Tier Two restrictions for Worcestershire

Today, the Government announced Worcestershire will go into Tier Two category of restrictions, once the current lockdown finishes on December 2nd.

Worcestershire has worked very hard during the lockdown to reduce the number of cases of Covid-19 in the county.

We have seen some good progress, which has resulted in the county avoiding tier 3 restrictions. We now need to continue the good work and bring the number of Covid-19 cases down further.

From Wednesday 2nd December, everyone in Worcestershire will need to observe Tier Two restrictions.

Tier Two restrictions include:

  • you must not socialise with anyone you do not live with or who is not in your support bubble in any indoor setting, whether at home or in a public place.
  • you must not socialise in a group of more than 6 people outside, including in a garden or a public space – this is called the ‘rule of 6’.
  • businesses and venues can continue to operate, in a COVID-Secure manner, other than those which remain closed by law, such as nightclubs.
  • pubs and bars must close, unless operating as restaurants. Hospitality venues can only serve alcohol with substantial meals.

The full list of restrictions are available on the dedicated pages of the Government’s website.

These restrictions are considered necessary because the infection rate remains too high. The virus doesn’t stay in a single area but spreads where people are mixing. It is very important that we all now follow these new rules, to reduce the number of Covid-19 cases and stop the virus spreading further.

Dr Kathryn Cobain, Director for Public Health for Worcestershire said:  

“I would like to thank you all for your continued hard work in helping to stop the spread of Covid-19. During these recent restrictions, we have seen some positive signs that Covid-19 cases are starting to stabilise in the county.

The tier we will be in from December 2nd, will be reviewed every two weeks so it is important that we keep these figures heading in the right direction. Therefore, we need to continue to follow the measures in place to protect us all. We need to keep following the rules and keep building on the hard work we have done so far.

This is a real opportunity, to take control of the virus, get our figures down and reduce the risk of transmission, especially with Christmas around the corner.

It is up to us all now to keep going with the good work, by social distancing, by wearing a face covering, by washing our hands regularly and limiting our contacts.”

Councillor John Smith, Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing and Chairman of the Health and Wellbeing Board added: “These new measures represent a renewed opportunity to get our numbers down even more. If we keep working together to follow the rules, we will keep the people of Worcestershire safe and reduce the transmission of the virus.”

For the latest information on the restrictions and what you can do over the Christmas period visit the dedicated pages of the County Council’s website.

Stay Home, Stay Safe

We know that people over 60 can be badly affected by the virus. It can make you very poorly, need hospital care and even cause death. This is, of course, very worrying. It also has implications for our NHS. It leads to pressure on our services and creates a rising demand for intensive care beds. We need to act now, to prevent this situation becoming any worse.

How can you help?  How can you protect yourself and others?  Please follow national restrictions during the lockdown period and then any new guidance from 2nd December. You should also keep your distance, wash your hands regularly and wear face coverings where needed. These measures are our best defence against the virus. We know it can be hard, keeping a distance from others, avoiding travelling to places, not meeting up with friends or family. But the virus spreads when we mix and have contact and don’t stay apart. Stay local, don’t visit areas with higher levels of restrictions. If we can stay local, stop visiting areas with greater numbers of infections, we can protect ourselves and others.

Please ensure you self-isolate as soon as you have a symptom of Covid-19. The symptoms to look out for 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

If you have any of these, no matter how mild your symptoms, please self-isolate immediately and book a test. You can do this online https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test or by calling 119.

With a second national lockdown in place, the County Council’s Here2Help service is on hand to help residents who require extra support.

A phone number has been set up to help fill out the form for those who can’t access the internet. The dedicated number is: 01905 768053 and is open Monday – Thursday 9:00 – 5:00pm and Friday 9:00 – 4:30pm.

Guidance for those who are clinically extremely vulnerable has been updated to include additional measures to keep this group safe during lockdown. This information is available on the Here2Help shielding advice page on the county council’s website. The Government is encouraging people in this group to register for support on the national website where they, for example, can get access to priority supermarket deliveries.

For more information, please visit: www.worcestershire.gov.uk/here2help

Register for Coronavirus Business Grant Support Now

Register for grant support now for businesses forced to close from 5th November 2020

If you have a business rates account, and your business has been forced to close apply for the Local Restrictions Support Grant click HERE.

There is more information about the qualifying criteria at our business rates page.

The Government is giving councils in England funding to provide grant support payments to businesses with a business rates account forced to close due to the COVID-19 restrictions.

