The main symptoms of coronavirus are:
a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
To protect others, do not go to places like a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital if you have any of these symptoms. Stay at home (self-isolate) and get a test.
A new 'Active at Home' booklet has been launched by Public Health England today to provide practical guidance for older adults on home-based activities to maintain their strength and balance during the Coronavirus outbreak.
The booklet is available to download here. Please encourage people in your community to download the booklet for themselves or share with family or friends that might find it useful.
Schools have been open for children of key workers and the most vulnerable children throughout the lockdown, however as mentioned earlier, the Government has announced early years settings, primary school reception, years 1, 2 and 6 can return from 1 June. Secondary school years 10 and 12 will have some face-to-face contact from 15 June.
For all children, and particularly young children, going back to school with new structures and routines in place is going to feel very different. Schools across Wiltshire are working very hard to prepare pupils for these changes and the council is providing guidance and support where it is needed.
The council’s Schools Team has created a new information guide for parents and carers to support them get their children ready to return. The booklet provides useful advice and tips including:
- Talk about the positives of going back to school
- Talk about all the things you have done during the lockdown period
- Think about ways for them to connect with their friends before going back
- For younger children explain when this is going to happen i.e. there are so many sleeps before going back
- Encourage open discussion
- Start to encourage the number of times your children wash their hands and practise maintaining social distancing
- Share school information with them to help them prepare for the changes
- Put a routine in place in the run up to going back – get your child to talk to you about what the routine will look like
The booklet can be accessed online – www.wiltshire.gov.uk/downloads/22821
Some Wiltshire residents of working age will pay less council tax due to a Government-funded scheme to support people from the impact of COVID-19.
This latest support package from the Government, which is being managed locally by Wiltshire Council, is aimed at working age families who already qualify for council tax reduction but still have to pay some council tax.
There are currently more than 16,000 working age households in receipt of a council tax reduction in Wiltshire, and around 11,000 of those will qualify for additional financial support under this scheme.
The scheme ensures that anyone who qualifies for council tax reduction will receive a further reduction of £150 in addition to their current council tax benefit. The scheme will not put accounts in credit, so those already in receipt of a 100% reduction will not be affected.
It also applies to those who are successful in claiming council tax reduction for the first time who may need some short-term support, before they return to work.
COVID-19 has left some people struggling financially and this extra money will provide support and hopefully ease the pressure for those who are already in a particularly vulnerable situation.
Qualifying households will shortly be sent a new council tax bill for 2020/21 by Wiltshire Council confirming they have been awarded a further reduction.
If anyone has any questions they should call 0300 456 0109 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Following recent changes to Government guidance, Wiltshire Council run street markets will be open from Tuesday 2 June with stallholders now able to sell their full range of goods.
Social distancing will be in place at each of the markets, and the public are strongly urged to take notice of the signage at each site and ensure they do everything they can to adhere to the measures and keep at least two meters apart from each other and the stallholders at all times.
To keep stallholders and the public as safe as possible a socially distancing queuing system will be in place at each market for each stall. Stallholders will be regularly using hand sanitiser, and cleaning where appropriate, and people are also encouraged to pay via contactless where they can and when it’s available, and should not unnecessarily pick up items and put them back.
A number of stall holders have laid their stalls out differently to have a dedicated entrance and exit and operate a one way system and all have been advised to follow government guidelines around hygiene, regular hand washing and sanitising.
Council officers will be on site to manage set-up and ensure stalls are socially distanced, and arrangements are in place at each stall for a socially distanced queue system.
More information on opening times at each location including FAQs can be found at http://www.wiltshire.gov.uk/community-environment-street-markets.
Chippenham, Devizes, Royal Wootton Bassett and Salisbury markets are not Wiltshire Council-run so please check with the relevant councils to find out about their current arrangements:
The council will be reintroducing parking enforcement at all car parks, and on residential and on-street parking areas in the county from Monday 1 June. All parking permits and season tickets will also restart from this date, and parking wardens will enforce any parking contraventions.
On 25 March, the Government gave NHS and care workers free use of all council parking and this will continue until further notice. However, Wiltshire Council went one step further and suspended all parking charges, including in residential areas, from the 27 March which was to be reconsidered when the Government issued new guidance.
As the Government looks to return to a new normal, it is important we reintroduce parking charges and enforcement to ensure the highways and parking networks are working effectively.
COVID-19 has had a significant impact on the council’s budget, particularly in terms of lost income, and reinstating car parking charges will help us to continue to support our residents and businesses through these challenging times.
