srebrenica Memorial Week by collaborating with councils, schools, faith groups and other organisations with over 1,100 acts of commemoration taking place in 2019. This year’s Srebrenica Memorial Week will be taking place from 5 July to 12 July where communities across the UK will commemorate the 25th anniversary of the genocide, where over 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys were murdered, simply because of their faith.

The organisation has made the following commentary:

“As an organisation we believe that we must ensure that we never forget about the genocide and reaffirm our commitment to standing up against all forms of hatred and prejudice that targets groups based on their religion, ethnicity, gender, sexuality or any type of difference.

 “The theme “Every Action Matters” seeks to encourage every person to reflect upon their own behaviour and choices that they make, and demonstrate that however insignificant it may seem, every action matters, whether positive or negative. It aims to show that those who stand up and unite against hatred can make a difference. It sets out to dispel the notion that one person cannot make a difference and show that the action of one individual does matter and that they can achieve a great deal, however small their action may appear initially.”

The local background here is that Shropshire Council is continuing efforts to grow a cherry tree orchard of remembrance across Shropshire, working with primary and secondary schools and inter faith forums and local Shropshire Councillors. We identify a primary school each year, and are seeking to spread the orchard across the county and to cover all points of the compass in so doing. The schools for 2020 represent the south and west of the county. There are now twelve such trees in Shropshire.

For more information, please see resources on the following websites

Remembering Srebrenica website: www.srebrenica.org.uk

HMD Trust website: www.hmd.org.uk

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Categories: Shropshire

Advice for businesses about plans for new temporary pavement licences

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 07/03/2020 - 15:06

Shropshire businesses are being advised that Shropshire Council cannot currently accept new applications for temporary pavement licences, as the necessary legislation has not yet come into effect and is unlikely to do so before 21 July.

Last week the Government announced proposed new legislation regarding pavement licences to introduce a new streamlined and cheaper route for businesses such as cafes, restaurants and bars to secure a licence to place furniture on the highway. The purpose of this is to support businesses to operate safely while social distancing measures remain in place and to provide much needed income over the summer months, protecting as many hospitality jobs as possible.

Frances Darling, trading standards and licensing operations manager, said

“As the council is unable to accept applications from businesses for a pavement licence, businesses must ensure that if they choose to use, temporarily, any additional or new highway space that it is managed responsibly in order to protect pedestrians, particularly those with mobility or visual impairments and other disabilities.

“Businesses will also need to ensure that all pedestrian and vehicular requirements are considered so as not to cause an obstruction. They must also ensure that the use of an area does not cause a nuisance to local residents or other businesses, that they do not use an area that already has an established use – such as a Saturday market or another trader’s permitted area – that they have adequate public liability insurance, and that they do not endanger the public. Businesses are also advised to ensure the use of the space takes into account the need to provide adequate social distancing.”

Once the legislation is passed businesses will be required to obtain permission from the council and obtain a pavement licence. The council website will be updated with guidance on the application process once the law is brought into effect.

Gwilym Butler, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for communities, place planning and regulatory services, said:

“If the outdoor area is poorly managed, this may lead to objections when your pavement licence application is in its formal consultation period and this will have to be considered as part of the council’s decision on whether or not to grant your application for a pavement licence. Hence, it is very important to follow guidance and keep your customers and the public safe.”

Shropshire Council has produced a new toolkit for businesses offering support and advice about safely reopening as lockdown measures are eased. It’s designed to provide a quick and simple guide to a lot of the information and resources needed to help support businesses during these challenging times.

A new annexe has been added today (3 July) to provide further guidance to businesses planning to reopen from 4 July.

This includes information on:

• Those businesses that can open from 4 July 2020 and those which need to remain closed.
• The commercial use of outdoor space for businesses.
• Trading on the pavement and ‘pop-up’ markets.
• The supply of alcohol.

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Categories: Shropshire

Toolkit offers advice for Shropshire businesses re-opening from 4 July

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 07/03/2020 - 13:58

business toolkit july annexe cover

A new toolkit for businesses offering important advice about reopening as lockdown measures are eased has been updated to include information for those planning to reopen from tomorrow (Saturday 4 July).

The toolkit – Reopening your business in Shropshire – has been produced by Shropshire Council and can be found on the council;’s website.

It’s designed to provide a quick and simple guide to a lot of the information and resources businesses need to help support them during these challenging times.

The toolkit was published on 12 June, and will be regularly updated as Government guidance is updated. The new annexe has been added today (3 July) providing further guidance to businesses planning to reopen from this weekend.

The annexe includes information on:

• Those businesses that can open from 4 July 2020 and those which need to remain closed.
• The commercial use of outdoor space for businesses.
• Trading on the pavement and ‘pop-up’ markets.
• The supply of alcohol.

In the toolkit businesses will be able to find the latest government guidance and what it means to them, along with a back-to-work checklist of things to consider before re-opening. They will also find, in a resource pack, some downloadable posters that can be printed and displayed to help staff and customers safely visit their premises.

Steve Charmley, Cabinet member for assets, economic growth and regeneration, said:

“We want to support our businesses to operate and open safely and effectively especially as lockdown measures start to ease. Getting businesses back on their feet and supporting our local economy is key.

“We understand this is a challenging time for businesses and sometimes it can be difficult to keep up-to-date with all of the latest information. The Government has announced that certain businesses can start to re-open from Monday, and we also recognise that many businesses have been operating safely throughout lockdown as well.

“We’re sure this new toolkit will prove to be a valuable resource for all of our local businesses and I encourage them to read and make good use of it.”

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Categories: Shropshire

Coronavirus: Shropshire Council’s culture and leisure facilities prepare to re-open

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 07/03/2020 - 13:24

Selected culture and leisure sites, facilities and services managed by Shropshire Council are preparing for a phased re-opening from Saturday 4 July 2020.

These latest preparations are in line with the recent easing of the lockdown restrictions announced by the Government.

Ahead of re-opening, sites will have appropriate measures in place to ensure social distancing and high hygiene standards can be maintained and the safety of visitors, staff and local communities is protected.

To ensure public and staff safety, some sites will only be re-opened partially.

Lezley Picton, Shropshire Council Cabinet member for culture, leisure, waste and communications, said:

“We’re pleased that we are able to start the phased re-opening of our visitor attractions, leisure and tourism facilities across Shropshire from 4 July 2020.

