|Gradual move out of lockdown|
From this week, as part of the government’s ‘road map’ out of lockdown, we can move from ‘staying at home’ to ‘staying local’.
This means that travel should still be minimised, everyone should continue to work at home if you can, and holidays are still not allowed, but we can now meet people from one other household in an outdoor space, including gardens.
Outdoor sport and leisure facilities have also re-opened.
If you’ve been shielding, this is no longer necessary, although government advice is that you should still continue to work from home if you can.
It can be tempting to think that lockdown is over, but it is still really important for everyone to follow the current rules, avoid going into other people’s homes, wear masks when required, wash hands regularly and to keep a social distance from people from other households.
If the vaccination programme continues to go well and infection rates do not put unsustainable pressure on the NHS, the government’s plan is that we will gradually move out of lockdown over the next few months.
|Extended hours for two testing venues as two others close|
Two venues used for Wigan Borough’s Covid-19 targeted testing programme (for anyone without Covid symptoms), will have extended hours from next week.
The move comes as two sites previously used for testing will close as we prepare for the reopening of the buildings’ usual facilities in line with the government’s roadmap.
Progress House, Wigan, and Leigh South Community Centre will be open 9am to 6pm on weekdays from Tuesday, April 6.
These sites will continue to open on Saturdays, also with extended hours (9am to 2pm).
Golborne Library and Standish Leisure Centre will close at 3.30pm on Thursday, April 1, and will not reopen for testing purposes.
All testing for those without symptoms will be closed over the Easter Weekend.
To get more information on the criteria needed to book a test if you don’t have symptoms, and to book an appointment, click here.
If you do have symptoms you should book a test through the national online system here or by calling 119.
|This week’s Covid-19 tracker shows:|
Wigan Borough’s rate of infection is 94 per 100,000 – higher than regional & national rates
As of 30 March, there were 20 COVID-positive patients in WWL hospitals – an increase6 COVID–19 deaths were registered in Wigan in the latest week – a decrease.
|Local vaccination programme update|
More than 100,000 people in Wigan Borough have now received their first vaccine and more than 7,000 people have received their second.
A big thank you to everyone who has come forward for their vaccine so far and to all the staff and volunteers at the vaccine centres.
Please take up your vaccination appointment as soon as you are invited to do so.
|Nominate your community hero|
Local heroes across Wigan Borough will be recognised at an awards ceremony in June.
The Our Town awards will celebrate all those who regularly go above and beyond to make their neighbourhood a better place.
The awards were postponed during the Covid-19 pandemic, but nominations have now re-opened, and everyone is invited to nominate someone who has been a community hero to you.
In response to the extraordinary lengths individuals and community groups have gone to during the pandemic, a new ‘Covid-19 superheroes’ category has been added.
You have until midnight on Sunday 25 April to submit your online nomination.
The awards ceremony will be held virtually during Volunteer Week in June. Further details will be announced following the closing date.
|Town centres to get a makeover|
A community initiative to spruce up the borough’s town centres will begin next month, starting in Ince.
In 2020, we pledged £600,000 to improve town centres as part of the Our Town programme, following the Deal 2030 consultation, when residents told us that this should be a priority.
The improvement programme had to be postponed due to the pandemic but it will resume in April and 12 areas will now get a deep clean and also see improvements including enhanced road maintenance, more bins, and the installation of new trees and flowers.
An additional £400,000 has been added to the programme this year, bringing the new investment total to £1 million.