Last week’s news from around the Council.
- Staffordshire History Festival
September sees the start of the annual Staffordshire History Festival, a two-month celebration of local history and cultural heritage in Staffordshire and beyond. This year’s festival is taking place online and a virtual programme of informative posts, quizzes, videos, live online events, crafts and activities for children and families will be posted on Facebook during the festival.
There will be four focused history days too on Thursdays in September and October including:
- The Battle of Britain, for the 80th anniversary – Thursday 17 September 2020.
- The Staffordshire Hoard – Thursday 1 October 2020.
- The Home Front and the 1940s house in the Second World War – Thursday 15 October 2020.
- Staffordshire History, Heritage and Legends – Thursday 29 October 2020.
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- Helping people back into employment webinar
If you need help to get back into work, take part in our free online webinar on Friday 11 September 2020 from 10.30am to midday and find out what support is available from South Staffs Work Clubs. Click here to register.
- Online behaviour workshops
Click here for the latest information regarding online behaviour workshops in September in South Staffordshire run by the Family Support Service by SCTSP (Sickle Cell and Thalassaemia Support Project) in partnership with Staffordshire County Council.
- Video showcases new play area
The new outdoor play area at Baggeridge Country Park is proving a huge success with youngsters. Take a look at the new facilities by watching a short video created by the park and leading playground equipment supplier KOMPAN – click here to view.
- Leisure centre update
- Schools returned this week and the Council’s four leisure centres in Cheslyn Hay, Codsall, Penkridge and Wombourne have adjusted their classes/timetables and classes have now returned to their normal studios. This has resulted in class capacities being slightly reduced.
- After the successful re-opening of the swimming pool at Wombourne Leisure Centre, the swimming programme has increased to introduce additional evening swims and family swims. Staff have all undergone training and this will be rolled out to more staff. We hope to reopen the swimming pools in the other Leisure Centres over the coming weeks and months as more staff undergo training and once refurbishment and maintenance work is completed at the swimming pools at Cheslyn Hay and Penkridge Leisure Centres.
- We hope that swimming lessons will return at the end of September and it would be appreciated if all Swim Academy members would complete a short survey to help us prepare for your return – click here for the survey.
- Please support the Teenage Cancer Trust
Many of you may know Sam Paign, who is one of the class instructors at Wombourne Leisure Centre. Sam and other members from the Black Country Triathletes will be taking part in Outlaw X, a 70.3 mile triathlon on Sunday 27 September 2020 to raise funds for the Teenager Cancer Trust. The charity is a cause close to Sam’s heart because last November his son, Morgan, was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia. Morgan is now in the maintenance phase of his treatment, which all being well will last until April 2023. Good luck Sam, Claire, Carolyn, Louise and Matt in the triathlon. They would very much appreciate the support of donations for this event so if you would like to donate, click here.
- Win a family forest staycation
Good causes in South Staffordshire need your support and the South Staffordshire Community Lottery is raising funds to help the district recover from the impact of COVID-19. One way you can help is by buying a lottery ticket in this weekly Community Lottery and 60p from every £1 ticket will support local good causes and charities. As well as supporting a good cause you might even win a cash prize ranging from £25 up to a jackpot of £25,000. And this week, the prize for the next super draw in October has been revealed! Buy a lottery ticket and you could win a family forest staycation voucher redeemable with Forest Holidays. This amazing prize is worth £500 and the draw takes place on Saturday 31 October 2020 at 8pm. To buy a lottery ticket, simply register on the website www.southstaffslottery.co.uk or telephone 01902 213777.
- COVID-19 essential information
- Wash hands, cover face, make space
Please remember the ‘One metre plus’ social distancing rule. This means that where it is not possible for people to stay two metres apart, they should stay one metre apart and take additional measures to protect themselves such as wearing a face covering, increased use of hand sanitiser, sitting side by side rather than face to face, or meeting outdoors to reduce the risk of transmission.
- Face coverings – In England, you must wear a face covering by law in a number of indoor settings – click here for more information. Please remember that some people are exempt from wearing a face covering so in settings where face coverings are required, there may be people who are not able to wear a face covering. Please be mindful and respectful of such circumstances. The reasons for this may not be visible to others. Always #BeKind.