“We are working hard to ensure strict measures are in place to maintain social distancing and hygiene to achieve our number one priority – to protect the health and safety of staff, local communities and visitors.

“I’d like to thank everyone who has been following the lockdown rules so diligently and for showing patience and togetherness as we begin to move slowly back to something like normality.”

Where will be re-opening and when?

Severn Valley Country Park – Kiosk

From Saturday 4 July 2020 visitors to Severn Valley Country Park will be able to enjoy take-away food as the café re-opens. There are bins across the Park so please dispose of rubbish responsibly.

Public toilets will also be reopened and will be regularly cleaned to maintain public safety and high hygiene standards. In line with Government and Public Health England guidance, visitors are strongly advised to thoroughly wash their hands after using public toilets and regularly throughout the day.

Selected library services

A new ‘Ready Reads’ service will be launched on Monday 6 July 2020 by Shropshire Libraries offering an interim way for people to get hold of new books to read or listen to.

This service will operate from Oswestry, Ludlow and Shrewsbury libraries and is the first stage of the phased safe re-opening of libraries across the county. For more information, see the press release.

Stop. Café, Visitor Information Centre & museum shop at SM&AG

On Wednesday 8 July, stop. café bar will reopen at Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery. The café will have safety measures in place in line with Government guidance to protect the health and safety of staff and customers.

Measures will be in place to limit the number of people using the indoor and outdoor areas at any one time to enable social distancing and high hygiene standards will be maintained. It will be open from Wednesday – Sunday so they can closely monitor the impact of the measures put in place.

On the same day, the museum shop and visitor information centre will also re-open.

Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery, however, will remain closed until further notice to enable appropriate measures to be put in place. More information will be made available when appropriate.

Supporting Shropshire’s tourism sector

With the latest easing of coronavirus lockdown measures announced by the Government, Shropshire is preparing to safely welcome back local residents and visitors to its’ extraordinary culture and hospitality venues.

Shropshire Council and Telford & Wrekin Council have joined forces to support the delivery of a safe and sustainable restart of the tourism sector and are working with businesses and partners support permitted visitor and outdoor attractions to reopen safely.

What sites Shropshire Council are already open?

Country Parks, heritage sites and Public Rights of Way have remained open throughout the coronavirus pandemic and have been a lifeline for residents.

Meole Brace Golf Course is open for up to four people per tee with pre-booking being essential to maintain social distancing and the safety of staff, visitors and the local community.

Details about the re-opening of other sites will be announced in due course.

Work is ongoing to prepare other sites including leisure centres and theatres to be able to safely re-open in due course. For the meantime, these sites will remain closed for the continued protection of staff, visitors and communities.

For more information about how to stay safe when outdoors or visiting a site, see coronavirus pages on the Shropshire Council website.

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News from our partners: Shrewsbury joins towns across the world to offer thanks to healthcare workers on the NHS’s 72nd birthday

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 07/03/2020 - 13:12
News from our partners: Shrewsbury BID

Shrewsbury is joining other towns across the world to offer its thanks to healthcare workers on the NHS’s 72nd birthday.

A video showing giant projections of clapping hands on town centre landmarks is being launched on social media and people are being encouraged to share the post to spread their thanks this Sunday.

It’s all part of the #iClapFor project, started by textile artist, Ian Berry, who first projected an animation of his hands clapping onto a building in London.

Since then it has been used in towns and cities across the UK and world, being projected on the White Cliffs of Dover, Brooklyn Bridge in New York, the Angel of the North, Los Angeles, Colombia and Sau Paulo.

It has now come to Shrewsbury, with projectionist, Andy McKeown, projecting the animation on buildings including Shrewsbury Museum and Art Gallery, the Market Hall and St Mary’s Church.

The project is being coordinated by Shrewsbury BID, with the video being posted across the Original Shrewsbury social media platforms.

Jonathan Soden, director of Shrewsbury BID and owner of The Soden Collection in Wyle Cop, said the NHS’s birthday seemed a fitting time to bring the artwork to Shrewsbury.

Ian Berry’s clapping hands have become an iconic image being projected on buildings across the world, so it’s absolutely fantastic that we have been able to bring them to Shrewsbury,” he said.

Andy McKeown has done a fantastic job of projecting the image onto a range of recognisable buildings in the town centre, and it’s a really inspiring sight.

The video, put together by 7video who are based in Shrewsbury, looks great and we hope lots of people share it on social media to spread the message far and wide.

When launching the project, Ian Berry, said:

With the help of friends, family and followers, a piece of art showing a simple clap has been projected on walls across the world.

It has gone the length and breadth of the UK, to the USA, Sweden, Italy, Mexico and beyond. It’s truly incredible what humanity can do when we all come together.

Councillor Peter Nutting, Leader of Shropshire Council added;

I’m looking forward to seeing the projections of the #iClapFor project across the town to celebrate healthcare workers on the anniversary of the NHS.

On behalf of Shropshire Council we would like to wish our NHS a very happy 72nd birthday.  We know and appreciate the vital role the NHS service plays in all our lives.

We are proud to have one of the best healthcare systems in the world and know that the people behind this great service work so hard behind the scenes, to ensure quality local services are there for us when we need them. I will be joining in the final Clap for Carers on July 5 to say thank you to all our NHS colleagues and our key workers for their work and sacrifice in tackling the coronavirus pandemic.

 

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Going to the pub this weekend? Be sensible and stay safe

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 07/03/2020 - 12:00

People heading to the pub from tomorrow (Saturday 4 July) are being urged to stay safe by observing the measures that premises have put in place, following social distancing guidelines, and behaving sensibly.

Karen Collier, head of regulatory services with Shropshire Council, said:

“We know that many people will want to visit pubs once they reopen from this Saturday. If you do, we just ask you to please respect the hygiene measures in place and be supportive of pub landlords and staff. To ensure it is a safe and enjoyable experience for all, please follow any signage or instructions, and remember to observe social distancing – that’s 2m where possible, or 1m as long as you follow the extra measures to keep yourself and others safe, including sitting side-to-side or using screens.

“And remember, social distancing is required between customers of different households or support bubbles.”

Gwilym Butler, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for communities, place planning and regulatory services, said:

“Coronavirus remains a serious risk to health and the protection of the health and safety of the public is our number one priority.

