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COVID-19 update from your College Ward LibDem Councillors – Friday 10th April

April 10, 2020 2:40 PM
By David Gulland

The following captures some key updates since our last Update, mainly based on a catch-up with Kathryn Beldon (the CEO of the Council) on Thursday afternoon:

Council Services:

1 - Council matters:

  • The council continues updating their website regularly during the crisis. Please see https://www.epsom-ewell.gov.uk/news/coronavirus-covid-19-council-services-update.
  • They are trying to find better ways of sharing information but are not able to use the emails they have on their system because of data protection. I have suggested contacting local organisations (such as ourselves, Epsom Sports Club etc) so that we can email people directly (like this). She was grateful and will get on to it. Please let me know of any other local organisations with email lists that could be helpful.
  • Because of historic cuts, EEBC hasn't got as robust "work from home" process as many private sector organisations. So, some work has to be done from the Town Hall with appropriate safeguards. Council staff are under extreme pressure so please be considerate in any interaction.
  • Refuse collectors (see below) have been pressing to get PPE and this should now be available to them.

2 - Volunteering and supporting the vulnerable:

  • The Council (and also the Foodbank) have been overwhelmed with offers for support. At present there is no need for further volunteers. I'm involved in a scheme making calls to those on the Vulnerable list to check on their welfare.
  • Police pressure forced the closure of Bourne Hall and Long Grove parks. Kathryn is well aware of the importance of keeping green spaces open, especially for those without gardens. The more we are all sensible, the greater the chance that the Council will be able to open those closed parks.
  • Bonfires have been banned on the allotments because of the impact smoke can have on the vulnerable, so please think before starting your BBQ or own bonfire.
  • Waitrose have I gather been magnificent in helping the Council with meals at home and other support.

2 - Refuse collections:

  • The Green waste collection will restart from Monday 13th. Please leave your bin out as normal but be patient - it might not be collected as promptly as usual
  • There has been an 80% increase in glass collections!
  • Please note the 'Right Thing, Right Bin' message (www.epsom-ewell.gov.uk/right-thing-right-bin). Sorting recyclable materials into the correct bin not only reduces the amount of recycling lost through contamination, but also helps to save the council money as well.

4 - Local health planning:

  • Headley Court should be up and running as additional support next week
  • Epsom Hospital is under pressure but coping.

Other COVID-19 Developments:

  • Not sure I really get the concern over cats…

You can read about developments in other Councils here: https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/UKLGA/bulletins/285b63a

Take care, stay safe, look after people,

Julie & David