Please note – this information is correct at the time of publishing.
Tuesday, 23 June 2020
The Countywide Co-ordination Hub celebrates its 100-day anniversary – launched by Cambridgeshire County Council and Peterborough City Council to support those most at risk from the coronavirus – today marks its 100-day anniversary (Tuesday 23 June).
The hub launched in March to support residents identified as shielding and being of the highest risk to coronavirus. Currently there are 19,058 people on the shielded list for Cambridgeshire with 7,653 of these receiving regular help from the hub.
Soon after, a network of district and city hubs was launched by the district and city councils, providing help and support to all others who don’t have support from elsewhere.
Together they provide practical support and help for thousands of people across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, providing food, essential supplies and access to medicines, as well as helping resolve issues or carry out simple tasks that would otherwise prevent people from being able to protect themselves from the risks associated with coronavirus.
Since its launch the Countywide Hub has:
Adrian Chapman, service director for communities and safety for Peterborough and Cambridgeshire who is leading the work of the Countywide Hub, said: “It has been an absolute privilege to lead the work of the countywide hub, making sure that people who are at the greatest risk from the coronavirus are protected from harm as far as possible.
“We created the Countywide Hub from scratch at incredible pace, to be able to provide the support that so many of our residents needed at that time and still do. What has been achieved in such a short space of time is truly remarkable.
“None of this would have been possible without the hard work of council staff, many of whom were redeployed into the hub from other council services, our partners including the district and city councils across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough who are delivering vital support services to their own communities, the support from our voluntary, faith and public sector partners and last but not least the 2,500 residents who signed up to volunteer their time to support the work of the hub.
“The feedback we receive from the people we are supporting is what makes it all worthwhile and makes it clear that we are making a difference to so many people in a variety of ways.
“My aspiration now is to make sure we take all of the features of our new ways of working into whatever ‘new normal’ emerges post-Covid-19. The ability to make swift decisions, to collaborate in ways we never thought possible, to share data quickly but safely, and to find very creative solutions to really tricky issues will be no less important beyond the current crisis.”
Councillor Irene Walsh, cabinet member for communities for Peterborough City Council, said: “The pandemic left hundreds of people across Peterborough feeling worried, alone and without help within a very short space of time. It has, and continues to be, an incredibly difficult time for so many residents, but the network of support hubs has lightened the load for so many people.
“Whether it’s providing essential food or medicine to residents, delivering PPE to health settings to allow GPs and pharmacists to continue working, supporting in care homes or simply offering a friendly voice on the other end of the phone, the work we have seen from council staff, partners and volunteers has been phenomenal.
“I would also like to pay tribute to the hundreds of people across Peterborough who continue to show the most fantastic community spirit, supporting people in their communities who need help at this time. Their work too is supporting so many people to stay safe and well.”
Councillor Steve Criswell, Chairman of the Communities and Partnerships Committee, Cambridgeshire County Council, said: “The COVID-19 support hubs continue to be a shining example of what can be achieved when councils work together with their partners and residents for the good of our communities.
“Everyone involved in their work deserves a huge pat on the back for the outstanding service they have provided, and continue to provide, to so many. I am particularly proud of how our communities have stepped up and worked with the council to keep people safe and well.
“Every week the Countywide Hub continues to support more than 4,000 people who are shielding and have asked for help and that figure is rising all the time. We will continue to provide that support so that those who are shielding have the help they need until such a time that their lives are able to return to normal.”
It can also be contacted Monday to Friday from 8am to 6pm, and Saturdays 9am to 1pm on 0345 045 5219.
The district and city councils have information on their websites about the local hubs including how people can get in touch and access help and support.
Details of the many organisations, groups and charities offering support can be found on the Peterborough Information Network or the Cambridgeshire Directory of Services.
Following the government’s announcement last night (Monday), that the 2.2 million people who have been self-isolating in England will no longer need to shield from 1 August. Please find our response below –
Adrian Chapman, Service Director: Communities and Partnerships, Peterborough City Council and Cambridgeshire County Council, said: “We know that the update from Government yesterday (Monday) relating to the pausing of the shielding programme will be met with excitement and anxiety.
“There will be many people who will need help and support to transition out of shielding and to move towards a new way of life, which of course will still include social distancing. For those people, the Countywide Hub will be there to provide that support. In addition, NHS volunteer responders will continue to offer support to those who need it, including collecting and delivering food and medicines.
“The network of district and city hubs will continue to provide support for all others who don’t have help and assistance from friends, family or neighbours. This will be particularly important as part of NHS Test and Trace, to support people who may need help when isolating as a result of having symptoms of coronavirus or because they have been in close contact with someone who is a confirmed case.
“In addition, we will be keeping a record of people who are extremely clinically vulnerable in case the R rate starts to increase and there is a need for people to shield once again.
Stay Active if you’re at risk – A ‘stay active’ campaign to raise awareness among people with a range of long term health conditions that regular physical activity can help decrease the likelihood of contracting coronavirus, as well as benefitting both the mind and body, has launched this week.
Many of us have found ourselves spending increased amounts of time at home and sitting down more than usual since the coronavirus pandemic started. Lockdown has made it hard for people to be as active as normal, and it’s even harder for people who don’t usually do a lot of physical exercise due to existing health conditions.
Protecting residents’ physical and mental health is one of Cambridgeshire County Council and Peterborough City Council’s highest priorities since the outbreak of COVID-19.
