Covid-19 (Coronavirus) - daily update

This webpage will be updated at least once per day, and more often if there is a need.

LAST UPDATED: 27 MARCH 2020, 23:05

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At this time, the simplest way to ensure your message is received by the Council is either by calling 0300 1234 105 and selecting option 5 to speak to one of our local enquiries team, or by emailing them at enquiries@scilly.gov.uk.

We know that this is an uncertain time for everyone and we want to provide assurance that the Council is working hard to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 (coronavirus). We have listed the areas we think are of greatest interest to our community and given a summary of relevant activity or indicated where you can find the latest information on that topic. We urge everyone to familiarise themselves with the official communication channels for the most accurate and up-to-date information available.

Not everyone has access to the internet, so they won’t be receiving the most up-to-date information. We’d be really grateful if everyone in the community could bear in mind friends or family members who may be in this position and to pass on any of the information below that they think would be useful.

Latest News

Coronavirus: Health workers on frontline to be tested in England

Health workers on the frontline in England will start being tested this weekend to see if they have coronavirus, the government has said. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-52070199

Emergency legislation: The Coronavirus Act 2020

The Coronavirus Act 2020 is an emergency bill which brings a broad range of powers to government to help them deal with the pandemic. The powers range from the ability to restrict events to the use of audio and video links in courts. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-52004116

A round of applause for our NHS colleagues

Across the country tonight, people clapped for the NHS staff who are at the frontline of the coronavirus response. We'd like to say a big thank you to our local NHS workers who are doing the island proud and going above and beyond as always.

Stay at home to stop coronavirus spreading

You should only leave the house for 1 of 4 reasons:

shopping for basic necessities, for example food and medicine, which must be as infrequent as possible

one form of exercise a day, for example a run, walk, or cycle – alone or with members of your household

any medical need, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person

travelling to and from work, but only where this absolutely cannot be done from home

Important

These 4 reasons are exceptions – even when doing these activities, you should be minimising time spent outside of the home and ensuring you are 2 metres apart from anyone outside of your household.

CLOSURE OF PUBLIC TOILETS

Please note, all public toilets operated by the Council on all islands will be closed from tomorrow (27 March 2020) and until further notice.

The UK Government has launched a GOV.UK Coronavirus Information Service on WhatsApp

To use the free GOV.UK Coronavirus Information Service on WhatsApp, simply add 07860 064422 in your phone contacts and then message the word ‘hi’ in a WhatsApp message to get started.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/government-launches-coronavirus-information-service-on-whatsapp

Derek Thomas MP

Derek Thomas MP has raised some important transport issues facing our partners and local businesses during this unprecedented Coronavirus pandemic.

https://www.facebook.com/ioscouncil/posts/1403254616542296

Coronavirus declared a major incident by the Council of the Isles of Scilly

The Council of the Isles of Scilly has declared a major incident in response to the extraordinary challenges posed by the Coronavirus pandemic.

https://scilly.gov.uk/news/coronavirus-declared-major-incident-council-i...

Coronavirus text alert

Some of you may have received a text message from the government reminding everyone of the urgent need to follow the advice to stay at home at this time during the coronavirus pandemic. We urge all residents on Scilly to follow this advice.


Social Distancing

It is vital that everyone follows steps to increase social distancing for the foreseeable future. Social distancing measures are steps you can take to reduce the social interaction between people. This will help reduce the transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19).

For full guidance visit the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-guidance-on-social-d...

Central Government

The central government website remains the best place to check for the most up-to-date and accurate information available nationally. This advice underpins all localised advice.

https://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/coronavirus-covid-19-uk-gov...

Tax Credits

The government has announced that Working Tax Credits payments will be increased from 6 April 2020 - find out what's happening and who this affects.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/increase-to-working-tax-credits-what-this-means

Public Health Cornwall

The Public Health team responsible for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly has issued the following email address for any questions relating to the outbreak: phdesk@cornwall.gov.uk.  It is for use by both individuals and businesses and should be your first port of call of any query you may have.

The Public Health team in Cornwall have also provided self-isolation advice for anyone who finds themselves in the position of needing to self-isolate whilst visiting the islands:

  • Get home as quickly and safely as possible.
  • Try to self-isolate during travel where possible.
  • Travel by boat is recommended where possible.
  • Aim to maintain 2 meter distance from others.