“I know that the vast majority of people who have waited a long time to return to the social environment of our wonderful Shropshire pubs will do so responsibly, but we know some people will drink to excess and become vulnerable to harm or indeed cause harm to others. Anti-social and criminal behaviour that impacts on the safety of our communities is simply not acceptable and I urge people to act responsibly.

“It is extremely important that we all continue to follow the Government’s guidance, particularly around social distancing and other key public health measures, in order to prevent the spread of the virus when we are out and about enjoying the greater freedoms that we will have from 4 July.”

Government guidance for pubs and restaurants can be found here.

Further information

We can all help control the virus if we all stay alert. This means you must: 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 (2 metres apart where possible); wash your hands regularly; and do not leave home if you or anyone in your household has symptoms.

Further advice can be sought from, and COVID-19 concerns can be reported to, Shropshire Council by email to advicecompliance@shropshire.gov.uk or telephone 0345 678 9067 and select option 3.

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Extra space for pedestrians in Shrewsbury’s Castle Street to remain until September

Shropshire Council News Feed - Thu, 07/02/2020 - 14:22

The trial suspension of the bus lane in Castle Street, Shrewsbury to provide additional space for pedestrians is set to remain in place until the end of September.

The plan of the work can be seen here: Castle Street Shrewsbury – Social Distance Plan.

It’s one of many measures put in place around the town, and across the county, to aid social distancing and enable people to safely visit Shropshire’s market towns.

The lane has already been closed since 15 June under an Emergency Traffic Order, but an Experimental Traffic Order which enables the scheme to stay in place is set to come into effect next Monday (6 July).

Under the scheme, the bus lane will be suspended from the Castle Street/Pride Hill junction, to the Castle Street/Chester Street junction to provide additional footpath width for pedestrian use.

Three pay and display parking bays will be Loading Only at any time, but the existing loading and disabled bays towards the top of the road will remain.

Due to safety concerns and retention of access for loading requirements it won’t be possible to provide a contraflow cycle lane as originally hoped.

The works will be carried out by Traffix with monitoring carried out by WSP on behalf of Shropshire Council

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NHS AND COUNCILS WORKING TOGETHER TO RESTORE HEALTH AND CARE SERVICES

Shropshire Council News Feed - Thu, 07/02/2020 - 13:01

 

All NHS organisations and the two Councils in Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin are working closely together to bring back on-line some of the services that were temporarily stopped, slightly altered or that moved location following the outbreak of coronavirus (Covid-19).

At the outset of the pandemic, services including local hospitals, GPs, health visitors and social care staff responded quickly by changing the way they worked. While some services are returning to how they were, some changes will need to remain in place to make sure the best health and care can be provided in the coming months and that people at the front line who provide our care are prepared to handle any future increase in cases.

Steve Trenchard, Executive Director of Transformation for Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin CCGs said: “We’d like to thank local people for their continuing patience and understanding during this difficult time. For the safety and wellbeing of our staff, patients and their families we had to make some immediate decisions about everyone’s health and care and we know that for some people these service changes have caused concern and may be inconvenient.

“While we are all pleased to see that the number of cases continues to go down, we can’t be sure that will continue. Hopefully, we won’t see an increase to the same levels again, but as shops and businesses re-open and social distancing rules are relaxed, we need to make sure our hospitals, GPs and other services are ready to handle any further outbreaks.”

Dr Jane Povey, Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP) Clinical Lead said:

We are having to make some tough decisions about what services we do bring back and what we don’t for now. These decisions are being taken by the doctors and nurses in our hospitals and in the community. Our main concern is and always will be everyone’s safety.

Many of our staff have been asked to work in new roles and locations; equipment has been moved to where it is most needed to care for people; we need to make sure we have enough personal protective equipment, such as masks, gloves and aprons; and we have fewer beds in our hospital wards as we have had to move them further apart which takes up more space. This all means that while some services are being restored to how they were before the outbreak, we can’t switch them all back on straight away and we hope people can understand these reasons why and bear with us.

Many services have been kept as they always were including A&E departments and essential vaccinations for babies, pre-school children and adults. Services that were changed and are being restored include children’s (paediatric) cancer services.

 

 

More health and care services will continue to be restored over the coming weeks. Where the changes affect only a limited number of known patients they will be contacted directly by the service. Where the service is available to all patients and the public, changes will be communicated through websites, newsletters, posters and leaflets, social media and local newspapers and radio stations.

ENDS

For media enquiries please contact:

Pam Schreier

Head of STP Communications & Engagement

Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP)

Email: pam.schreier1@nhs.net

 

Note to editors:

Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP) is made up of health and care commissioners and providers. Partners include Shropshire Council, Telford & Wrekin Council, NHS Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group, NHS Telford & Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Group, Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust, Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Midlands Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and Shropshire Community Health NHS Trust.

 

Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin STP has been created to encourage health and care organisations to work more closely together to improve outcomes and care for local people, reduce pressures on services and make best use of our financial resources.

 

It sets out ambitious plans for transformed neighbourhood services; safe and effective hospital care; ways in which new technology can be harnessed; and how gaps in the workforce can be filled and financial resources better spent.

 

Shropshire, Telford & Shropshire STP is one of 44 sustainability and transformation partnerships across England.

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Categories: Shropshire

#takecarewithselfcare Campaign Launched by Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin Health Bosses

Shropshire Council News Feed - Thu, 07/02/2020 - 11:00

#takecarewithselfcare during the pandemic is the message being shared by Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) as part of a new health campaign launched today.

This latest campaign from the county’s healthcare commissioners recommends that medicine cabinets are fully stocked during coronavirus to help ease minor ailment symptoms straightaway, aid a faster recovery, and use health services at the right time.

Medicine cabinet essentials recommended by the Medicines Management Teams at both CCGs include anti-histamines, a thermometer, sunscreen, pain relief (paracetamol and ibuprofen), a first aid kit (plasters, bandage, antiseptic cream), and an indigestion treatment.

These are all available to buy without prescription and at a small cost from pharmacies and supermarkets as well as other stores across the county. If you need advice please visit NHS 111 online or speak to your local pharmacist for self-care help and advice.

Top tips will also be shared as part of the campaign to help inform people of how they can #takecarewithselfcare in the home during the pandemic and be prepared for any minor ailments.

