Wigan Borough’s remarkable community spirit and resilience in response to the coronavirus pandemic has again been praised. It comes as this week marks a full year since the first official cases of Covid-19 were recorded in the borough.
With the rollout of vaccinations progressing significantly and testing capabilities expanding, Wigan Council’s most senior figures are urging residents to ‘#BeKind and keep going’.
Leader of the Council, Coun David Molyneux, said: “We continue to be in awe of the community spirit that has helped us through some of the most challenging periods in living memory. “Our teams and partner organisations have shown great dedication, going the extra mile during this crisis. We must carry on down this path and not undo all of the progress we have made together.”
It was announced in December that Wigan Council will lay a permanent honour for all health, social care and frontline staff later this year. The star awards will be placed in Believe Square, Wigan, and outside Leigh Town Hall at an appropriate time.
Alison Mckenzie-Folan, chief executive of Wigan Council, said: “I am so proud of how our borough has been united through community spirit and courage. “A year on from our first cases, there is light at the end of the tunnel but I would urge everyone to keep thinking of others and be kind as we still have some way to go.”
Working alongside health service colleagues, council officers have provided support for residents, businesses and the community and voluntary sector while maintaining frontline, essential services. From establishing community hubs in the early stages of lockdown and working around the clock to ensure business grants were allocated, they currently support the targeted testing at scale programme and the vaccination rollout, among a whole host of other duties.
Last year a call for volunteers was answered by hundreds of residents and many council staff were redeployed to support the pandemic response effort. Coun Molyneux said: “It truly has been a remarkable team effort and we would like to thank each and everyone single person who has contributed, they have all played their part. “Please continue to follow the public health guidelines and adhere to the restrictions as they are eased over the coming months. “We must all do our bit to make sure we stay on track.”