Police

The IOS Police Team have provided and update on the Isles of Scilly Community Safety Partnership Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/IOSCSP/posts/805196626639460

LATEST: "Please, please, please, the community of the Isles of Scilly can we come together and ALL listen to the Government and respect and follow their restrictions and guidelines. This isn't about rules and regulations and trying to bend and interpret them to make it fit your lives, but for us all to remember why we are being asked to do this - to save lives.

At times like this the community needs to help Police itself as we cannot be everywhere at once. Challenge each other but please be kind. Abuse and threats on social media are NOT acceptable and will be investigated by Police.

No person in this country wishes to be in the situation we are facing and it will affect and inconvenience every single one of us in many different ways. No Police Officer wants to be out, putting themselves and others at risk to stop people from enjoying their freedom but remember why we are doing this - to save lives.

As a reminder, you must be in your own home unless:
1. Shopping for basic necessities, i.e food and medicine and this must be as infrequently as possible
2. One form of exercise a day (i.e run, walk or cycle) - alone or with members of your household. People can walk about for exercise once a day but please stop as infrequently as possible
3. Any medical need or to provide care for a vulnerable person
4. Travelling to and from work, where this cannot be done at home and is ABSOLUTELY necessary.

Again, we reiterate these rules are not there to bend and find a way around - they are to save lives.

STAY HOME AND SAVE LIVES!

Thank you for helping each other.

IOS Police Team"
 

GPs & Health Centre

As most of you will already be aware, local GP Chris Picken is doing a great job of updating the community on what we need to know about our local health provision at this time.  He (or sometimes Kerrie Picken) updates the Isles of Scilly Residents’ Notice Board on a regular basis.

Pharmacy

For the latest updates from the pharmacy, visit their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/IslesOfScillyPharmacy/

The Isles of Scilly Pharmacy updates its collection times on the Isles of Scilly Residents’ Notice Board on Facebook.  Please do not visit the pharmacy if you are feeling unwell, instead make arrangements for someone to collect on your behalf.  The pharmacy staff are would like to remind people to allow them as much time as possible to process prescriptions and not to call or visit ‘on the off-chance’ a prescription will be ready early, as this has a counterproductive effect. Thank you for your patience.

St Mary's Hospital

St Mary’s Hospital has provided the following update - for more updates, see the Isles of Scilly Resident's Noticeboard on Facebook:

In view of the escalating Covid 19 situation, we have been informed that there will be NO visiting allowed to hospital patients unless in exceptional compassionate circumstances.

Please help us to keep our patients and staff safe by keeping away from the hospital unless absolutely necessary.

Mental Health Nurse

Existing appointments will now be conducted via telephone at the booked time.  If you need primary care mental health support, please call St Mary’s Health Centre on 01720 422628.

Dentist

Brighter Dental has now ceased providing most routine dental care and will be contacting anyone with an existing appointment.  Emergency care provision is being maintained.  Updates on service provision will be given on the Isles of Scilly Residents’ Notice Board on Facebook.  Please do not visit the dental surgery if you are ill or have visited any affected country in the last 14 days.

Royal Cornwall Hospitals

An announcement from Royal Cornwall Hospitals on their Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/RoyalCornwallHospitalsTrust/posts/3143568102343860

We will begin postponing non-urgent planned operations across Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly from Monday 23 March for at least three months.

We know many people waiting for treatment will be disappointed or worried. We would ask you NOT to call us, as we will be contacting everyone affected as soon as possible.

Urgent and emergency cases and cancer treatments will be carrying on as normal.

Routine referrals from GPs and most outpatient appointments will also be postponed for at least three months, as part of steps to make sure we can maintain consistent levels of safety and standards for people using our services. Where possible some of the services that are continuing may also be delivered in a different way to the usual face to face appointments and instead we will use video and telephone consultations when it is clinically appropriate.

We are sure our patients and local people will understand the need for the steps we are taking and support our staff over coming weeks and months.

 

Healthwatch

If you need any advice from Healthwatch, contact 01720 423037. They have provided the following update on their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Healthwatch-Isles-of-Scilly-451638095510/

Community Support

Due to the current situation we are working with Adult Social Care and the council to help members of the community on the islands who may need increased support due to isolation.

Our role in this is to match you up, where we can, with a volunteer who may be able to support you.

