Parish Council

Information – Coronavirus

06.01.21 – UPDATE

On 04.01.21 the Government confirmed a national lockdown in England.

This means you must stay at home.

You may only leave home to:

  • shop for basic necessities, for you or a vulnerable person
  • go to work if you cannot reasonably do so from home,
    exercise with your household (or support bubble) or one other person, this should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area
  • meet your support bubble or childcare bubble where necessary, but only if you are legally permitted to form one
  • seek medical assistance or avoid injury, illness or risk of harm (including domestic abuse)
  • attend education or childcare – for those eligible

We must all play our part.

Stay home and protect your loved ones and your borough.

You can find full information on what lockdown means for you on GOV.UK.

21.12.20 – UPDATE

See map for cases in your area …

Interactive Map | Coronavirus in the UK (data.gov.uk)

Official UK Coronavirus Dashboard

Official Coronavirus (COVID-19) disease situation dashboard with latest data in the UK.

coronavirus.data.gov.uk

 

Bracknell Forest residents must stay at home and stick to new tier 4 restrictions from Sunday, 20 December and must not form Christmas bubbles.

New rules were announced by the Government today (Saturday, 19 December), which places the borough in tier 4 from midnight tonight

Residents must stay at home from 00.01am on Sunday, apart from limited exemptions set out in law. People must work from home but can travel to work if this is not possible, for example in construction or manufacturing.

In addition to the tier 3 restrictions introduced earlier this week, non-essential retail, indoor entertainment, indoor gyms and leisure facilities, and personal care services (like hairdressers and beauty salons) must close.

As such, Bracknell Leisure Centre will be closed from tomorrow and Coral Reef will remain closed. Downshire Golf Course will be open for use of the green only and in line with household mixing/outdoor exercise rules. Libraries will be closed to reduce the risk of any spread but online services will remain open.

The borough’s parks and open spaces will remain open for exercise. Residents should only exercise locally with their own household/support bubble. However, you can meet outside in a public place with one other person.

At The Look Out, the play area will remain bookable and the coffee shop will remain open for takeaways only. Swinley Bike Hub and Go Ape are closed. Lapland UK will also be closed.

The Household Waste and Recycling Centre at Longshot Lane will also remain open for bookings as usual.

You must only travel for work, education or other legally permitted reasons. If you must travel you should stay local and reduce the number of journeys you make. You must not leave a tier 4 area or stay overnight away from home. Residents from tier 1-3 should not enter tier 4 areas (this includes Swinley Forest in Bracknell Forest). Residents cannot travel abroad unless an exemption applies.

Communal worship can continue to take place in tier 4 but you should not interact with anyone outside your household/support bubble.  

Residents in Bracknell Forest must not form or join a Christmas bubble. The rules previously outlined for 23-27 December no longer apply – residents can celebrate Christmas with their household/support bubble only.

Anyone who does leave their home should follow the hands, face, space rules. 

 

18.12.20 – UPDATE

Bracknell Forest placed in tier 3 ‘Very High’

Due to a significant rise in the number of positive COVID-19 cases within the borough, Bracknell Forest has been placed in tier 3 ‘very high’ risk.

Since the borough entered tier 2 just two weeks ago, the rate has risen from 87.3 per 100,000 to 222 per 100,000.

Tier 3 restrictions will come into force at 00:01am on Saturday, 19 December.

From Saturday residents will face restrictions including:

  • no mixing of households indoors, or in most outdoor places including private gardens, apart from support bubbles. Meetings in groups of up to 6 can take place in some public outdoor places such as parks and public gardens
  • entertainment venues will be closed
  • pubs and restaurants will be closed except for takeaways and deliveries
  • group exercise activities and indoor sports should not take place unless with your household
  • avoid travelling out of the area and reduce the number of journeys
  • no overnight stays except within household or support bubbles

More information can be found on the council’s website.

It is a legal requirement to self-isolate if you test positive for COVID-19.

The law, which came into effect in September, also applies to people who have been identified as a close contact of someone who has tested positive and has been asked to self-isolate.

Self-isolation means you must not leave your home.