Dr Julian Povey, local GP and Chair of Shropshire CCG, said:

It is not always necessary to contact your GP for common ailments as symptoms can be eased with the help of a well-stocked medicine cabinet in the home.

“A lot of minor aliments can be treated with self-care techniques, but you should make an appointment with your GP practice if you have an illness or injury that will not go away, such as persistent vomiting, ear pain, stomach ache or backache.

Dr Jo Leahy, local GP and Chair of Telford and Wrekin CCG, said:

A healthy medicine cabinet is a simple but significant way to help you, your family, and the local NHS during the pandemic.

Looking on NHS 111 online or speaking to a local pharmacist is also a good way to get healthcare advice and treatment without the need to contact your GP practice. Help is free, plus if you are unsure whether you need to see a doctor you can just ask for their advice.

 

Ends

For more information please contact:
Rachael Jones, Communications and Engagement Specialist
NHS Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group
E-mail: rachael.jones31@nhs.net

Note to Editors:

Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Groups

Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) are responsible for the planning and commissioning (buying) of health and care services from a range of providers for the people of Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin. They also have a duty to monitor these services to ensure they provide a high level of care and are value for money.

They are clinically led organisations with 53 GP practices which provide healthcare services for patients across the County registered with a local GP. The CCGs buy a wide range of services and these include GP and Primary Care services through to hospital care as well as community services and mental health services.

For further information please email: shrccg.communicationsteam@nhs.net.

 

 

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Shropshire Libraries to launch Ready Reads service

Shropshire Council News Feed - Wed, 07/01/2020 - 16:06

As part of phased reopening plans, Shropshire Libraries are launching a ‘Ready Reads’ service from Monday 6 July 2020.

‘Ready Reads’ is a ‘click & collect’ style service offering tailored book choices selected by library staff. Although libraries themselves will remain closed for the time being, Shrewsbury, Oswestry and Ludlow libraries will be available as pick-up points for ‘Ready Reads’ initially, with other libraries to be included over the coming weeks.

Michael Lewis, Shropshire Council’s Library Service Manager said:

“We’re offering Ready Reads as an interim way of enabling customers to get hold of books to read or listen to. So although libraries won’t be open just yet people can still get some reading choices to enjoy and tide them over. We’ll be operating Ready Reads as a contactless service from library foyers and any books returned by other customers will be quarantined for 72 hours.”

To use ‘Ready Reads’ customers can complete an online form that includes questions about what sort of books are wanted, and based on that information library staff will put together selections of books then contact the customer once they’re ready to collect. The form is available on the Shropshire Council website. Alternatively the service can be accessed by telephoning one of the participating libraries.

Shropshire Libraries are following national guidelines for libraries by taking a phased approach to reopening that ensures services can be delivered safely.

Lezley Picton, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for culture, leisure, waste and communications, said:

“Ready Reads is the first step towards libraries being reopened and we’re currently finalising plans to open up all our libraries through July and into early August. We’ll update with details on this shortly as we’re very aware that library customers are keen to know what’s happening with their library.”

Once the details are confirmed full information for all libraries will be available on the library webpages at www.shropshire.gov.uk/libraries.

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#Km4Cancer – Shropshire Council’s IT team to go ‘around the world’ for Cancer Research

Shropshire Council News Feed - Wed, 07/01/2020 - 13:23

The ICT department at Shropshire Council have today (1 July 2020) embarked on a trip around the world to raise money for Cancer Research UK.

#Km4Cancer will see the team track their kilometres travelled by foot, bike or rowing boat over a 53-day period, with the aim of travelling the 32,281 kilometres.

It follows the recent sad death from cancer of a member of the team.

Andrew Boxall, the council’s head of technology, said:

“We wanted to do something for charity after losing our friend and colleague Andrew Bennett to cancer less than a month ago. Andrew had many passions and a notable one was his love of trains, so when we found an around the world train trip we decided to attempt the same distance over the same period – which seemed sensible at the time!

“I’m confident we can do it as we’re passionate about the charity, Cancer Research. As a department, cancer has hit us many times with people’s wives, parents and other loved ones being taken and the loss of Andrew spurred us on to do something in his memory and those we’ve lost.

“Whilst this may not seem like a big challenge, our roles are largely sedentary as we’re required to be behind a computer screen for most of our days. We’re also discussing extra sponsorship from some of the big technology companies we work with for going further than the 32,281km – so it’ll be interesting to see how far we manage to go, and more importantly, how much we raise. Good luck everyone, I’ve got my trainers at the ready!”

The team will track the miles taken on their smartphones and submit totals regularly to a central tracking system. A website will track their progress showing where they would have been on the train journey around the world, with the team posting regular updates from social media accounts using #km4cancer.

Andrew Bennett

Michele Leith, Shropshire Council’s director of workforce and transformation, said:

“When the team told me about their idea for this, I first confirmed they were not actually going around the world, before encouraging them and then agreeing to take part as we want to do something in Andrew’s memory. We are very aware that exercise and health are factors in our likelihood of getting cancer, so this is an opportunity to do something good in several ways as we can raise money, get fit and give a small tribute to a fantastic member of the team who will be sorely missed.” –Each of those taking part need to go travel just under 50km a week for the 53 days and have agreed to walk, run, cycle, row or any physical exercise that helps them travel a distance. All these details will be recorded and presented to keep a tally of their efforts.

“As an ICT team they are known for doing things a little differently. It’s perhaps the nature of their work, and this is another example of them coming up with an innovative solution to raise money for an excellent cause. Myself and my fellow councillors will be sponsoring the team and we urge you to consider doing the same. I will also be taking part as portfolio holder.”

Lee Chapman, Cabinet member for transformation and digital infrastructure, said:

“I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Andrew Bennett for his services to the council. His death has been a great loss to the whole department.”

You can keep up to date with the km4cancer challenge via the Shropshire Council social media accounts – just search for Shropshire Council or #km4cancer.

You can also make a donation here.

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Categories: Shropshire

Oswestry to receive £700,000 from government to help tackle empty properties and enhance town’s heritage

Shropshire Council News Feed - Tue, 06/30/2020 - 10:49

Photo: oneoswestry.co.uk

Councillors and business leaders have welcomed news that Oswestry is set to receive £700,000 of government funding to help tackle empty properties and enhance the heritage of the town, to boost its economic recovery in the wake of the Coronavirus crisis.