If you need help please call Healthwatch on 01720 423037,

Monday to Thursday 9:00 - 12:00.

At other times you can leave a message on our:

*Answerphone

*Facebook page: Healthwatch Isles of Scilly

*Email: contact@healthwatchislesofscilly.co.uk

Website: www.healthwatchislesofscilly.co.uk

... and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

In an emergency situation please dial 999, 111 or contact Adult Social Care on: 03001234105 or (out of Hours) 01720 422699.

For volunteers:

It is important that volunteers keep up to date with current advice and take the information given to protect yourselves before offering to help others.

Anyone who had already given Matt Davis their name as someone who can give support to those who are self-isolating, please can you contact the Healthwatch office via email: contact@healthwatchislesofscilly.co.uk or phone 01720 423037 (Monday to Thursday 9:00 - 2:00), or leave a message on our answerphone, so we can note your contact details.

Thank you so much to those who have already offered help.

How to help safely

Are you helping someone in the community already, or would like to do so, but are unsure how to do so safely? This guidance has you covered.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-how-to-help-safel...

Post office and mail services

The Post Office team have introduced some social distancing measures in line with government guidleines.

For everyone's safety, comfort and peace of mind, and due to the size of the Post Office, we can only allow one customer in at a time.  Please wait outside, observing the 2m social distancing guidelines.  Thank you for your patience and understanding in these difficult times.

If you have any questions or concerns about postal service provision, you can call the local Post Office number on 01720 422454.

Tresco

Tresco Estate are providing regular updates during the coronvirus pandemic:

https://www.tresco.co.uk/coronavirus-statement

Duchy

The Duchy of Cornwall are emailing or writing to all tenants in line with their usual communications policy.

Harbour Authority

St Mary’s Harbour provides regular updates on its Twitter account: https://twitter.com/StMarysHbr

The Duty Phone number for the harbour is 07789 273 626 and the Harbour Master’s number is 07789 273 610.

Island Carriers

Message from Island Carriers:

I wanted to take this opportunity to reassure you that whilst we are still operating getting essential food and freight distributed to the island as usual, we’re rigorously following the advice of the government and Public Health England and putting the safety and wellbeing of our employees and you, our valued customers and your loved ones first and implementing Contactless Deliveries.

We hope that contactless deliveries will offer peace of mind and protection for everyone.  We have recommended that our delivery drivers place the parcel/goods in a safe location, ring the doorbell and stand two metres back while the recipient opens the door.  If the recipient is unavailable we will leave the parcel in a safe place.  If this is not suitable for you, please let us know and call the office on 422662.

Richard Hand Haulage

Richard Hand Haulage has issued a customer notice regarding luggage delivery and collection service from Scillonian III.

Due to the current climate with Covid-19, we have decided for the safety and well-being of our employees we will not offering the luggage collection and delivery service that has been the norm in previous years.  We will only be collecting luggage for passengers who are returning to the island. This service will be operated on a pre-booked service only, contact via phone, email, text message or messenger. Please also be aware that our team will not be on the quay when the boat docks. They will instead wait in a safe area until all passengers have disembarked the Scillonian and have vacated the quay.

Also remember when your luggage is delivered to your home the driver will put it outside the door, then knock or ring the bell. (unless you have given us specific delivery instructions). Please refrain from approaching the driver, he will leave a ticket on the luggage with payment details, or the delivery charge will be added the account you hold with us.

Charges will be the same as last year at £1.50 per bag.

As we continue to operate in these difficult times the safety and welfare of the community is paramount.

Many Thanks

Richard Hand

www.islesofscillyhaulage.com

richardhand@btconnect.com

01720423007

The Co-operative Food

The Co-op will display posters and use the Isles of Scilly Resident’s Notice Board on Facebook to update the community on any changes to their service provision. They are confident they can maintain appropriate levels of supply, even on limited lines, if everyone only buys what they need and does not panic buy. If you have any concerns or queries about food supplies, please call the shop on 01720 422396.

Community Venture

A new initiative from the community venture has been announced by the Community Venture, in an effort to make everyone's lives a little easier during the pandemic.

Following a number of businesses offering local delivery, we have created a directory page to coordinate this information during this time. We hope that this is useful - please visit:

https://www.ioscv.co.uk/scillydirect?fbclid=IwAR1MFrsHJvOkQYI_HzGfE5kRMquUPtfEMxdRwLGBCw_IE3hUDxzWtYPC3Ks

Skills Hub

The Skills Hub need your help providing government with evidence of the need for business support, and to help inform what shape it should take.