- NHS test and trace – click here to find out more.
If you develop symptoms, get a test as soon as possible. Do not wait. To get a test, you will need to apply online on www.gov.uk or call 119. Depending on how many days have passed since you started to develop symptoms, you will either take a home test or be tested at a test site. The test involves taking a swab of the inside of your nose and the back of your throat, using a long cotton bud.
The NHS test and trace service is a vital tool and helps control the spread of coronavirus. In England, you will be contacted by the service if you test positive for COVID-19 and you will be asked where you’ve been recently and who you have been in close contact with. This will help the NHS contact anyone who may have caught the virus from you. All information you provide is confidential and no one who is contacted will be told your identity. Anyone you’ve been in close contact with will be told to stay at home (self-isolate) for 14 days. This is because it can take up to 14 days for coronavirus symptoms to appear.
Remember – the NHS test and trace service will not ask you for bank details or payments, ask for details of any social media accounts, ask you to set up a password or PIN number over the phone, or ask you to call a premium rate number, such as those starting 09 or 087.
- Coronavirus support and advice for businesses
- Workplace action cards are now available from Public Health England, which provide instructions to anyone responsible for a business or organisation on what to do in the event of one or more confirmed cases of COVID-19 in your organisation. Click here for more information.
These quick reference guides provide key steps to help you quickly identify, report and respond to any potential COVID-19 outbreak within your local community. The action cards have been developed to cover a range of businesses and organisations to provide specific advice on the issues each type of organisation may face now lockdown restrictions have been eased.
The range of action cards includes:
- Small and large gathering action cards for entertainment and holiday resorts, places of worship and tourist attractions.
- Residential workplace action cards for campsites and caravan parks, domestic abuse refuges, homelessness accommodation, and hotels and other guest accommodation.
- Workplace action cards – including, but not limited to, arts venues, cinemas, food and drink establishments, food processing, construction and outdoor work, shops, and hair and beauty.
NEW – This week, a second tranche of action cards was released for the following settings:
- Education action cards for early years, primary, secondary and special schools, alternative provision for schools, residential settings in education, further education and higher education.
- Commercial workplace action cards for contact centres, offices and operations rooms.
- Industrial workplace action cards for working in factories, plants, warehouses and waste management and storage sites and laboratory and research facilities.
- Food and drink action cards for food delivery, food to go and mobile catering, food truck, kiosks, stands and open-air markets, and food contract catering.
- Institutional action cards for approved premises, armed forces and defence, detention and immigration removal centres and youth detention centres.
- Small and large gathering action cards for business event venues, community activities and other hobby clubs, children’s community activities, holiday clubs, after school clubs, tuition and other out of school provision for children, libraries, grassroots sports, gyms/leisure facilities, and sports grounds and venues.
- Travel action cards for airports, seaports, stations and terminals, harbours and marinas, ships, ferries, aircrafts and other vessels, taxis and hire cars, trains, trams, tubes, buses and coaches.
- Pavement licence guidance
Pubs, bars and restaurants can now apply for a temporary licence to place tables and chairs on the highway to extend their outdoor space. The licences are being introduced to help businesses with social distancing. For more information, visit: www.sstaffs.gov.uk/licensing/pavement-licence.cfm
- Funding still available – Staffordshire Warm Homes Fund
It’s never too early to prepare for winter and South Staffordshire Council is urging residents to register for the Staffordshire Warm Homes Fund that could save them money on their heating bills. The funding scheme is aimed at residents who are struggling with their heating bills and using expensive electric heaters and open fires. Ten households in South Staffordshire have already benefited from the scheme, which allows residents to switch to gas central heating and funds first time gas connections and the installation of central heating and radiators. Click here for more information or visit www.staffordshirewarmerhomes.co.uk.
- This week’s Council Committee/Panel meetings
- Full Council – Tuesday 8 September – 7pm – virtual meeting via Teams.
- Asset Scrutiny Panel – Wednesday 9 September – 2pm – virtual meeting via Teams
Members of the public can virtually attend both meetings via Microsoft Teams – links can be found in the news section on the Council’s website at www.sstaffs.gov.uk.
Everyone is encouraged to submit news items, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org