Stay Active is reaching out to support people living with health conditions, to keep them safe and well, and encourage them to be active during this time by finding out what works for them. The campaign ties in with We Are Undefeatable – the movement developed by 15 leading health and social care charities, supported by Public Health England.
The two councils’ dedicated web pages (CCC or PCC) have links and advice to inspire people to take steps to begin moving more – to maintain their physical activity or find new opportunities to keep moving whilst in and around the house – with tailored local support and advice.
Taking part in any form of physical activity can help to cope with having to stay at home more. Regular physical activity can help to reduce high blood pressure, manage weight and reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and various cancers – all conditions that can increase susceptibility to COVID-19.
It is also good for our mental health. Regular physical activity reduces the risk of depression, cognitive decline and helps to lift our overall feelings. Being active also helps to give your days a routine and can be a way to stay in contact with family and friends.
Councillor Peter Hudson, Chairman of the Health Committee at Cambridgeshire County Council, said: “It’s really important to keep active while spending more time at home due to the coronavirus lockdown. Whether you’re in your older years or managing a health condition, being active is all about finding what works for you, particularly when the way you feel can change from day to day. Visit www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/stayactive for local advice and tips.
Cllr Wayne Fitzgerald, Deputy Leader of Peterborough City Council and Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Health and Public Health said: “Whether you’re just deciding to start being active or want to try something new, there are some really useful tools and online support available out there. Explore some of the ways you can build movement into your day while genuinely enjoying what you’re doing. Visit www.healthypeterborough.org.uk for some local advice and tips.”
As we navigate the changes to our daily routines due to the pandemic situation, it’s more important than ever to focus on the things that we can do to take care of ourselves and our loved ones. There will be ups and downs, of course – and moving more when you can is as important as accepting when you can’t. No matter what level of activity you find you can manage, it is still very much worth celebrating.
A campaign to get essential items to vulnerable residents across Peterborough during the current lockdown is continuing to prove successful – In conjunction with Peterborough City Council’s on-going efforts to support communities since the coronavirus outbreak, Bainton & Ashton Parish Council launched the Bright Ribbon campaign back in April.
Initially, residents in the two villages donated non-perishable food items by placing them on their doorsteps in shopping bags tied with brightly-coloured ribbon. This was then collected and delivered to the Peterborough food bank where it could be passed on to those in need. Local suppliers Plants Eggs have been generously donating a regular supply of fresh eggs into the scheme
Since then the campaign has proved so successful that is has been rolled out to neighbouring villages Barnack and Ufford, where donation points are located in old-style red telephone boxes.
Councillor Irene Walsh, Peterborough City Council’s cabinet member who helped set up the campaign, said: “We’ve had a fantastic response from residents in the villages who are keen to help those in need. And full credit to Bainton & Ashton Parish Council who supported the scheme from the outset.
“We have been in touch with other parish councils, some of whom were already running schemes of their own and some who were keen to set up their own Bright Ribbon campaign. In Glinton the Good Neighbours Scheme is promoting the food donation point at the NISA store on the High Street. An impressive volunteering scheme is also running in the village, supporting local residents in a variety of ways.
“Currently, the donation points in Bainton and Ashton are two repurposed grit bins, one positioned in .the centre of each village. All donation points are adorned with bright ribbons so that they can be identified
“All in all, a fantastic contribution from Peterborough’s rural areas.”
Cambridgeshire archives team transcribe medieval manuscript from home – Since lockdown began on 23 March, many of us have been adjusting to a new way of working from home.
The team behind the archives service at Cambridgeshire County Council are no different, and have even found some extra time to do longer projects.
Archive Assistant, Corranne Wheeler, has been transcribing medieval manuscript fragments while working at home. The manuscript she is currently working on was bound in one of the Huntingdonshire Parish registers and is one of the only ones of its type in the county.
She said: “I started working on transcribing the manuscript about a year ago, but it’s a difficult task to do in a public search room and requires no distractions. One of the surprising upsides of lockdown has been the chance to do projects such as this, which I would struggle to do when we’re open as normal.
“Medieval manuscripts are my favourite items to work on. There is also a fragment from the same book in the earliest Cottenham parish register. It’s rare to find two separate fragments that have remained so close together – manuscripts have been traded all across the world. For instance, pages originating from Scotland can now be found in Tokyo.
“The manuscript has been digitised so even in lockdown we can continue working on it. Hopefully when it’s finished we’ll be able to put it online.
“Transcribing and digitising fragments is vital to their survival. These are amongst the oldest and most fragile items in our collections. By adapting them into different formats, we can increase the number of people who can see and use them, whilst also reducing the amount the original document needs to be handled. For this record in particular, it would also be lovely to see if anyone else holds more fragments from the same book.”
Cllr Steve Criswell, Chairman of Cambridgeshire County Council’s Communities and Partnership Committee, said: “Usually the archives team work across two record offices where the public can explore thousands of historical documents. It’s an excellent service where our staff can offer help and specialist knowledge to the public and it is a real shame that, like many other services across the country, it’s had to be put on hold during the pandemic. However, it’s wonderful to see our team work on such interesting and unusual projects during lockdown.”
The Archives team have been sharing their experiences of working from home during lockdown on their Instagram page. Click here to visit the page.
You can keep up-to-date with any changes to our services on our websites:
Coronavirus: what you need to do
Socially distance – stay 2 metres (6ft) away from other people
Wash your hands
Anyone can spread the virus.