We’re working with our partners to capture information about how COVID-19 is impacting on businesses in Cornwall & Scilly, including charities, social enterprises & sole traders. Please take a few minutes to fill out this survey and the anonymised results will be shared with Government to inform current and future business support measures.

https://surveymonkey.co.uk/r/2N39WBL, Cornwall Council Cornwall Chamber of Commerce

Sibley’s Fuel and Marine Services

Sibley’s provide updates via their Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/SibleysFuels/

Community Bus 

Update from Steve Simms:

The community bus is on hold for this year until further notice.

School

The Local Authority, Five Islands Academy and local childcare providers have been working together in light of the government’s directive regarding school, childcare provider and nursery closures. To find out more on education provision for critical workers, see the following link:

https://scilly.gov.uk/news/education-provision-critical-workers

Isles of Scilly Travel

Isles of Scilly Travel are providing regular updates on their website and social media channels:

https://www.islesofscilly-travel.co.uk/coronavirus/

https://www.facebook.com/islesofscillytravel

https://twitter.com/IOSTRAVEL

Tresco Boat Services

For the latest news from Tresco Boat Services, visti their webpage at the following link: https://www.tresco.co.uk/arriving/tresco-boats

LATEST: "Following last night’s Government directive, Tresco Boat Services will have boatmen on standby for essential trips only until further notice. There will be no scheduled boating."

St Agnes boating

St Agnes boating provide regular updates on their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/stagnesboating. Here's the latest from the crew:

"Following government’s advice, we are now requesting that people travel with us for essential reasons only, until further notice."

Boatman's Association

Inter-island boat services are not currently running.  The start of the season for boating is usually 1 April, but the Boatman’s Association will led by government guidance as to whether this will be possible.

Penzance Helicopters

For the latest updates from Penzance Helicopters, visit their news webpage: https://penzancehelicopters.co.uk/news

LATEST: "In accordance with the latest Government and World Health Organisation (WHO) advice concerning COVID-19, we have made the difficult, but important decision to cease all flights scheduled over the next few weeks. The health and wellbeing of our passengers, staff, and suppliers is of the utmost importance to us." (https://penzancehelicopters.co.uk/news/covid-19-coronavirus-update)

COUNCIL SERVICES

Emergency Planning

The Council’s Emergency Planning Team is working closely with all our key partners, both on island and on the mainland to monitor and assess the situation on a daily basis and to ensure our multi agency services continue to run effectively.

Adult Social Care

Residential Care

In line with the government guidance, Park House is no longer able to welcome visitors. Exceptions for compassionate visits will be made on a case-by-case basis.

Our residential service at Park House has robust contingency plans in place, as required by Care Quality Commission, to ensure best practice in infection control and the mitigation of staff absence. There are detailed plans in place to ensure the wellbeing of residents. The team are having conversations with families in relation to contact with loved ones.

Community care

The community care team are following best practice guidance. They are able to meet the needs of our clients in the community.  There will be discussions with families should we need to adapt services in response to increasing demand.

Buzza Bus

Age UK Cornwall and Isles of Scilly has released this statement:

As of 18 March, the Buzza Bus will only be making journeys for shopping or pharmacy pick-ups.  We will review the situation at the end of next week (27 March). We apologise for any inconvenience. Any further updates will be posted on the Isles of Scilly Residents’ Notice Board on Facebook.

Children’s Services

Contacting Children's Social Care

Children and Family Services are having some technical issues with phones. If you need to speak to Sue Fraser, Social Worker during working hours please ring 07825 313550. For Lynn Plummer ring 01720 424481 and calls will be transferred to her. 

As usual for all out of hours calls please ring 01720 422699 and ask the children’s duty social worker to ring you back. 

Children’s Services are focussing on families most in need of support and devising means of non-contact input

All Council-run toddler and youth sessions have been cancelled. To support families, we are developing a range of online activities that you can access. For starters, check out Meriel's Scilly play sessions, more to come soon...

 

Health Visitor and School Nurse 

The Isles of Scilly Health Visiting/School Nursing Team are using the Isles of Scilly Residents’ Notice Board page on Facebook to communicate their latest updates.  Here's the latest from the team...