It follows Oswestry’s successful bid to Historic England last year to become a High Streets Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ).

The successful bid was made by Shropshire Council, in partnership with the Future Oswestry Group, which also comprises Oswestry Town Council and Oswestry Business Improvement District (BID).

Overall the scheme will have a total budget of £1.25 million, including a contribution of £500,000 from Oswestry Town Council and anticipated private investment. Becoming a High Streets Heritage Action Zone will help to support the aims of the Future Oswestry Group to develop the long-term vision for Oswestry town centre.

The Future Oswestry Group partners are currently working with Historic England to finalise the HSHAZ programme so that it supports the town’s economic recovery following the easing of lockdown measures.

The funding will be used to deliver a repair scheme for key strategic buildings, look at converting empty buildings with mixture of uses including workspace, retail and restaurants on the ground floor, with residential units above.

There will be permanent enhancements to the historic environment including key shop fronts and a residential conversions programme for the upper floors of shop units to provide a number of new homes within the town, plus increased spend and an enhanced town centre experience. Together with the other measures the Future Oswestry Group partners are putting in place, such as temporary traffic orders to assist social distancing, this will aid the town’s economic recovery as the lockdown is eased.

There will also be a separate £50,000 that the town’s vibrant community-based heritage and arts groups can use to develop projects to further support the overall aims of the scheme.

As part of the HSHAZ scheme the Future Oswestry Group will engage with the Civic Society, community and education groups to provide an inclusive project, creating opportunities for residents and young people to become fully involved.

The HSHAZ programme is rooted in community-based participation, and now that the funding has been announced the Future Oswestry Group can collaborate with groups to ensure community engagement is embedded in the delivery of the HSHAZ programme.
This is a great opportunity to steer investment to improve the prosperity of the town and adapt to the challenges the high street was experiencing, even before Covid-19.

The HSHAZ programme and community engagement will be supported by the planned place-making work, which intends to build on the body of work undertaken to date such as the Oswestry 2020 Town Plan, and the work of partners and key stakeholders.

Work will begin on the master plan and movement strategy including consultation activities – subject to COVID-19 restrictions – over the coming weeks.

Steve Charmley, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for assets, economic growth and regeneration, said:

“Building on the work of the Future Oswestry Group, the HSHAZ funding provides an exciting opportunity to tackle and address some of the heritage issues and empty properties within the conservation area of the town. Through a strong place-based approach to management of the high street, we will be working with key partners to deliver this vision and to bring the town’s high street to life.

“This is an exciting time for Oswestry, and the HSHAZ funding will give us the ability to push on with some of the projects that had already been started through the Future Oswestry Group. This collaboration between Shropshire Council, Oswestry Town Council and the BID is key to the success of ensuring that we maximise on the impact of the funding.”

The Mayor of Oswestry, Councillor Duncan Kerr, said:

“This announcement is excellent news. Tackling empty properties has been a priority for local people and this investment will help to rejuvenate the town centre, protect the town’s heritage characteristics and make it a place where people want to spend time.
This investment from Historic England together with the town councils contribution will make a difference.

We are very much looking forward to working with Shropshire Council and partners to deliver.”

Adele Nightingale, Oswestry BID manager, said:

“Oswestry is town with a proud history and a bright future. This funding will allow us to make the best of our heritage whilst improving the look and feel of the town for workers, residents and visitors. It will also encourage continued development and business investment in the town.”

Issued on behalf of the Future Oswestry Group

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Categories: Shropshire

Advice for businesses and individuals who want to make or distribute face coverings

Shropshire Council News Feed - Mon, 06/29/2020 - 20:56

Shropshire Council’s Trading Standards Service is highlighting important safety requirements that small and large businesses, organisations and individuals need to know if they want to manufacture or distribute face coverings.

We are all now required to wear face coverings on public transport or when attending a hospital as a visitor or outpatient.  We are also encouraged to wear them in other enclosed public spaces where social distancing is not possible and where we will come into contact with people we do not normally meet.

But, what is the law surrounding the sale of these items, and how do they differ from face masks?

Face coverings are items that cover your mouth and nose whilst allowing you to breathe comfortably. They are an added precaution to reduce the likelihood of a person with coronavirus (but not displaying symptoms) from infecting another. They are not personal protective equipment (PPE) or medical devices and should not be sold or donated as such. Face coverings should only be sold for private use. They cannot be sold to businesses (unless for resale) and any labelling should not make reference to work use.

The manufacture and sale of face coverings is governed by the General Product Safety Regulations (GPSR). These regulations ensure that all products are safe products. To this end, the regulations place duties on producers and distributors to ensure the safety of the product. In relation to face coverings, the Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS) has issued guidance for manufacturers and makers of face coverings.

Face masks are either PPE or medical devices, depending on the level of protection that they offer. They are stringently controlled, although the government has reduced some administrative requirements on businesses looking to supply PPE.  PPE would still be required to undergo conformity assessment by a notified body.  Some products may be both PPE and medical devices and these products must comply with both sets of requirements. Further information on PPE and medical devices can be accessed using the links.

Non-compliant PPE can be sold as face coverings if it can be demonstrated that it complies with GPSR. Any indication that the product was designed as PPE (for example, a CE mark) must be removed and the business reworking the product would become a producer for the purposes of GPSR.  Further guidance on GPSR can be found on Business Companion.

Frances Darling, Shropshire Council’s trading standards and licensing operations manager, said:

The recent changes in the law and guidance around the new protective measures that we are now required and encouraged to take to further reduce the spread of COVID-19 means there will clearly be an increase in demand for face coverings.  Inevitably, there will be those who seek to exploit the COVID-19 crisis for their own financial gain by producing and supplying non-compliant, inferior and unsafe products.

“It is crucial that face coverings meet safety standards and if anyone is worried that items they have purchased may not be compliant, they should report their concerns to the Citizens Advice consumer helpline.

“Businesses, organisations and individuals who want to manufacture or distribute face coverings for use by the public must ensure they comply with relevant safety requirements.  I strongly urge anyone who is considering making face coverings to read the nationally-available guidance and, if they are at all unsure as to the requirements, they should seek further advice from the Trading Standards Service.

