Council on hand to help people most in need

Civic Centre

As England enters a new month-long lockdown, Runnymede Borough Council staff will be on hand to help local people who are most in need.

The Council's welfare phone calling service, which made more than 40,000 calls to vulnerable residents during the Spring and Summer, will swing into action again.

We will be making calls from Monday to Friday from 9 November throughout the next four weeks to check in on vulnerable people and to provide help or arrange it via the voluntary sector.

Our customer services team is already lined up from today to answer incoming calls from people who need help. Our number is 01932 838383 and the team are available from 8.30am-5pm Monday to Thursday and until 4.30pm on Friday.

Food and shopping

As this lockdown is for a shorter period of time, and shielding is not being introduced by government, we will not be providing a bespoke shopping service, or arranging payment for shopping carried out by volunteers.

> The Council's hot food Meals at Home service will operate throughout lockdown.

Runnymede Foodbank will provide meal packs for people who may need them.

Thanks to dozens of local people who donated to the Mayor's Fund appeal earlier in the year, we have just presented a cheque for £6,900 to Runnymede Foodbank to help volunteers buy in extra goods.

We can advise people in vulnerable groups about ways to get other types of shopping. Supermarkets are arranging priority visits for the vulnerable to reduce inside mixing.

Outdoor sport and exercise

Children's play areas and our parks will remain open throughout the month for exercise, if you use them please maintain social distancing and if you touch anything, clean your hands.

In line with Government advice, we will be cancelling all sports pitch bookings and closing sports courts.

Council housing

We will continue to carry out urgent or emergency repairs to our tenants' homes, if you have a problem, please contact us.

In order to reduce the amount of homes our staff and contractors visit, we'll suspend routine repairs and maintenance during the lockdown period.

Cllr Nick Prescot, Leader of the Council, said: "We proved during the last lockdown that local services provided by people who knew the borough best were most effective, and we will again do what we can to help local people who are in the most need.

"Working together with Runnymede Foodbank and Voluntary Support North Surrey we are absolutely committed to making sure people do not suffer."

People with families nearby or supportive neighbours will hopefully receive help from them first, but where there is no other alternative, we stand ready to play our part."