Although Alison and Paula are unable to do home visits at present, we are very much available for phone advice or a chat! PLEASE do ring us if you have any questions about eating, sleeping, infant feeding, behaviour, minor ailments etc.  These problems still exist so please don’t let them add to your worries.

If your child is due a review, we will contact you to do this by phone.  Look after yourselves at this difficult time.  The mobile number is 07483 351147.

Kind regards
Alison and Paula

Airport

In order to achieve Civil Aviation Authority compliance, St Mary’s Airport has always had robust business continuity plans in place. These are being adapted to the current situation. The priority is to maintain lifeline services.

Fire & Rescue Service

For all the latest updates from the Isles of Scilly Fire & Rescue Service, check out their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/IOSFireRescue/. Here's the most recent post:

In order to continue our operational readiness, the Isles of Scilly Fire & Rescue Service at this time will not be carrying out home safety visits and will be limiting any public engagements. Our priorities at this stage are to do all we can to stop the spread of this virus, to protect the public, our staff & safeguard our resilience. We continue to work at a multi-agency level with the Council, Cornwall Fire & Rescue, The NHS and central Government.

Human Resources

The Council is providing support to all staff to ensure that they can abide by national guidance and care for loved ones. We are also providing additional tools to allow homeworking where possible.

Elections

The Electoral Commission has confirmed that the Police and Crime Commissioner election will not take place this year. UK Government has announced plans to bring forward legislation to move the 7 May 2020 scheduled polls to 6 May 2021.

Registration of births, deaths and marriages

For regular updates from the Registration team, visit their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/celebrateonscilly

Email:  registration@scilly.gov.uk Phone: 01720 424501.

In line with Government restrictions, all marriages, civil partnerships and non-statutory ceremonies are cancelled or postponed to later in this or next year. Full refunds will be given. We are also deferring the taking of Notices and Birth Registrations for the foreseeable future. This will not affect claims for Child Benefits etc. These restrictions will be reviewed as the situation develops.  Please contact us for further information.

Advice regarding Death Registrations

Following the introduction of the Emergency Powers Bill into law, the Register Office will now take Death Registrations over the phone. Bereaved relatives may contact the Registration Service for advice on 01720 424501 but if there is no answer feel free to phone the Registrars on their home numbers, Lesley Thomas on 422658, or Angela Chandler on 423960. You may also contact us by email on registration@scilly.gov.uk. Emails will be checked daily, Monday to Friday.

If the death took place in the islands the Doctor will issue a certificate, together with contact details for the person who will register the death and send this directly to the Register Office. Relatives will not need to pick up the certificate. A registrar will then contact the informant and arrange a telephone appointment as soon as possible.

If the death took place on the mainland relatives should contact the Register Office in the district where the death took place. For Treliske or West Cornwall Hospital, the Truro Register Office should be contacted on 0300 1234 181. For Derriford Hospital contact the Plymouth Register Office on 01725 268331 for instructions.

Copies of the Death Certificate will be issued and posted as soon as possible after registration.

Business Continuity

The Council has business continuity plans in place and is using them to tailor the response to this event.

For any employers concerned about business continuity, you can find a range of resources and support at the following links:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/business-continuity-planning

https://www.thebci.org

Waste

WASTE & RECYCLING UPDATE
Waste is an essential service. Whilst most of our services are running as usual, thanks to the commitment and dedication of our staff, contractors and your continued support, there are, however, some changes.

WASTE COLLECTIONS
All waste collections are currently operating as normal. However, we are having to reduce staff undertaking collections on St Marys. As so, we are asking residents not to overfill waste sacks. Please separate waste into a few sacks to avoid the collection operatives carrying heavy, single sacks.

Please remember if you are showing symptoms of COVID-19 to ensure that your personal waste (tissues and cleaning cloths) is double-bagged and both bags are tied at the top and kept away from other waste. This waste should be kept aside for 72 hours before being placed out for collection.

WASTE AND RECYCLING SACKS
For all urgent waste & recycling sack orders please email enquiries@scilly.gov.uk or call 0300 1234 105 and select option 5. Please provide at least a week's notice.

PORTHMELLON WASTE & RECYCLING SITE
Is closed for Household Waste Acceptance on Tuesdays and Thursdays for a period of at least 3 weeks.