  • Don’t go to work, school or public places – work from home if you can
  • Don’t go on public transport or use taxis
  • Don’t go out to get food and medicine – order it online or by phone, or ask someone to bring it to your home
  • Don’t have visitors in your home, including friends and family – except for people providing essential care
  • Don’t go out to exercise – exercise at home or in your garden, if you have one

If you are self-isolating or have tested positive for COVID-19 you must not join a Christmas bubble. 

The safest way to celebrate Christmas this year is at home with your own household. However, under current rules, residents can choose to form a Christmas bubble between 23 and 27 December only.

Christmas bubble rules and guidance:

  • One fixed Christmas bubble of only 3 households for the 5 days of Christmas.
  • You can only be in one Christmas bubble and cannot change that bubble
  • Your Christmas bubble should be kept as small as possible
  • If you are in a support or childcare bubble this counts as one household
  • You can meet in each other’s houses, places of worship or public parks but not in pubs, restaurants or entertainment venues
  • Students returning from university become part of their home household
  • If necessary you can travel between tiers and stay overnight
  • Children of separated parents can be part of each parent’s household
  • Anyone who has symptoms, is self-isolating or has tested positive must not join a Christmas bubble.

Christmas bubbles only apply from 23-27 December they do not cover New Year.

Rates of COVID-19 are increasing locally. Residents are reminded that they do not have to form a Christmas bubble. Think twice before potentially putting older relatives and more vulnerable loved ones at risk this festive season.

16.12.20 – UPDATE

Bracknell Forest Council launches COVID Winter Grant
The COVID-19 pandemic has taken its toll not only on the health but also on the finances of many households. Bracknell Forest Council has launched further support as part of the Government’s COVID Winter Grant Scheme. Its aim is to help residents who have been affected financially by the pandemic and are experiencing hardship.

With many furloughed, working reduced hours or having lost their jobs, more families are finding themselves in hardship for the first time. Although this may be a short-term situation, the council is offering assistance to these families to prevent financial challenges getting worse. The grant can help towards costs associated with food and utility bills to help Bracknell Forest families stay warm and well fed over the winter period.

Families that have already been identified as being eligible for assistance will be contacted through schools and council service teams over the next couple of weeks. However, other families experiencing short-term hardship due to COVID over the winter months, are invited to complete an online form to apply for help, which can be found at on the council’s website.

Cllr Paul Bettison OBE, Leader of the Council, said: “We know that many people have been finding things financially hard this year and for many hardworking families this is the first time they have found themselves needing our support. We urge them to come forward and apply for help as early as possible to avoid longer term hardship. We are looking to support those who are experiencing financial hardship as a result of the pandemic. This support is not only available to those in receipt of benefits, but those who have seen reductions to their employment hours, have been furloughed or lost their jobs may also be eligible.

“The simple form is available on our website and we are able to offer help to anyone requiring assistance with completing it. We do not want to see any families in our borough struggling to provide food for their family or to heat their homes this winter. Help is available and it’s available now.”

The grant is also providing funds to ensure children who qualify for free school meals or the pupil premium will receive vouchers for food over both the Christmas and February school holidays.

For those who are experiencing or facing financial hardship, the Money Advice Service Navigator tool offers free advice and can be found by visiting www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk

Information about who is eligible for assistance through the COVID Winter Grant and how to apply is available on our website COVID Winter Grant Scheme | Bracknell Forest Council (bracknell-forest.gov.uk)

 

14.12.2020 – UPDATE

As of Monday, 14 December, the self-isolation period of contacts of people who have a confirmed case of COVID-19 will be shortened from 14 days to 10 days across the UK.

Anyone who has been self-isolating for 10 days or more will be able to end their quarantine on Monday.  People returning from countries which are not on the travel corridor list should self-isolate for 10 days instead of 14.

If you’re asked to self-isolate you must comply to protect others.

Full guidance is available on the GOV.UK website.

04.12.2020 – UPDATE

COVID-19 ambassadors to help protect our borough

Bracknell Forest Council has recruited a team of COVID-19 ambassadors to help reduce the spread of the virus in the borough over the next few months.

This new role has been created to help control infection rates in Bracknell Forest, with the ambassadors providing helpful support and guidance to the public. Based mainly in Bracknell town centre, they will be visiting other popular locations as and when required.

