Local Covid Alert Level - Medium

The Prime Minister has set out a three tiered system of local COVID Alert Levels in England. The levels will be set at medium, high, and very high. 

Under this scheme, our area is at a 'medium' alert level. This is for areas where national restrictions continue to be in place.

 


This means:

  • All businesses and venues can continue to operate, in a COVID-Secure manner, other than those that remain closed in law, such as nightclubs.
  • Certain businesses selling food or drink on their premises are required to close between 10pm and 5am.
  • Businesses and venues selling food for consumption off the premises can continue to do so after 10pm as long as this is through delivery service, click-and-collect or drive-thru.
  • Schools, universities and places of worship remain open
  • Weddings and funerals can go ahead with restrictions on the number of attendees
  • Organised indoor sport and exercise classes can continue to take place, provided the Rule of Six is followed
  • People must not meet in groups larger than 6, indoors or outdoors

For more information about the other alert levels, please visit the Government's website.

Regulations for all three local alert levels will be debated and voted on in the House of Commons on 13 October. Subject to that vote tomorrow, they will come into force on 14 October, subject to the approval of Parliament.

 

Please note

Although our offices are currently closed to the public due to Covid-19, we are still here to help.

Customer contact centre

Our customer contact centre is open from Monday - Friday 09:00 - 17:00.

You can reach us on the phone between 9am and 5pm weekdays on 01243 785166.

For more ways to get in touch, please visit our contact us page.

Update on latest government position

Update - 27 October 2020


You can find the latest official Government data on coronavirus on on the Government's website.

 

Prime Minister's statement on coronavirus

The Prime Minister made a statement on 12 October to the House of Commons on the response to the coronavirus pandemic. He set out a new three-tiered system of local Covid Alert Levels in England - set at medium, high, and very high. He also confirmed that the Government will expand its unprecedented economic support to assist those affected by these decisions; extending the Job Support Scheme to cover two-thirds of the wages of those in any business that is required to close.

The full text of the Prime Minister's statement is available on the Government's website.



Job Support Scheme expanded to firms required to close due to Coronavirus Restrictions

The Government has announced (9 October) that the Job Support Scheme (JSS) will be expanded to protect jobs and support businesses required to close their doors as a result of coronavirus restrictions.

Under the expansion, firms whose premises are legally required to shut for some period over winter as part of local or national restrictions will receive grants to pay the wages of staff who cannot work.

The Government will support eligible businesses by paying two thirds of each employees' salary (or 67%), up to a maximum of £2,100 a month. You can find the announcemt on the Government's website

 

Travel update

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office has updated its global advisory against 'all but essential' travel (8 October), exempting destinations that no longer pose an unacceptably high risk for British travellers. You can view this on the Government's website.

The guidance on travel corridors  has also been updated (22 October) to reflect changes to the list of countries and territories from where you can travel to England and may not have to self-isolate.



NHS Test & Trace app

The Government has launched its new NHS Test and Trace app across England and Wales. You can find out more on the NHS website.

Certain venues are now legally required to display NHS QR posters at their entry points so that customers who have downloaded the app can use their smartphones to easily check-in. This will help trace and stop the spread of coronavirus, allowing NHS Test and Trace to contact customers with public health advice should there be a COVID-19 outbreak.

The app does this, while protecting a user's anonymity. Nobody, including the Government, will know who or where a particular user is. Instead, someone's postcode district (the first part of a postcode) helps the app work out where the virus is spreading.

It is now mandatory for the following venues and businesses to collect customer details as part of the test and trace scheme:

  • hospitality, including pubs, bars, restaurants and cafés
  • tourism and leisure, including gyms, swimming pools, hotels, museums, cinemas, zoos and theme parks 
  • close contact services, including hairdressers, facilities provided by local authorities, including town halls and civic centres (for events), libraries and children's centres.

Further information can be found on our business advice and support page.

 

New package to support self-isolation

As you may know, the Government has announced a new package of support for those on low incomes who have been instructed to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace. The announcement can be found on the Government's website.  

Those who receive notification from this service from the 28 September who meet the following eligibility criteria will qualify for a support payment of £500. Those eligible will:

  • Have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test & Trace — the message from this service will include a unique reference number which must be provided on the application;
  • Be employed or self-employed;
  • Be unable to work from home and will lose income as a result; and
  • Be in receipt of at least one of the following benefits: Universal Credit, Working Tax Credit, Income Based Employment and Support Allowance, Income Based Job Seekers Allowance, Income Support, Housing Benefit and/or Pension Credit.

