It is with regret that we must inform residents that the Annual Parish Meeting for West Parley has been cancelled in line with HM Government restrictions placed on gatherings in an attempt to flatten the curve of the spread of the Corona Virus. All Town and Parish Councils have been instructed to cancel ALL meetings until further notice and this includes their Annual Parish Meeting.
Usually, Councillors provide a summary of the Council year and sometimes a speaker is invited to present on specific relevant topics. We had scheduled for a member of the Stour Valley Parks team to attend for this year’s event.
We hope you understand why we have had to take these measures to comply with Government restrictions.
24 March 2020 Important update - gym and play area closed until further notice
Following the Prime Minister's announcement last night ... the play area & gym are now CLOSED until further notice.
As it is not fenced, signs have been put up ... please DO NOT use the facility.
Currently the recreation ground, playing fields & woodland remain open but we urge groups, to stop. The prime minister is giving powers to the police to disperse gatherings. This will be enforced.
23 March 2020 Volunteering and getting support during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak
Vulnerable people Age UK (North, South and West Dorset) are the nominated full Dorset Council area organisation coordinating requests for help with issues relating to loneliness and isolation, or support in accessing items such as food, respite for carers or prescription collection with a huge team of DBS checked staff and volunteers able to assist in all non-direct care requirements. This will include temporary respite for carers who need a wellbeing break or to do essential shopping for their own families. They will also be working with our Adult Social Care teams to support low risk hospital discharge patients settle back into their communities.
Citizen’s Advice Citizens Advice are continuing to provide free, independent and confidential advice and information to residents experiencing hardship in anyway. They have a full range of employees and volunteers who are operating their service from home so are not currently adversely affected by self-isolation. They will continue to offer a full range of advice including help with:
Benefits entitlement and claims
Debt management and budgeting
Employment advice, including Statutory Sick Pay and rights when laid off work
To ease the predicted increased demand for local food banks, Dorset Council have connected with all foodbanks in the Dorset Council area and given an initial support payment of £1000. Work is also underway to ensure they are able to access all the resources they require and to ensure they all will take electronic vouchers to make the ease of getting this food out to our most vulnerable residents as soon as possible. Find your nearest food bank.
Cllr Peter Wharf, Deputy Leader for Dorset Council, has sent a letter to all of Dorset’s major supermarkets asking them to give priority support to:
smaller care home providers finding it difficult to access the supplies that they need to the point that they are now running low on some items;
vulnerable older people and families where children have special health needs and who are self-isolating and are struggling to access food and essential household items;
young carers who need support with shopping;
supporting their local foodbanks with resources;
and accessing supermarkets at the designated “protected times” may not be possible for those older people living rurally and reliant on public transport.
Work is also in progress with Age UK (North, South and West Dorset) and local providers to see how those who are rurally isolated and may not be able to access shops and foodbanks can receive packages.
Public Health Dorset are contacting all pharmacies in the Dorset Council Area to give advice on prescription delivery options. Some selected Dorset Council staff have been redeployed to deliver controlled prescriptions.
Cllr Laura Miller, Dorset Council Portfolio Holder for Adult Social Care and Health said: “We have seen an overwhelming response to COVID-19 from our residents, it is great to see our communities coming together during this difficult and uncertain time.
We are working closely with public sector partners and charities across Dorset to ensure the safety of those who are volunteering their time but also to those most vulnerable. It is important that everyone stays safe and well and I would like to ask residents to keep an eye on our social media channels for further updates and to share within their communities.”
You can find more information on how to access support, registering your interest to volunteer and also guidance for those who are currently volunteering on the Dorset Council Co-ordinated Community Response webpage.
19 March 2020 NeighbourCar - Suspension of Service
In the light of the latest Government advice that persons over 70 should not put themselves at risk by venturing out, the NeighbourCar management Committee have concluded that the service should be suspended for the foreseeable future. Therefore normal operations will cease from Friday 20th March. The committee have only taken this decision after careful consideration and regret very much the need to do so. However, they look forward to being able to resurrect West Parley NeighbourCar sometime in the future, when the present crisis is over.
19 March 2020 Covid-19 Pandemic - Cancellation of all meetings
Please be advised that the Parish Council has followed Government advice during this period of Covid-19 pandemic. After the monthly Parish Council meeting on 18th March 2020, in which social distancing was adhered to, the Council has cancelled ALL meetings for the foreseeable future. All Councils are receiving updates from the National Association of Local Councils (NALC) who are working closely with the Government to ensure Councils are given sufficient power and flexibility to continue to operate.
. The key legislative areas relate to the means of carrying out the Annual Parish Council Meeting in May when all Councillors are appointed, the Annual Parish Meeting for the village which much be held between 1st March and 1st June, and the end of year audit to comply with Audit deadlines of 29th June and 30th September. However, the day to day operation is also affected for example, discussion regarding Planning Applications will now take place through email and the Clerk will submit the response.
Many offices have elected for staff to work from home. Our Clerk already works from home, however will not allow members of the public in her house and is likely to experience a period of self-isolation.
You are welcome to continue walking in the Council’s open space (recreation ground, playing fields, car park and woodland) but please take litter home with you to reduce the need for volunteers to empty the bins. All sporting activity has been terminated in line with Government recommendations.
Please be patient with us during these uncertain times and know that we will keeping the ‘show on the road’ even if it is from the safety of our own homes.