They will offer a wide range of COVID support services such as:
• signposting members of the public and businesses to government guidance
• cleaning touch points
• directing pedestrians and managing pedestrian one-way systems
• monitoring effectiveness of outdoor COVID- 19 signage
• guiding pedestrians through exit and entry points
• checking and promoting visibility of COVID-19 secure messaging
• advising businesses on one-way systems and social distancing in queues
• helping to prevent mixing between groups outside eating and drinking establishments
• encouraging social distancing in busy night-life areas
• making enforcement officers aware of any issues.

The new ambassadors are now in position, ready to help manage the move from the national restrictions to tier 2 ‘high’ risk and help keep people safe in the run up to Christmas.

Cllr Paul Bettison OBE, Chairman of the Local Outbreak Engagement Board said: “I am very proud of the way that Bracknell Forest has responded to the COVID-19 pandemic. The majority of our residents have complied with the changing rules and we have managed to keep our rates of infections relatively low. However, as we enter winter we must refocus and work hard to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe.

“These COVID ambassadors will help to guide the public to ensure that we follow the rules and protect our borough. They’re also there to provide help, so if you want advice on COVID-19 and how to keep yourself safe please do ask them.”

26.11.2020 – UPDATE

News release

Bracknell Forest placed in tier 2 ‘high’ risk

As the country comes out of national restrictions and returns to the regional tier system, residents in Bracknell Forest are once again being called upon to play their part in helping to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

From December 2, the borough will be rated as tier 2 ‘high’ risk and so residents will need to follow the rules for that tier from Wednesday.

Following national restrictions, the rate of transmission rate of COVID-19 in Bracknell Forest has reduced to 87.3 per 100,000.  Local transmission is now much lower than the South East and national average, but we have to remain vigilant to ensure our rates don’t return to the levels of transmission we were experiencing prior to lockdown.

From Wednesday residents will be able to:

  • Meet in groups of up to six outdoors (no indoor meetings should take place)
  • Visit entertainment venues
  • Visit personal care businesses like hairdressers and beauty salons
  • Visit gyms and leisure facilities
  • Visit pubs and restaurants that are serving food.
  • Visit essential and non-essential shops
  • Visit places of worship

Residents must only socialise indoors with people who they live with or who are in their support bubble (whether at home or at indoor venues).

Residents should continue to work from home where possible and should avoid travelling between tiers unless absolutely necessary. Travel into tier 3 areas should be avoided other than where necessary (for work, education, youth services, for medical treatment or for caring responsibilities).

Cllr Paul Bettison OBE, Leader of Bracknell Forest Council and Chairman of the Local Outbreak Engagement Board, said: “The recent national restrictions have seen a drop in cases in Bracknell Forest and so I’d like to thank residents for consistently playing their part in reducing the spread of the virus and doing all they can to keep their loved ones safe.

“Despite our current rate being lower than the regional and national average and one of the lowest in Berkshire, we have been placed in tier 2 ‘high’ risk by the Government.

“I know that this will be frustrating for many of our residents and we understand that frustration. Unfortunately, councils have not been involved in discussions around which tier they have been placed in by Government. It is likely we have been placed in this tier due to our geographical proximity to places with much higher transmission rates than our current 87.3 per 100,000 population.

“Despite the frustration we all have a duty to be diligent in protecting ourselves, our families and our friends and our borough by sticking to the rules and keeping up good health and hygiene practices, which have shown to have had a positive impact locally in recent weeks.

“While the prospect of a vaccine is getting ever closer it is still essential that people get tested if they have symptoms and isolate if they have been in contact with anyone who has tested positive.

“The hands, face, space message is still key, and this had now been enhanced with the addition of ventilate and isolate.  It has been recognised that the majority of the spread is through household transmission and keeping homes well ventilated can help reduce this spread.

“The reopening of shops before the festive period is great news, however we urge people to be mindful of social distancing and respectful of other shoppers.  We all want to enjoy this time and by following the advice we can work together to stay safe.”

To help reduce the spread it is important for all residents to follow the hands, face space, ventilate and isolate rules:

  • hands – wash your hands regularly and for 20 seconds
  • face – wear a face covering in indoor settings where social distancing may be difficult, and where you will come into contact with people you do not normally meet
  • space – stay two metres apart from people you do not live with where possible, or one metre with extra precautions in place (such as wearing face coverings or increasing ventilation indoors)
  • ventilate – open windows to maintain a flow of fresh air indoors
  • isolate – if you have symptoms or have been in close contact with somebody who has tested positive, isolate and arrange for a test

It is also important to follow the rule of six when outside.