As a council, we will be processing applications and issuing these payments to those who are eligible. To check eligibility and to apply, please visit test and trace support payment page.

 

Shielding updates

For the latest shielding updates, please visit the Government's website.

 

COVID-secure businesses

Many businesses have reopened their doors and the government has a list of which businesses should be closed. . If you would like to report a business that is not following social distancing guidance as set out by the government, please report it to healthprotection@chichester.gov.uk along with:

  • your details (name, address, telephone number)
  • details of the business alleged to be trading in contravention to the regulations (name, address, contact details), and
  • details of when and how the business is/was operating
     

Stay alert

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

Do not leave home if you or anyone in your household has symptoms.

The Government is reminding everyone of three simple actions that we must all do to keep on protecting each other:

  • Wash hands: keep washing your hands regularly
  • Cover face: wear a face covering in enclosed spaces, and
  • Make space: stay at least two metres apart — or one metre with a face covering or other precautions.

 

Government support and guidance

Please always refer to the government coronavirus guidance and support. This includes:

  • protecting yourself and others from coronavirus, including guidance on social distancing
  • testing for coronavirus, including NHS Test and Trace
  • what you can and can't do during the coronavirus outbreak
  • what to do if you have symptoms or are at high risk
  • how to help stop the spread of coronavirus
  • help for vulnerable people
  • work, financial support and money
  • health and wellbeing guidance, and
  • advice and support for businesses and self-employed people, and much more.
Council messages, service status and meetings

Council messages


Coronavirus walk-through test site

In response to the current coronavirus pandemic, we are assisting the NHS Test and Trace service by providing them with a section of our Northgate car park in Chichester for a new walk-through coronavirus test site. This service will be available by appointment only.

We expect the site to be operational from the middle of October. The majority of the car park will remain open for commuters, residents and visitors as usual.

Anyone attending an appointment at a walk-through testing site will be provided with guidance on getting to and from the test site safely, including: adhering to social distancing; not travelling in a taxi or on public transport; wearing a face covering throughout (including travelling to and from the testing centre); and washing their hands thoroughly before leaving for their appointment. This approach has been agreed with expert clinical oversight.

Testing is proving an effective way to contain the virus and so this facility will play an important role in keeping our residents safe. Testing is available to anyone with coronavirus symptoms and can be booked by visiting  the NHS website or by calling 119.

Our priority is to work with our partners to respond to the current pandemic. Due to this, unfortunately the Sloe Fair will be unable to take place at Northgate car park this year. We are working closely with the organisers to make sure they maintain the right to hold the Sloe Fair in future years.

 

Public toilets

A quick reminder that all of our public toilets are open daily from 7am - 7.30pm and are regularly cleaned and checked throughout the day. Please remember to observe social distancing and hygiene measures when using these facilities. You can view a map of our public toilets on our parking pages.



Play Parks

Our play areas are now open once again for you to enjoy. We look forward to welcoming you back, but please make sure you follow the guidelines that are in place at each site for your own safety. You can find these on our play areas page..


Council services

Please click on the following link for an update on the status of all council services: Service status

 

Council meetings

Public meetings are now being streamed live online. You can find out more on our View council meetings page, which includes a link to access the webcasts.

If you wish to submit a question for a public meeting, please visit Speaking at Council and committee meetings

Our role

We are working closely with our partners, including Public Health England, which is leading the national response to the coronavirus outbreak.

Different services and government agencies are responsible for leading different parts of our response:

  • Department for Health & Social Care (DHSC): the Chief Medical Officer for England confirms each incident
  • Public Health England (PHE): co-ordinate the response, information and advice on the Coronavirus (Covid-19)
  • NHS: local and national NHS services are working on the front line to test individuals, and provide advice through calls to NHS 111
  • West Sussex County Council: provides local public health leadership by working in partnership to safeguard the county.  They are working with system partners via the LHRP (Local Health Resilience Partnership) and LRF (Local Resilience Forum) to ensure appropriate application of the Sussex pandemic Plan.
     

A message from our staff and councillors

Our staff and councillors would like to remind you that we are here to help you and would like to thank you for all of your support during this crisis:

Coronavirus risk assessment

The Government has recommended that employers publish their Coronavirus risk assessments on their websites. You can find ours here.

Stay safe - leave a space

We're asking you to stay safe by avoiding crowds and busy places; staying at least two metres apart; respecting one another; and if you have to travel, thinking about when and how you do this. If you arrive somewhere that is busy, please do not put yourself and others at risk by adding to the crowds.