People using car parks should note the following guidance to help keep staff and residents safe and ensure social distancing:
- Cash will be accepted (change not given) at all car parks, but please pay using a digital permit or contactless if you can. Not all car parks accept contactless payments, but all accept digital permits.
- Signage will be in place to let people know of the charges and also to remind people to ensure social distancing when using machines or walking in car parks.
- Where possible, people should park leaving one space or more between cars to aid social distancing. This may not always be possible, but it may be achievable in quieter car parks.
- NHS workers and care workers must place supporting evidence in their windscreen when parking to be eligible for free stays, such as photocopies of work passes with sensitive information removed, or a letter of evidence on headed paper from their employer.
All valid parking permits and season tickets will be restarted from Monday 1 June with the other charges – with the nine weeks of the suspension period automatically added on to the end of parking permits and season tickets. For example, if a person has a parking permit or season ticket that expires on 31 August, that permit or season ticket will now automatically be extended to end on 2 October, nine weeks later. People do not need to contact the council for this extension; it will happen automatically.
Refunds can be given to people who no longer need extended season tickets – contact email@example.com for more information.
With the very dry and sunny weather conditions this weekend and forecast to continue, Public Health England has updated its Heatwave Plan for England taking into account COVID-19, to help people stay as safe as possible.
The heat can affect anyone, but some people run a greater risk of serious harm. Many of those who are at risk of harm from heat are also at greater risk of severe illness due to COVID-19 and may need to spend more time at home than they would usually. Others may need to stay at home because they are self-isolating or recovering from the infection.
We still have much to learn about how COVID-19 affects the body but both heat and COVID-19 infections put a strain on the heart, lungs and kidneys and are linked with inflammation in the body. As a result, people shielding or displaying COVID-19 symptoms are advised to take extra precautions.
For more information, visit www.nhs.uk/heatwave.
Those people on the extremely vulnerable shielded list that receive a Central Government food parcel are able to opt out of receiving further parcels should they wish.
Residents to whom this applies, are required to re-register at the Government website www.gov.uk/coronavirus-extremely-vulnerable. Once re-registered they need to click that they do not need support with food to prevent further parcels. Alternatively, they can call 0800 028 8327and follow the instructions.
Residents will need to have their NHS number to hand to complete the process.
An overview of the NHS test and trace service, including what happens if you test positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) or have had close contact with someone who has tested positive.
New Collection Days in June and July
According to the Wiltshire Council website
Market Lavington: Except The Spring, Grove Rd. (and turnings off it), Canada Rise, the north end of Parsonage Lane, Spin Hill, Ledge Hill, Broadway and Drove Lane & The Clays. Easterton except Eastcott Common
Household Waste and paid Garden Waste Collection: Friday June 12th and 26th, July 10th and 24th
Blue top Bins and black boxes Tuesday June 2nd, 16th and 30th, July 14th and 28th
The Spring, Grove Rd. (and turnings off it), Canada Rise, the north end of Parsonage Lane, Spin Hill, Ledge Hill, Broadway and Drove Lane & The Clays. Eastcott Common
Blue top Bins and black boxes Tuesday June 9th and 23rd, July 7th and 21st
Household Waste and paid Garden Waste Collection Friday June 12th and 26th, July 10th and 24th
Blue top Bins and black boxes Tuesday June 9th and 23rd, July 7th and 21st
Household Waste and paid Garden Waste Collection Wednesday June 10th and 24th, July 8th and 22nd
The lockdown restrictions in place over the last couple of months has meant several business premises have been forced to close which means water within the building plumbing systems will have been left stagnant. This can cause the water quality to deteriorate within the plumbing system in a number of ways:
- Warming of water
- Growth of micro-organisms (e.g. bacteria, legionella)
- Increased leaching of metals found in plumbing (could cause discolouration)
- Taste and odour from prolonged contact with some plumbing materials
We would like to bring to your attention the steps that should be taken to remove any stagnant water and renew your water supply before your workforce return to work and use the water.
- Identify all items that use water within the building (taps, showers, appliances, toilets, urinals, drinks machines, bathrooms, etc) and any water storage (tanks and cisterns). Anything storing water should be emptied and refilled first.
- Then gently flush all cold-water outlets individually starting with the tap nearest to where the water enters the building and move systematically to the most distant outlet including flushing toilets. Flush until the water is cool to the touch or the same temperature as the water closest to where it enters the building.