When seeing friends and family you do not live with (or who are not part of your support bubble), you must only meet outdoors and in a group of no more than six. In England, this limit of six includes children of any age.

Find out more about the tier system on GOV.UK

You can find the latest statistics for Bracknell Forest at: www.berkshirepublichealth.co.uk/covid-19-dashboard

Notes:

Tier placement is directed by the Government based on:

  • the number of cases locally.
  • the rate at which cases are rising or falling.
  • the proportion of positive cases detected from all tests taken.
  • the pressure on the NHS.

Other considerations such as the broader economic and practical implications like movement between areas are also taken into account.  Tier allocation is not subject to local negotiation.

10.11.2020 – UPDATE

COVID – Healthwatch – Nov 2020

05.11.2020 – UPDATE

Bracknell Forest Council launches UK’s first local COVID-19 Dashboard

New one-stop shop for lockdown rules and local data across Berkshire

As England enters a second lockdown, Bracknell Forest Council has announced the launch of a COVID-19 Dashboard designed to provide residents with comprehensive guidance on the national restrictions that will remain in place until Wednesday, 2 December. Created to meet the needs of the local community, the website, www.berkshirepublichealth.co.uk, went live today and is the first of its kind in the UK.

As well as critical national lockdown information, the site provides users with specific data on COVID-19 for each of Berkshire’s six local authority areas, including:

    • Daily new case numbers and total cases
    • Daily number of cases in graph format since the start of the pandemic in March
    • Daily new cases for England and total cases for England since records began
    • Weekly death rate and location (care home, at home, hospital, etc.)
    • Data for 111 and 999 calls triaged for people with suspected Covid-19 symptoms plus the number of daily online assessments

 

03.11.2020 – UPDATE

NEW national restrictions from 5th November – 2nd December  For further details click here

WPC will be closing their halls during this period, all grass roots sport has been suspended until 2nd December and tennis courts have been closed.

07.10.2020 – UPDATE

NEWS RELEASE – BFC self-isolation payment scheme – read here

23.09.2020 – UPDATE

Following the updated government guidance, from Thursday 24th September, the Parish office will be closed to members of the public and office staff will return to working from home.  All other services will continue and the office can be contacted during opening hours 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. either by calling 01344 885110 or emailing info@winkfieldparishcouncil.gov.uk

07.09.2020 – UPDATE – PLEASE NOTE … due to COVID our Hall capacities are as follows:

  • Martins Heron, Heron Hall  – 30
  • Martins Heron, Dorothy Hayes Room – 9
  • Carnation Hall, Main Hall – 25
  • Carnation Hall, Lounge  – 6

28.08.2020 – UPDATE – From Tuesday 1st September, the office will officially re-open.

03.08.2020 – UPDATE – Winkfield Parish Council play areas are now ALL OPEN

Temporary signage giving advice on how to safely use the equipment has been installed and we would ask all visitors to make themselves aware of the guidelines.  Please note that maximum numbers allowed differ from site to site.  More permanent signage will be installed over the next week.

Locks Ride is open but the splash pad and cabin remain closed.

All sites will be monitored and if activities pose increased risks then areas may be re-closed to ensure public safety.

Thank you for your patience and we hope that many residents will enjoy using the facilities again.

WPC Play Equipment poster (max 30)

 

03.07.2020 – UPDATE – Winkfield Parish Council play areas remain CLOSED

Following the recent changes to government guidelines, Winkfield Parish Council has taken the decision not to yet open its play areas at the following sites:

Allsmoor Field

Ascot Jubilee Recreation Ground

Blackmoor Playspace

Carnation Hall

Fernbank Playspace

King George V Recreation Ground

Locks Ride

Plans are currently being formulated to enable the re-opening of facilities when it is safe to do so based on the government advice: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-for-managing-playgrounds-and-outdoor-gyms/covid-19-guidance-for-managing-playgrounds-and-outdoor-gyms?fbclid=IwAR35YGCXbaETqaPm5E_bIyLIWI9uAdlvH77-bVuD6ESB3v2OrbNoHApisZY.