To ensure we can continue to run services we are restricting commercial disposal to:
Richard Hand Haulage: Mondays Only
Island Carriers: Wednesdays Only
All other commercial waste customers: Fridays Only (only where absolutely necessary)

To ensure the health and safety of our waste & recycling operatives please do not get out of your vehicle when you come to the weighbridge. Please stay in your vehicle and communicate with staff through an open window keeping the 2 metre separation distance as required. Staff will remain in the weighbridge office. If you need to receive a copy of your weighbridge ticket, please communicate your email address to the weighbridge operator so we can send this to you electronically. Please ensure you can handle the waste you bring to site yourselves, otherwise it cannot be accepted at this time.

OFF ISLANDS
St Martin’s: Collections as usual. The waste site is Closed.
Bryher: Waste site is Closed. Your waste contractor will start collecting from all properties this week.
St Agnes: Open for residual waste and recycling only (usual times). Please adhere to strict acceptance policy on site under the waste contractors guidance and maintain the 2 metre social distancing measure at all times.

All the above information will be reviewed regularly and changes communicated as soon as required.

Thank you for your cooperation.

Water & Sewerage

The Water Department continue to operate whilst limiting their interaction with the public.  Personnel will be responding to emergency calls only and in addition to the normal high visibility clothing will also be wearing full Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), such as white overalls and a mask.  

Please do not be alarmed, this is precautionary only as it is not possible for front line staff to completely segregate from the public.  

Final meter readings for commercial properties

We are also asking commercial and business owners to read their water meters in order to provide us with a final meter reading in preparation for the transfer of service to South West Water on 1st April. Advice on this can be found in the leaflet at the following link, which can be downloaded and filled out https://scilly.gov.uk/sites/default/files/IOS%20How%20To%20Read%20Your%2.... We are also sending leaflets out directly to commercial customers. Thank you in advance for your help in this. 

With regard to the sewerage service, we urge you not to flush kitchen roll, wet wipes or newspaper down the loo as this can cause major blockages in our sewers. Please only flush the 3P’s – pee, paper and poo.  Anything else, throw in the bin (and follow advice above on double bagging personal waste in symptomatic households).

Maintenance and repair services

Most of our services are currently running as normal. We have contingency plans in place to cover essential members of staff should they become ill.

In order to reduce the chances of spreading infection, the Maintenance and Repair team are only carrying out essential work in high risk areas, such as Park House and Council housing.

Reception points and paying bills

Please note that both of the Council's reception points (library and Carn Gwaval) are closed until further notice.

For payments and enquiries contact us directly on 0300 1234 105 (select option 5 if you want to speak to someone locally).

If you currently pay in person, please pay over the phone until further notice. If you are unable to pay, please contact us to discuss other options.

Active Scilly

Please note that Active Scilly venues and the Carn Gwaval reception point are closed until further notice.

The good news is that as of next week the team will be working on bringing you ‘Active Scilly Live,’ streaming some of your favourite classes and launching our very own YouTube Channel so you can stay fit and healthy during this time.  Check out our Facebook  page to receive alerts and updates.

https://www.facebook.com/activescilly/

All Active Scilly packages will automatically be carried forward to when we re-open. We look forward to seeing you again soon and in the meantime, stay safe and keep moving. 

Library

Please note that the library is closed until further notice.

For payments and enquiries contact the Hub directly on 0300 1234 105 (select option 5 to speak to someone locally).

If you currently pay in person, please pay over the phone until further notice. If you are unable to pay, please contact us to discuss other options.

You can renew library books by phone during opening hours by calling 01720 424499. There’s also a 24 hour renewal line 0845 607 6119  (calls charged at local rate – have your book and library card to hand) or you can go online at www.cornwall.gov.uk/leisure-and-culture/libraries/. Also, whilst we are in this situation, people can renew their books as many times as they like without it having to be seen.

All fines will be waived until further notice.

Follow the Facebook page for St Mary’s Library for updates https://www.facebook.com/scillylibrary/ or feel free to email us if you have any questions: library@scilly.gov.uk.

