Date issued: 24 March 2020
Following the Prime Minister’s announcement last night (23 March) of stronger measures to tackle the spread of the coronavirus, the Leader of the Council, Cllr Mark Cory, and the group leaders of the Liberal Democrat, Labour, Conservative and Highwoods Independent groups, Cllr Martin Goss, Cllr Tina Bourne, Cllr Robert Davidson and Cllr Gerard Oxford, have issued the following joint statement…
“Last week, the council announced it was closing most of its public buildings following government advice on mass gatherings and that it was stepping up its COVID-19 plans to maintain essential frontline services and support the most vulnerable in our community.
“Following the Prime Minister’s latest announcement of more curbs on normal life to halt the spread of the virus, we would like to remind residents that there will be no public access to any of the council’s buildings for the foreseeable future. This includes Rowan House, the Town Hall, Colchester Castle, Leisure World and the Community Hub.
“The latest restrictions require people to stay at home, except in very limited circumstances – which we fully support. That means self-isolating and socially distancing yourself for at least the next three weeks, unless it is necessary to go outside for very limited purposes.
“As leaders from across the political spectrum, and on behalf of the council serving almost 200,000 residents in the borough, we urge all of you to do the right thing, to stay safely at home and continue to play your part in stemming the tide of infection.
“Thanks to the dedication and hard work of our staff, the council is continuing to actively manage its response to the developing situation and safely deliver the critical services – including waste, customer support, benefits advice, cemetery and crematorium services, and help for tenants – that our residents rely on.
“But we have also been enormously heartened and inspired by the response so far of individuals and groups who have stepped forward to support some of the most isolated and vulnerable residents within our community.
“Please stay up to date with the latest news, advice and guidance on the council’s response to the coronavirus by visiting https://www.colchester.gov.uk/coronavirus
“Residents are also advised to visit the council’s website or call 01206 282222 if they need advice and support, while they adjust to life under these tight new restrictions.
“Stay at Home. Protect the NHS. Save Lives.”