Until this time, all play areas remain closed. Further updates will be provided over the next few days detailing when sites will be able to re-open.

Bracknell Forest Council is planning to open a number of its play areas from 4th July and more information can be found at https://www.bracknell-forest.gov.uk/health-and-social-care/coronavirus-information-and-support/council-services/parks-and-countryside-service-updates

Whilst we understand this may be disappointing, the safety of our residents is paramount and must take priority.

01.06.2020 – UPDATE – Message from BFC and WPC

It’s great to see our residents out enjoying the sun however, PLEASE help us protect our green spaces during this time.

Over the bank holiday weekend many parks were badly littered, BBQs damaged wildlife and highways were blocked with cars parking irresponsibly.

If you visit one of our green spaces PLEASE ensure you:

  • Take your litter home and protect our wildlife.
  • Don’t park on the highway or car parks may be forced to re-close.
  • Never light BBQs or fires, you could be adding more strain to emergency services.
  • Abide by social distancing guidelines and do not congregate in big groups.

PLEASE protect our parks with your actions.

13.05.2020 – UPDATE – Following the announcement from the Prime Minister that people are now allowed to drive to take exercise and more than once a day, Winkfield Parish Council will be re-opening the car parks at the following sites from today (Wednesday 13th May):

  • Ascot Jubilee Recreation Ground
  • Locks Ride Recreation Ground
  • Asher Recreation Ground
  • King George V Recreation Ground

To support our car parks remaining open we ask that you take some simple steps, which include:

  • Only leave cars parked in a marked bay, where these are clearly marked
  • Please don’t queue in your car or circulate waiting for a space if the car park is full. If there is no space it is essential to travel to another site or try again later.
  • Social distancing must be applied during the walk and when getting into and out of your car. This includes keeping two metres away from others and keeping dogs on leads.
  • Please don’t use play areas, which remain closed according to government guidance.

We would ask that people do not rush out to visit our car parks which would put pressure on our facilities and make social distancing difficult.

14.04.2020 – UPDATE – In order for our sites to remain safe and accessible to all during this time, our grounds team will be carrying out essential maintenance over the next few weeks such as mowing and strimming.

To enable them to carry out their duties effectively, please ensure you follow the guidelines regarding social distancing – please do not approach staff. They will ensure that they remain at least 2 metres away from visitors to the sites at all times.

Our play areas remain closed and we would ask you not to use any benches to prevent spread of the virus.

30.03.2020 – UPDATE – The Bracknell Forest COVID-19 (coronavirus) community information pack is now available on the BFC website.  The direct link to this community information pack is www.bracknell-forest.gov.uk/sites/default/files/coronavirus-info-pack-bracknell-forest-council.pdf

24.03.2020 – UPDATE  -As per the Governments advice issued on 23.03.2020, all Winkfield Parish Council play areas (including our Tennis courts) are CLOSED with immediate effect.  Recreational areas will remain open for exercise purposes only.  Please follow the guidelines regarding social distancing at all times – link to Government advice https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

The Parish Office is now closed to the visiting members of the public following advice from Public Health England.  We can be contacted by email: info@winkfieldparishcouncil.gov.uk or on 01344 885110.  All mail is being collected from the WPC office on a regular basis.

All Parish Council meetings have been suspended for an initial period of 12 weeks.  This will be reviewed and amended if necessary following advice from Public Health England.

We have temporarily suspended all use of public buildings (Carnation Hall, Martins Heron & The Warren Community Centre, Locks Ride Pavilion & Cabin, Ascot Jubilee Pavilion) during the closure, so we ask that you do not visit these sites until they are re-opened.

The Community Café at Ascot Jubilee is cancelled until further notice.

All football matches at Locks Ride, Ascot Jubilee and King George V have been suspended until further notice.

We will keep the website updated with further information as it becomes available.

Community Volunteers

Healthwatch Bracknell are co-ordinating the recruitment of community response volunteers in the local area during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) emergency.

If you would like to volunteer please call 01344 266911 or visit their website www.healthwatchbracknellforest.co.uk

The scheme is being organised in partnership with Bracknell Forest Council and Involve.