Gwilym Butler Portfolio Holder for Communities, Place Planning and Regulatory Services said:

We understand that there are many volunteers out there doing a great deal of good work in our communities to support the vulnerable through the COVID-19 crisis, including making face coverings to donate to charities or to provide them to people who are unable to access or afford face coverings or masks themselves; however, we do have a responsibility to ensure businesses, organisations and individuals who are producing and distributing face coverings, PPE and medical devices do so legally and responsibly in order to help us protect the health and safety of the public and employees.

“We have highly knowledgeable and skilled Trading Standards staff who can provide specialist advice in relation to face coverings and can also assist businesses to access the right information from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and the Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) in respect of the manufacture and distribution of PPE and medical devices.  If you need to speak to Trading Standards, please do get in touch. They are here to help.

Further advice can be sought from the Council’s Trading Standards Service by emailing advicecompliance@shropshire.gov.uk or telephone 0345 678 9067 (select option 3).

Concerns about potentially non-compliant or unsafe products should be reported to the Citizens Advice consumer service on 0808 223 1133.

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Categories: Shropshire

Centre of Shrewsbury set to remain traffic-free until end of summer

Shropshire Council News Feed - Mon, 06/29/2020 - 16:03

Wyle Cop in Shrewsbury is closed to traffic heading uphill

The centre of Shrewsbury is set to remain traffic-free during the day for the rest of the summer to help keep people safe and help businesses to maximise their potential over the summer.

High Street will be closed to traffic between 11am and 4pm – a change from the original timing of 11am to 6pm – and Wyle Cop will be open to outward bound traffic only, on a 24-hour basis.

All car parks remain open and accessible with Frankwell and Abbey Foregate remaining free of charge until further notice to support the town centre’s recovery.

Shropshire Council, as the highway authority and part of the multi-agency Shrewsbury Recovery Taskforce, says the temporary interventions are intended to be in place until the end of September.

Councillor Peter Nutting, leader of Shropshire Council, said he wanted to emphasise that the changes were temporary and not a long-term solution.

He said:

“Closing High Street to traffic during the day gives us two major benefits – it creates much greater capacity for people to move around the town centre with social distancing and will enable businesses to use more outside space.

“The idea is that cafes, bars and restaurants will be able to apply to use the loading bays for outside seating areas, which will be vital to help them serve a growing number of customers and drive economic activity for the whole town.

“We will be putting further measures in place to encourage traffic to go around the edge of town rather than using the diversion route along Town Walls, and we are monitoring the traffic flow on a regular basis.

“As we said at the outset, these are not long-term solutions, they are temporary interventions to enable the town centre to welcome people in a safe way as we start our recovery.”

Seb Slater, executive director of Shrewsbury BID, which is part of the Shrewsbury Recovery Taskforce along with Shropshire Council and Shrewsbury Town Council, said hospitality businesses were looking forward to opening from next weekend.

He said:

“The overall feedback from businesses has been very understanding and supportive of the measures and we do appreciate that businesses are having to adapt particularly with regards to deliveries.

“Footfall figures measured by Springboard UK in Shrewsbury since the highway measures show Shrewsbury to be outperforming other UK towns and cities benchmarks by up to 20%.

“We also hope that by announcing the intention for the highway measures to be in place until the end of September, it gives businesses clarity for the summer which they can plan around.

“We are doing a lot of work with our council partners to help businesses make the most of this opportunity to use outside space creatively, which will help kick-start the local economy and bring a really welcoming and positive atmosphere to the town centre.”

Councillor Alan Mosley, leader of Shrewsbury Town Council, said he welcomed the traffic interventions being in place until the end of September.

He added:

“Removing through-traffic from key streets in the centre of Shrewsbury during the day during the summer is already giving the town centre a much more welcoming atmosphere and seem to have found favour with visitors and most businesses.

“I know the effects of the traffic schemes are being constantly monitored, and further modifications can be made if necessary.

“This is actually a really good opportunity to test the impact of removing traffic from the town centre and creating pedestrian priority zones, over an extended period. This means that any discussions about longer-term plans will be based on this evidence and on wide consultation with the whole community.”

Press release issued by Shrewsbury Recovery Taskforce

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Categories: Shropshire

Coronavirus: Businesses reminded to continue to follow restrictions and guidance

Shropshire Council News Feed - Mon, 06/29/2020 - 12:34

Businesses that are set to re-open from 4 July – those in the hospitality and leisure sector, plus hairdressers and barbers – are being reminded that they must be sufficiently prepared to open in a ‘COVID-secure’ manner.

Shropshire Council has welcomed the most recent easements that will lead to the reopening of hospitality businesses, holiday accommodation, leisure facilities and tourist attractions, as well as hairdressers and barbers from 4 July 2020, as this will provide a much-needed boost to the local economy.

However, the council’s trading standards and licensing team say it’s vital that businesses do so in line with the latest Government guidance and restrictions to protect the health and safety of staff and the public.

Meanwhile businesses not yet permitted to open are reminded that they must remain closed. These are tourist attractions that create medium and large gatherings, together with those offering very close proximity personal care services.

Any failure on the part of businesses to adhere to the restrictions and the government guidance will risk increasing the transmission of COVID-19 and may undermine the road to economic recovery.

Frances Darling, Shropshire Council’s trading standards and licensing operations manager, said:

“We do understand that these are extremely challenging times and we want to reassure businesses that we will provide the support they need. We also appreciate that the majority of businesses are committed to compliance and only want the best for their customers.

“We have highly-knowledgeable staff with the expertise and skills to advise and support businesses with any concerns they may have, and I would urge business owners to get in touch if you need any help.

“I specifically want to ask all our licensed hospitality businesses to ensure that not only do they operate in a COVID-secure way, but that they also pay significant attention to their legal responsibility to promote the four licensing objectives: the prevention of crime and disorder; public safety; the prevention of public nuisance; and the protection of children from harm.

“Since the Government introduced the legislation that enforced the closure of certain premises, council officers have adopted a proportionate and pragmatic approach to enforcement and this will continue.

“Nevertheless, licensees do need to be aware that significant failures to comply with their legal obligations under the Licensing Act may lead to formal enforcement action, including prosecution and licence review; this may ultimately lead to a business losing its licence. This is on top of the significant risk that the transmission rate of the coronavirus will increase, economic recovery will be undermined, and this will be detrimental to all.

“I want to thank all businesses for their efforts to prevent the spread of the coronavirus and ask that they continue to take their responsibilities seriously.”

