Work on new bunaglow sites set to start soon

Works on five sites for new bungalows which were delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic are expected to begin within the next three weeks.

We reported previously on the proposals to develop small sites in our area for new properties that will be owned and managed by the Arches Housing Association, but which will provide homes to people who are currently waiting on the council’s housing list.

The sites on Greenwood Crescent, Hornbeam Road, Craig Walk (off Howard Road), and Chestnut Close (two sites) will together see 12 new bungalows built over the course of the next year. The bungalows will meet the needs of elderly people and potentially those with disabilities as well.

Plans to build on the garage site at Willow Close we dropped following our representations and concerns about inadequate parking in the area.

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Coronavirus lockdown rules

From this week, the government has imposed national lockdown rules as the number of people infected with Coronavirus has continued to rise.

The current rules, in place until December 2nd, mean that:

  • Pubs, restaurants, non-essential shops, many leisure facilities, and ‘personal services’ businesses such as hairdressers are required to close
  • You are advised to stay at home as much as possible. Everyone is asked not to socialise with people outside their own households or support bubbles
  • Anyone who can work from home should do so, and reduce their journeys wherever they can

Places of worship are also closed for acts of collective worship, meaning that weddings cannot take place, and there are restrictions affecting funerals.

However, unlike the lockdown earlier this year:

  • Schools and colleges will remain open
  • There are no limits on the time you can take each day for outdoor exercie, and you can exercise with another person so long as you socially distance
  • People who cannot work from home are able to go into work, which means that some businesses and workplaces will continue to operate
  • Public transport will continue to operate
  • Many shops, including pubs, can choose to operate a takeaway only service

You can read the government guidance by clicking here.

With regards to council services, most will continue to operate but with the following exceptions:

  • Leisure centres and swimming pools which must close
  • Some facilities at Rother Valley and Clifton Park, including Clifton Park Museum, are now closed
  • Libraries including Wickersley are operating a call and collect service again
  • Markets will be open for essential retail only
  • Tomorrow’s Remembrance service will take place online – please click here to view this.

This week we saw the possible first evidence in a slowdown in the number of people infected with Coronavirus in Rotherham following the introduction of recent restrictions. However, we still saw more than 1,300 residents testing positive across the borough, which is hundreds more than only a few weeks ago, and puts Rotherham amongst the worst affected places in the country. Of particular concern it seems that the number of older people falling ill is still continuing to rise.

Last week there were more than 130 patients in Rotherham Hospital suffering from Covid-19 – which is nearly twice as many as at the highest point during the first wave. The number of patients has decreased a little since then, but this continues to affect other services.

Sadly the number of people who have died from Coronavirus in Rotherham continues to rise, and now stands at over 380.

We continue to do all that we can as your local team to support people through these difficult times, including supporting the Sunnyside Supplies scheme making sure that everyone can get food. Our Rotherham Heroes scheme has kept running throughout and is being stepped up to support those identified as “clinically extremely vulnerable” – if you are one of those people you will receive a letter through the post from the council. If you need help, please don’t hesitate to contact the team.

We are also working to ensure that local businesses can access financial support to get them through the current time, and more information about this will be posted on the council’s website in the coming days.

As we have throughout, we would urge you to check the council’s Coronavirus information regularly, and to sign up for the email newsletters at: www.rotherham.gov.uk/coronavirus.

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Lidget Lane recycling centre now open seven days a week

Cllr Emma Hoddinott at Lidget Lane

From this weekend, all of Rotherham’s Household Waste Recycling Centre will be open seven days a week, delivering on a commitment made by Labour councillors earlier this year.

In our council budget in February we set out plans for a £1.7 million investment to help keep the streets clean, which included seven day opening of the sites. Despite everything that’s happened since then we’ve been determined to deliver on this.

During the winter months Lidget Lane will now be open between 10am and 4pm every day. During summer opening hours will be 10am to 6.30pm.

We hope that the additional opening hours will help to assist with pressure on the sites where social distancing measures are still required to keep everyone safe during Covid – something we hadn’t seen coming back at the start of this year! For more information please click here.

Cllr Emma Hoddinott is pictured above visiting the site yesterday to speak with management from FCC, the company who operate the sites on behalf of the council.

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Stepping up to provide free school meals

Food provided to local families by Sunnyside Supplies this year during the pandemic.

This week during the half term holidays, our Labour council has been providing vouchers in lieu of free school meals to families across the borough.

Councillors have stepped in after the Tory government refused calls to provide additional food, following the campaign led by the footballer Marcus Rashford.

Supermarket vouchers to the value of £15, funded by the council, are being distributed via schools. More than 10,000 children across the Rotherham borough including those in our area are benefitting.

Labour councillors had previously called on all our borough’s MPs to support free school meals through this holiday. The Conservative MP for Rother Valley ignored the call. You can read more by clicking here.

People of all ages in our area facing financial hardship or who are unable to get food continue to be supported by the Sunnyside Supplies scheme. If you or someone you know need help you can find out more here.

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Help us to find the resident of the month

Every day people are doing amazing things: helping neighbours, acts of kindness, or keeping going in the face of adversity – especially at the moment.

As part of our Neighbourhoods work, as your councillors we want to recognise this, and we will be giving you the chance to highlight the work of a resident – someone that does not normally get recognised, or thank someone who has gone out of their way to help you.

This is your chance to nominate someone to be our resident of the month. A chance to share their story and we will provide them with a token of everyone’s appreciation.

To nominate please e-mail our RMBC Neighbourhood Co-ordinator Claire Moseley at claire.moseley@rotherham.gov.uk with the following information:

  • the nominee’s name
  • where they live
  • any contact details
  • a summary of the impact the person has made

Please add as much information as you can so that we can share all of their wonderful work and send them a special something.

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