- Minimise the potential of creating aerosols by flushing gently, removing aerators, shower heads and any other tap inserts or attachments. Close toilet seat lids before flushing.
- If there are any outlets that require servicing or cleaning by an external contractor (e.g. coffee machines, soft drinks machines) switch off the supply to them and do not use until a contractor can visit.
- Ensure appliances are flushed and internal filters and softeners are checked to ensure they are flushed and working correctly as outlined in manufacturer’s instructions.
- Once the cold water has flushed through, repeat the process with the hot water outlets.
If you have a water safety plan for the premises, this should include how to return the building water system to normal following prolonged low/no use.
Complex systems involving chemical dosing systems (eg swimming pools and spa pools) please enlist the services of a professional to service the system and return to normal operation.
For more information please see the link below:
Water UK - Recovering drinking water supplies in buildings and networks after prolonged inactivity guidance document
Health and Safety Executive (HSE) – Legionella and Legionnaires’ disease
If you have any specific concerns or queries regarding your water quality, please reply to this email with your question.
If you have any other enquiries regarding billing or metering, please contact your water retailer who provide your bill.
Wessex Water Regulations Team
Household recycling centres to reopen with postcode entry system All of Wiltshire's household recycling centres (HRCs), bar Stanton St Quintin, will reopen on Monday 18 May with an easy to use postcode entry system to help limit the number of people on site at any time and ensure social distancing. Stanton St Quintin HRC will remain closed because parking spaces on site have been significantly reduced and because of the already difficult traffic management issues at the site. This will be kept under review and in the meantime people should use the Purton, Melksham or Lower Compton sites.
People should only visit HRCs on the days that correspond to the first part of their postcode. For example, if your postcode starts in BA12, you can only visit the sites on Monday 18 May, Wednesday 20 May etc - see table.
You can visit any Wiltshire site you choose, so while you are limited by the days you can attend, you can attend any Wiltshire household recycling centre on these days – though please be sure to check the latest opening times before you set off, as many sites will need to operate very differently to previous arrangements. You may be asked to provide a proof of address in order to use the household recycling centre, so please bring it with you.
To keep staff and residents safe, there are a significant number of changes in place to ensure social distancing
can be maintained at all HRCs, including:
Visitors must keep at least two metres from others at all times. One person per car. No entry for trailers or large vans over 3.5 tonnes. Vehicles allowed on site on a ‘one in, one out’ basis. No pedestrian access. HRCs cannot accept soil, rubble, plasterboard, textiles or asbestos during this initial reopening phase.
Don’t bring recyclable materials that can be collected through the council’s kerbside recycling collection
People living in Wiltshire are being
advised not to let worries about coronavirus stop them asking for medical help
for themselves or their children if they become ill, have a serious accident or
have a concern about their health. They are also being warned that not seeking
medical help for symptoms that could be the early warning signs of serious
conditions such as cancer could be putting lives at risk.
“While it may seem that coronavirus has put
a stop to most aspects of everyday life, the one thing it hasn’t stopped is
what’s going on inside our bodies,” she says. “Now more than ever, we need to
pay attention to anything that isn’t normal and seek help early on. “For example, if you notice blood when
going to the toilet, or if you’ve found a lump that wasn’t there previously, or
if you’ve just noticed something odd that is causing you to worry, you need to
speak to your GP. “Should the symptom be the early warning
sign of something serious like cancer, that delay in seeking help could have
serious implications for how successful possible treatments may be.” Although GP practices across the region
have adopted new ways of working, such as establishing isolated clinics for
potential coronavirus patients, the practices themselves are still open to
offer care, treatment, advice and peace-of-mind.
The same also goes for emergency departments at the three hospitals in Bath, Swindon and Salisbury, all of which continue to be open 24 hours a day for people with a genuine and life-threatening health concern. Additionally, all healthcare facilities in the region, as well as those elsewhere in the country, have put in place stringent infection control measures to ensure that the risk of contracting coronavirus while visiting a hospital or GP surgery remains low.
· Details of which services continue to open, as well as how to get in contact, can be found online by visiting www.bswccg.nhs.uk
· Further information on how to stay well throughout the coronavirus outbreak can be found at www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19.
Get the latest advice from Wiltshire Council here http://www.wiltshire.gov.uk/public-health-coronavirus
A network of 15 centres has been created across the South West for people who need help for urgent and emergency dental health conditions including severe pain and infections.
To read more go to NHS England