Our Civil Enforcement Officers, Foreshore Officers and Community Wardens will be monitoring the situation within our communities. However, it's important that people understand that they do not have any powers to enforce social distancing and can only offer advice and assistance. Please respect our staff and make sure that you observe social distancing measures when approaching them for help. Parking restrictions are also in place for your safety, so please follow them.
If you need to report an incident involving anti-social behaviour, please call 101. We all need to follow the government's guidance on staying safe outside your home

 

Looking out for your neighbour, volunteering and community guide

Please see our Communities - Coronavirus FAQs for information and advice.

Community Guide

We have created a Community Guide, which includes key information, contacts, and guidance all in one place. The aim of the guide is to inform and assist people, and to ensure their safety as well as the safety of any people they may be supporting. You can find this guide at: Help Your Neighbour

Supporting our Communities flyer

We have created a flyer, which includes vital contact numbers, email addresses and web addresses to help you access a variety of support easily and quickly. You can view this here and print it out for yourself or for anyone you think would benefit from it.

Looking our for your neighbour

It is now more important than ever that we reach out to the people around us, and to support our Community Guide, we are launching a new mini-campaign to encourage residents in the Chichester District to look out for their neighbours. This could include offering to pick up shopping or medication, checking in with a friendly phone call, or making sure they can access the help that they need. Details of this are included within the guide and on the website referenced above, along with important advice about how to stay safe while volunteering. On our campaign web page (Help Your Neighbour), you will find a downloadable flyer which you can print off and post through the doors of neighbours to offer support and to give advice on safe ways to accept help.

Volunteering

Our district is renowned for its generosity and its incredible volunteer groups. The role of volunteers at this time is invaluable and we are incredibly grateful. At this moment in time, we don't need any more volunteers, but if you are still keen to help, please look out for your neighbours. Advice on this can be found at the above link.

Community groups and charities can find information on the range of advice and support available to them in our Communities - Coronavirus FAQs.

 

Support for the vulnerable

 

Community Hub

We are working very closely with West Sussex County Council, which has developed a Community Hub to support the most vulnerable residents in our communities. You can contact the Community Hub if you, or someone you know, need help, or if you want to volunteer your services in these difficult times. This will be available seven days a week and staff will be on hand to respond to enquiries from 8am-8pm. The team will be contacting the most vulnerable to tell them how to get help.

The best way to contact the hub is online. If you have access, go to: COVID-19 Community Hub - West Sussex County Council A dedicated telephone helpline is also available for residents who are unable to go online: 033 022 27980.

We are trying to keep the resources available through the hub for those who are most vulnerable, so if you do have support in place already, such as from family or friends, then please continue to use their support. This means that we can focus our efforts on those most in need.

The South Downs National Park Authority have published a map which identifies food suppliers and community groups in their area. The aim of this is to connect communities to local suppliers and support during the coronavirus outbreak. You can view the map here: Connecting communities with local suppliers - South Downs National Park Authority

Domestic abuse support

The Government has issued advice for people facing domestic abuse, with details on how to access help: Domestic Abuse: how to get help - Gov.uk  

The Government has said that the coronavirus household isolation instruction does not apply to anyone who needs to leave their home to escape domestic abuse. 

The Rail Delivery Group has also announced that those fleeing domestic abuse during the coronavirus lockdown can apply for free train travel to refuge accommodation. Tickets can be accessed through Women's Aid Federation of England, Welsh Women's Aid, Scottish Women's Aid and Imkaan.

For more advice and support, please visit our community safety and crime web page.

Communities services support

For updates on our community services and for Frequently Asked Questions about this service, along with volunteering advice, please visit: Communities - Coronavirus FAQs


Report a covid related concern about a business

If you have a concern about a business failing to follow government covid guidance, please use this form to report what you saw.

You will be asked to provide information about your concern. This will include:

  • Your details
  • The name of the business
  • The address of the business
  • What your complaint is

Report a covid related concern about a business

Sign up to our Coronvirus news alerts

Sign up to our email newsletter to access the latest updates on council services. At the moment, our updates will focus on the support we are offering our communities in response to the coronavirus crisis.

Sign up to our news alerts

Newsletter archive

Other ways to follow our updates


Help for businesses

A range of business advice, including information about the Government's package of business support, is available in our business section.

We have also published food safety and health & safety information for businesses.

To support our local businesses, we have launched a new campaign to encourage residents to shop locally. Free downloadable social distancing sign designs, and a COVID-19 compliance poster design are also available for businesses to download and use.


Help with your waste and recycling collections


Help with housing and homelessness


Help with your council tax and benefits services