Gwilym Butler, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for communities, place planning and regulatory services, said:

“The protection of the health and safety of the public is our number one priority, and everyone has a responsibility to support us in our endeavours to achieve this. I must urge everyone to remember that coronavirus remains a serious risk to health.

“I know that the vast majority of people who have waited a long time to return to the social environment of our wonderful Shropshire pubs and restaurants will do so responsibly, but we know some people will drink to excess and become vulnerable to harm or indeed cause harm to others. Anti-social and criminal behaviour that impacts on the safety of our communities is simply not acceptable and I urge people to act responsibly.

“The key advice is to know your limits, plan your day and decide in advance how you will get home safely.

“It is extremely important that we all continue to follow the Government’s guidance, particularly around two-metre social distancing and other key public health measures, in order to prevent the spread of the virus when we are out and about enjoying the greater freedoms that we will have from the 4 July.

“Please remember – stay alert, control the virus and save lives.”

Full details of the closure restrictions that will remain in force from 4 July are expected to be published shortly and additional guidance for businesses is available here.

Further information

We can all help control the virus if we all stay alert. This means you must: 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 (2 metres apart where possible); wash your hands regularly; and do not leave home if you or anyone in your household has symptoms.

Further advice can be sought from, and COVID-19 concerns can be reported to, Shropshire Council by email to advicecompliance@shropshire.gov.uk or telephone 0345 678 9067 and select option 3.

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Categories: Shropshire

Changes to on-street parking in Church Stretton

Shropshire Council News Feed - Mon, 06/29/2020 - 11:12

Following concerns about the recent amount of and – and upsurge in – on-street parking by visitors to Carding Mill Valley, and the ensuing public safety issues caused, Shropshire Council has introduced a ‘prohibition of parking’ on Shrewsbury Road and Churchill Road in Church Stretton.

The temporary traffic order will be effective on:

  • Shrewsbury Road between the school and Lutwyche Road.
  • On the north side of Churchill Road, from its junction with Shrewsbury Road to its junction with The Paddock.
  • On the south side of Churchill Road, around its junctions with Kennedy Close and Chartwell Close.

The temporary traffic order can be identified on site by the presence of enforceable ‘no waiting’ cones.

Residents who park on Churchill Road are asked to ensure that they adhere to the new restrictions by parking on the south side only.

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Categories: Shropshire

Applications open for new chief executive of Shropshire Council

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 06/26/2020 - 14:17

Shropshire Council’s Shirehall headquarters in Shrewsbury

Shropshire Council has today begun the search for its new chief executive.

The council is looking for a new CEO following the departure of Clive Wright by mutual agreement on 25 February. Since then, Andy Begley, executive director of adult social care and housing, and Karen Bradshaw, executive director of children’s services, have been serving as acting interim chief executives.

Applications for the role opened today, with more details available online at www.futureshropshire.com

The council is looking for an experienced officer who can drive forward Shropshire Council in what will be a challenging post-COVID-19 environment, and provide leadership and direction to its 2,500 staff.

The new chief executive’s key challenges will be dealing with the rising costs of adult care, the council’s digital transformation agenda, and developing the county’s many and varied town centres and communities.

Mounting adult care costs are a challenge for the council, increasing by £10m a year. Out of the council’s £600m gross turnover, £400m goes on adult’s and children’s social services. And economic growth is a priority in a largely rural county where 98% of businesses are small enterprises.

Peter Nutting, Leader of Shropshire Council, said:

“Shropshire is an ageing county as a lot of people retire here and adult social care represents 50% of our annual budget, so the new chief executive will need to focus on this sector as well as work closely with health partners.

“The long-term impact of the coronavirus is likely to mean more Shropshire Council staff based at home and working remotely. This will means both an acceleration in digital change as more employees work remotely, and also a culture change by staff with a greater focus on the communities they serve.

“Alongside digital transformation we must change the council’s culture, make it more public facing and community-focused so the new chief executive will also need to drive forward the organisation.

“And with a very large and ambitious programme of development and change over the coming years, we are looking for a chief executive who can lead this exciting agenda.”

Applications for the role close on Friday 24 July 2020.

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Categories: Shropshire

Coronavirus: Time running out to apply to Shropshire Council’s £4.5m business grant scheme

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 06/26/2020 - 12:47

Shropshire businesses affected by coronavirus have until Tuesday (30 June) to apply to Shropshire Council’s new £4.5 million ‘extension grant’ scheme.

More than £1.4 million has so far been awarded under the scheme – set up last month to support businesses who have been unable to access other COVID-19-related business grants.

Businesses who have already made an application over the last four weeks to this fund – and have yet to hear if they have been successful – do not need to apply again as their applications are registered and currently being considered.

Applications can be made online at shropshire.gov.uk/covid19extensiongrant

As of last Friday (19 June), 767 applications had been received from the first two application rounds, and 280 of these have been awarded a total of just over £1.4 million so far, with many more continuing to be processed for payment.

Of those who have been paid, more than 50 were B&Bs (receiving more than £125,000), more than 40 were market traders (receiving more than £100,000); and more than 20 were charities (receiving more than £100,000).

More than £220,000 has been awarded to those sharing offices; more than £700,000 has been paid to incubation/warehouse firms, and £175,000 has gone to large retail, hospitality and leisure businesses.

The latest – third – round of funding, launched on 15 June and due to close on 30 June, has focused on businesses within the retail, hospitality and leisure, business enabling and care sectors and has already seen almost 350 further applications received. These will be assessed following the closure of this round early next week, with the remainder of the funds expected to be allocated quickly in this competitive process.

Should any funding remain at the end of this assessment a further round would open in due course.

Steve Charmley, Cabinet member for assets, economic growth and regeneration, said:

“Over 1,100 applications have been made over the last four weeks, and many small businesses are already in receipt of their grants which is great news for both them and the Shropshire economy.

“The priority now is to assess the rest of the applications and see under which of the eligible criteria we have specified they will have the greatest chance of being awarded grant money. We have had some great Shropshire businesses make applications and obviously we would love to award every single one.

“With a limited amount of funding available Shropshire Council now needs to ensure the funding is used where it will have the greatest effect.”

Further information about the extension grant scheme is provided on Shropshire Council’s website – shropshire.gov.uk/covid19extensiongrant – alongside the link to the application form.

