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In It Together: How Wokingham Borough is battling Covid-19 as a community

covid 19 coronavirus

The number of Covid-19 cases in our borough is increasing, as it is just about everywhere in the country.

In response to this increase, Wokingham Borough Council is launching our ‘In It Together’ campaign to help everybody keep to the Covid-19 rules and slow the spread of infection. The campaign will focus on how the borough council and its partners are working together to reduce the impact of Covid-19 and how everybody can play a part in this.

Leader of Wokingham Borough Council John Halsall said: “Wokingham Borough Council has been proactive to protect its residents throughout the crisis and our communities and schools have responded magnificently to the challenge Covid-19 has brought. However, we face a threat that is not going away, in fact, it is increasing in our borough as it is elsewhere and so we will re-double our efforts and are calling on all residents to do the same: we are all in this together.”

Since the pandemic began, Wokingham Borough Council has:

  • Sourced its own PPE supplies when the national supply was failing
  • Published the most accurate and comprehensive data on outbreaks available every week
  • Bought an emergency supply of testing kits for use in emergency circumstances if necessary
  • Launched a self-isolation payment scheme to help those eligible people who cannot earn money when told to isolate
  • Worked closely with schools to help them re-open and remain open as safely as possible
  • Stepped up to deliver local contact tracing to support the NHS Test and Trace service (the first authority in Berkshire to volunteer to do so)
  • Worked with businesses to help them operate safely (and acted when they did not follow rules)

As the number of cases rises again, the borough council is working with partners in the voluntary sector to keep the Wokingham Borough Community Response up and running to help those most vulnerable. The council is also writing to those people who were shielded in the spring in order to make sure they have the latest guidance.

The borough council has worked hard with local partners to ensure there are testing sites locally available whenever possible, with units coming to at Cantley Park in Wokingham and Prospect Park in Reading. Tests can be booked via the national website https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test

A mobile testing unit will be located at Cantley Park on October 22 and November 13, 21 and 27.  Attendance at the site will be via appointment/booking only and tests can be booked via the national website https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test.

Testing site availability/booking slots are allocated the day before for morning appointments or in the morning for same day afternoon appointments. If appointments are available at local testing sites they will show up when booking a Covid test via the .gov.uk website.  If no local appointments are available you may be able to book a home testing kit, or find a booking at a nearby regional testing unit (Newbury and Slough).

Cllr Halsall added: “If we all can change our behaviour and observe the rules as a matter of course we may avoid the worst. I am asking everyone to be an evangelist for these rules. In essence the virus is spread through social contact, the more you minimise social contact the less the virus will spread.

“The effort to control Covid-19 and support the vulnerable in the borough has been phenomenal. But the numbers are going up and there are still some people who are not following the rules – and I have to say that they are putting others at greater risk. We must all stick together in this – keep to the social distancing rules and, if you have to isolate, please do so.”

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