Computer Help 

Are you having trouble with your computer? The Cornwall Rural Community Charity are offering help with IT for anyone stuck at home.  Call 01872 243557 or 01872 243534 for FREE telephone support with laptops, tablets or smartphones.

http://www.cornwallrcc.org.uk

Learn Scilly

Learn Scilly has postponed all face to face courses and workshops until further notice and the team are now working on an exciting curriculum that we hope to be able to deliver in the Autumn Term. In the meantime, if you have any queries regarding skills, qualifications, careers or opportunities for online learning, please do not hesitate to contact us at Learnscilly@scilly.gov.uk​ 

Planning

Planning Applications

The Planning Department will continue to process any planning applications currently with the Council, under delegated authority. We would ask that any correspondence and communication is limited to emails at the current time, due to pressure on the Council in terms of the postal service. We may not be able to post out letters and there will be a delay answering any correspondence that arrives by hand or by Royal Mail. For anyone who wants an update on the status of a particular planning application please email us at planning@scilly.gov.uk.

If you wish to submit a new planning application, at present we are able to process only those which are submitted through the Planning Portal or are submitted by some other digital format (such as email). Any application submitted by post may be subject to delays, given the remote-working nature of staff. You should continue to provide all the information necessary as set out in the national planning requirements for submitting a planning application.  There may be a delay in reaching a decision if a visit to the site is not currently possible.

We will continue to update the Weekly List here with any new applications validated.

Local Plan

For those interested in the latest position on the Local Plan.  We would confirm that following the Examination in Public which took place at the end of January 2020, Officers have now submitted the Modified Local Plan to the Planning Inspector for consideration. Any modifications to the plan will be subject to public consultation before he concludes on a final recommendation to this Council, in terms of the soundness and legal compliance of the new Local Plan. Due to the controls in place to limit the spread and effects of Coronavirus, there is likely to be a delay in consulting the public on this modified version of the Local Plan.  We will update the Local Plan pages of our website here with any details and timing of public consultation on this.

Business Support

Government information regarding support for businesses and the self-employed can be found here

Specific government advice for the self-employed through the Self-employment Income Support Scheme  can be found here

Specific guidance for employers and businesses on Coronavirus can be found here

Businesses and the self-employed can contact colleagues at the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth Hub for advice and  guidance regarding access to support packages appropriate to their needs.

The Growth Hub can be contacted via: hello@ciosgrowthhub.com or www.ciosgrowthhub.com  

A number of the Government’s financial support initiatives will be applied automatically via either the Business Rates process, or with HMRC, or your bank.

 Business Rates for the Isles of Scilly are administered on our behalf by Cornwall Council.

 We are currently awaiting further guidance on the administration of: 

Cash grants for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses of up to £25,000 will be made available to eligible businesses depending on the rateable value of your property.

 • Support for businesses that pay little or no business rates. 

We will be in touch with businesses as soon as we receive further details.

Isles of Scilly Voucher Scheme

Following recent Coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance for local government workers the Voucher Scheme office is now closed.

The Voucher Scheme team will be working remotely from home and can be contacted by via email:

Milena Fallows, Programme manager: Milena.Fallows@scilly.gov.uk

Kirsty Graham, Engagement Officer: Kirsty.Graham@scilly.gov.uk

Expressions of interest in the scheme should be submitted via https://www.iosvoucherscheme.co.uk/

Environmental Health

The council’s Environmental Health team will aim to deliver services remotely by telephone, email and skype to limit direct or close contact as per current government guidelines.

We've produced guidance for food businesses and takeaway services: https://www.scilly.gov.uk/business-licensing/environmental-health/food-s...

Visits to premises will only be undertaken where essential in order to protect public safety. This could include situations where there may be an imminent risk to health and unsafe workplaces.

Every enquiry received will be risk assessed and responded to, based on priority.

A service business continuity plan is in place which addresses the eventuality of absent officers by the utilisation of remaining team members with key contacts listed of professional bodies who will support the service, should the need arise.

 

Licensing

The council’s Licensing team will aim to deliver services remotely by telephone, email and skype to limit direct or close contact as per current government guidelines.

Animal Health

The council’s Animal Health team will aim to deliver services remotely by telephone, email and skype to limit direct or close contact as per current government guidelines.

Housing

The Government has given clear national guidance that we must all avoid travel and social contact unless strictly necessary.

We take the Prime Minister’s announcement of increased restrictions seriously, so the range of services available to our customers during this difficult period is now limited.