Grants are already available to eligible small businesses and businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sector. See shropshire.gov.uk/covid-19-grants

The extension scheme has been highly competitive, and asks businesses to evidence their losses and provide proof of their eligibility to the fund. Businesses must apply to the scheme, regardless of whether they have expressed an interest ahead of the scheme’s launch, to ensure a transparent and fair process takes place.

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Categories: Shropshire

Coronavirus: Response to cases of COVID-19 at a Shropshire food processing company

Shropshire Council News Feed - Fri, 06/26/2020 - 11:35

Shropshire Council is working with Public Health England (PHE) Midlands and ABP Food Group in Shropshire, and liaising with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and Food Standards Agency (FSA), following confirmation of cases of COVID-19 at the food production company.

In line with NHS guidance, any affected individuals are being asked to self-isolate at home for seven days, with members of their households to isolate for 14 days.

Dr Adrian Phillips, PHE Midlands Consultant in Communicable Disease Control, said:

“The management at ABP Food Group is co-operating fully with public health professionals and members of the HSE and FSA, to protect the health and wellbeing of their workforce.

“As we would expect at this stage of a pandemic, there have been cases among the workforce, as the virus is present in the local community. The company put extensive measures in place from the start of the pandemic, and public health partners are working with the business to assess if any further measures should be implemented in the workplace and looking at the picture in the wider community.”

A spokesperson from ABP Food Group said:

“The health and wellbeing of our staff is of the utmost importance, so we have been keen to co-operate in whatever way possible with PHE, the council, the FSA and HSE.

“As soon as restrictions were announced by the Government, we put extensive measures* in place to reduce the risk of our staff catching COVID-19, many of which went above and beyond the national guidance, including the installation of Perspex screens at workstations and provision of PPE, including visors.”

Rachel Robinson, Shropshire Council’s director of public health, said:-

“The health and safety of our communities is our absolute key priority.

“We are aware of the cases of COVID-19 at ABP Foods and are working with Public Health England to support the company. A rapid response is providing vital information to help minimise the further spread of the virus in Shropshire.

“At this time, we would also like to remind everyone to follow the current Government guidance on social distancing, minimising their social interaction with other people, maintaining good hand hygiene by washing hands regularly for at least 20 seconds, and covering mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing. Adhering to this advice is the best protection against the virus. Please stay safe, be responsible and together we can reduce the spread of this coronavirus.”

It is everyone’s responsibility to try to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, so please continue to follow the Government guidelines. Read more on what you should do online.

Further information

For more information contact

ABP Foods – hannah.cambridge@fhflondon.co.uk

PHE – cam.morgan@phe.gov.uk

Shropshire Council – communications@shropshire.gov.uk

  1. *ABP Foods put a range of health protection measures in place from the start of the pandemic, including:
  • COVID-19 response teams established at each site since the end of February
  • Detailed risk assessments regularly reviewed
  • Increased frequency of multi-lingual briefings to all staff
  • Employees are instructed not to come to work if they have symptoms of COVID-19
  • Extensive temperature screening taken each morning before staff entry on-site
  • Elimination of non-essential movement across sites
  • Staggered breaks and lunches with physical distancing implemented
  • Additional canteen capacity to facilitate social distancing.
  • Additional and enhanced cleaning and disinfection of contact surfaces and communal areas
  • Changes implemented to workstations, where feasible, to facilitate physical distancing
  • Installation of Perspex screens at workstations where appropriate.
  • Provision of PPE including visors for all appropriate staff.
  • Multi-lingual COVID-19 signage and notices across all plants
  • Administration and office staff working remotely where possible
  • Enhanced protocols with respect to inbound animal transport
  • Enhanced outbound protocols for product dispatch
  • All non-essential site visits cancelled
  • Immediate internal contact-tracing process implemented should any employee display Covid-19 symptoms.
  1. The risk of contracting novel coronavirus (COVID-19) through the UK food chain is very low. There is currently no evidence to suggest transmission occurs through the foodborne route, therefore people are very unlikely to catch COVID-19 from food.
  1. Public Health England (PHE) exists to protect and improve the nation’s health and wellbeing and reduce health inequalities. We do this through world-leading science, knowledge and intelligence, advocacy, partnerships and the delivery of specialist public health services. We are an executive agency of the Department of Health and Social Care, and a distinct delivery organisation with operational autonomy. We provide the Government, local government, the NHS, Parliament, industry and the public with evidence-based professional, scientific and delivery expertise and support.

Website: www.gov.uk /phe   Facebook: PublicHealthEngland

Follow us on Twitter @PHE_UK   @PHE_WestMids

  1. PHE Midlands would like to remind people about the guidance for self-isolation.

Self-isolate if:

  • you have any symptoms of coronavirus (a high temperature, a new, continuous cough, or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste)
  • you’re waiting for a coronavirus test result
  • you’ve tested positive for coronavirus – this means you have coronavirus
  • you live with someone who has symptoms, is waiting for a test result or has tested positive. 

If you’re self-isolating, you and anyone you live with must not leave your home:

  • do not go to work, school or public places – work from home if you can
  • do not go on public transport or use taxis
  • do not go out to get food and medicine – order it online or by phone, or ask someone to bring it to your home
  • do not have visitors in your home, including friends and family – except for people providing essential care
  • do not go out to exercise – exercise at home or in your garden, if you have one.
  1. Further information on self-isolation:

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/self-isolation-and-treatment/how-long-to-self-isolate/

  1. Information on getting a test if you suspect you have COVID-19:

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/testing-and-tracing/ask-for-a-test-to-check-if-you-have-coronavirus/

  1. Information on symptoms of COVID-19:

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

Keep informed and sign up to our daily coronavirus email updates

Shropshire Council wants to keep you as up to date and informed as possible. To help us do this, we have developed a coronavirus update that will be sent daily at 8pm via email to anyone who has signed up to our e-bulletins.

This update includes the day’s key Shropshire Council news, and some key news from our partners, relating to coronavirus-linked issues. Please click here to sign up for the updates.

Please do encourage your family and friends to sign up to the updates too. This will help us keep everyone up to date with the rapidly-evolving crisis.

The post Coronavirus: Response to cases of COVID-19 at a Shropshire food processing company appeared first on Shropshire Council Newsroom.

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