If you are required to close in England because of national restrictions being introduced on 5 November 2020, you may qualify for the following:

  • For properties with a rateable value of £15,000 or under, grants to be £1,334 per four weeks
  • For properties with a rateable value of over £15,000 and below £51,000, grants to be £2,000 per four weeks
  • For properties with a rateable value of £51,000 or over grants to be £3,000 per four weeks

Please check our business pages for information about which business must close, and those that may remain open, and what other business support is available.

Find out more about the new national restrictions on the Government’s website.

Please note that the Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG) is not yet available. We are waiting to receive detailed guidance and funding for this scheme. We will let you know once this scheme is open and how you can apply.

Please check our business pages for further updates or sign up to our business e-newsletter.

Other support available

Please check the Government’s website for information about support for business during COVID-19.

Worcestershire Business Central are there to advise local businesses on grant funding and support helping you restart and recover. Please  see their website, call them on 01905 677 888 or email  info@business-central.co.uk.

Please also see the Chamber of Commerce Herefordshire and Worcestershire Coronavirus information hub.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): what you need to do

www.gov.uk/coronavirus

The information available to businesses is changing regularly. We will continue to provide information as soon as we receive it. If you know of any businesses that would benefit from receiving these updates, please let them know they can sign up to our e-newsletter.

Latest Coronavirus update

National Coronavirus restrictions

New national Coronavirus restrictions were introduced on 5 November 2020 and will last until at least 2 December 2020.

You should only leave home for the following reasons:

  • for education
  • for work, if you cannot work from home
  • for exercise and recreation outdoors
  • for medical reasons
  • to shop for food and essentials
  • to care for others

Find out more about the new national coronavirus restrictions on the Government’s website.

New guidance has also been published on social distancing from 5 November 2020 which includes information on meeting up with others.

Advice if you are clinically extremely vulnerable

If you are clinically extremely vulnerable then you will need to take extra precautions to keep yourself safe.

Advice on protecting yourself if you are clinically extremely vulnerable

If you need help getting food, medicines, essential supplies or other support then please visit Worcestershire Here 2 Help and make a request.

Forming a childcare bubble

A childcare bubble is where one household links with one other household to provide informal childcare to a child or children aged 13 or under.

They can provide the childcare in either or both of the homes from the two households. ‘Informal’ childcare means it is unpaid and unregistered. The childcare can be provided where necessary in any location – public or private, indoors or outdoors.

Read the guidance on making a childcare bubble with another household.

Impact on services

Keep it local during lockdown

Local traders need your support more than ever. While some have been forced to close their doors because of the new restrictions, many are still offering click and collect and delivery services.

We are putting together a list of local traders offering such services, which we hope to publish shortly, to help you discover what is on offer locally from the safety of your own home.

A new business support grant scheme is being set up to support businesses forced to close by law as a result of the new restrictions. We will have more information to release about this next week.

Free parking offer

You can now park for free in any Wychavon pay and display car park until 3 January 2021.

On-street waiting times and other parking restrictions still apply.

Support if you are self isolating

Even though we are staying at home more, it is still really important if you have symptoms of Coronavirus that you self isolate straight away and get a test.

Advice on how to self isolate

If you need help while self isolating then please visit Worcestershire Here 2 Help and make a request.

If you suffer financial hardship as a result of self isolating then you may qualify for a £500 self isolation support payment.

The NHS is still there for you

Despite the pressure the NHS is under as a result of Covid-19, it is important you know that NHS services – from GPs to hospitals – are still available to you.

If you need help then you should seek it. The NHS has put lots of measures in place to make sure services are safe for you to use.

This is particularly important if you are concerned you have potential symptoms of cancer. Please go and get checked, do not delay. If you have routine appointments planned, please keep them.

Help the NHS to help you by contacting them in the usual way if you need to.

Remember the fallen from home

While small, socially distanced, invite-only services are taking place around memorials in some areas, the public must stay at home.

Instead of attending services, we are asking you to pay your respects by standing on your doorstep at 11am on Sunday 8 November and Wednesday 11 November, to join in the national two-minute silence.

You can also watch services in some areas online.

Find out more about local remembrance events

You are also encouraged to print off the official poppy picture from the Royal British Legion website and display it in your window, in return for a donation to the charity.

Droitwich artist Rosie Philpott has also produced some posters that can be coloured in. If you download them you are encouraged to donate to the Poppy Appeal.

Download the official poppy poster

Download remembrance coloring in pages from Rosie Philpott