Reporting repairs or requesting home visits

Given the current situation our repairs service is now restricted to emergency and essential repairs only.  We are constantly reviewing the situation, staff absences and government guidance and will review the situation in the coming weeks. We have already made some changes to help keep staff and residents safe in the following ways:

If you contact us to report an emergency repair, we will ask you if you or anyone you are living with are ill or self-isolating.

  • Where possible we ask if you can photograph the issue and email this to housing@scilly.gov.uk for assessment and to give us a clear understanding. 
  • Works will be assessed, and a decision made if these are emergency/essential works or if they can be postponed until a more suitable time.
  • When staff arrive at your home, they will ask if everyone in your household is well before entering.
  • When carrying out any repairs, our staff will ask you to leave the room where they will be working if possible.
  • We’ve asked our staff to attend in appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), wash their hands before entering your home and any time they leave. 

We’ve asked staff take these steps to help keep them and you safe, and to try to limit the spread of the virus.

Building closures

Both the Library and Carn Gwaval receptions are now closed to the public until further notice.

  • For payments and enquiries contact us directly on 0300 1234 105 (select option 5 if you want to speak to someone locally).
  • If you currently make payments in person, please pay over the phone until further notice. If you are unable to pay, please contact us to discuss other options.

Difficulty paying rent due to income loss through Coronavirus

  • If tenants are having difficulty paying their rent due to a loss of income as a result of the Coronavirus, please call us as soon as possible on 01720 424441. 
  • We have made a commitment not to evict anyone in these specific circumstances.
  • There have been changes to Universal Credit, which could mean increased options for those of working age. You can find out more about Universal Credit here, please follow the link to find out if you are eligible and to apply online.  
  • For our elderly tenants, please email housing@scilly.gov.uk or call us on 01720 424441 and we discuss your options. 

Vulnerable tenants

  • Government guidance is to avoid visiting friends and family who do not live in your home.
  • Our staff will only visit in person when there is an emergency or essential action needed.  This would be assessed on a case-by-case basis.
  • Our vulnerable tenants are encouraged to stay in regular contact with staff by phone on 01720 424441.

Other changes to services

Our staff are conducting all meetings over the phone until further notice.

As our phone line is likely to be busier than normal we’d ask that tenants use digital methods of contacting the housing department if possible. You can email us at: housing@scilly.gov.uk and we will respond as quickly as we can. 

IFCA

An update from our IFCA team.

We recognise the unprecedented impact that the pandemic is having on fishing business and coastal communities. IFCA are working hard to maintain essential services and support local fishing communities whilst protecting our own workforce during this very difficult and uncertain time. IFCOs, where it is safe and appropriate to do so, will continue to patrol the islands and engage with fishermen and stakeholders.  Officers will be following the latest government advice in relation to minimising the spread of the Coronavirus, which may mean officers need to carry out their work in alternative ways.

We are working, where it is safe to do so, to ensure that permits and sampling regimes are maintained as far as is practically possible. Our aim is to continue to support coastal communities and the industry and help to keep fishing and trading to be ready to recover when the time comes. We are working very closely with Defra and our partner agencies including the Marine Management Organisation, Seafish and Cefas. Through this coordinated network we are liaising directly with industry, and their representatives and our Local Authorities, to support their essential services.

 For the latest news on the Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Authority, see their website: https://www.scillyifca.gov.uk/

For updates and advice on coronavirus, please visit the NHS website at the following link:

 

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

 

 

What is social distancing?

Social distancing measures are steps you can take to reduce the social interaction between people. This will help reduce the transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19).

They are:

  1. Avoid contact with someone who is displaying symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19). These symptoms include high temperature and/or new and continuous cough
  2. Avoid non-essential use of public transport, varying your travel times to avoid rush hour, when possible
  3. Work from home, where possible. Your employer should support you to do this. Please refer to employer guidance for more information
  4. Avoid large gatherings, and gatherings in smaller public spaces such as pubs, cinemas, restaurants, theatres, bars, clubs
  5. Avoid gatherings with friends and family. Keep in touch using remote technology such as phone, internet, and social media
  6. Use telephone or online services to contact your GP or other essential services

Everyone should be trying to follow these measures as much as is practicable.

We strongly advise you to follow the above measures as much as you can and to significantly limit your face-to-face interaction with friends and family if possible, particularly if you:

  • are over 70
  • have an underlying health condition
  • are pregnant

This advice is likely to be in place for some weeks.

More information

Publishing date: 
Wednesday, 4 March, 2020