Coronavirus (COVID-19) - advice, information and help

Coronavirus (COVID-19) information

As the number of cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) in the UK grows, the Council is working closely with Hertfordshire County Council, Public Health England and partners to respond to the situation. 

The government announced a second national lockdown which started from Thursday 5 November 2020. In addition to some existing guidelines, new measures have been introduced and are expected to stay in place for four weeks up to Wednesday 2 December 2020. At the end of the period, the government will revert to a regional tiered approach. 

Complying with the new measures will help limit the spread of coronavirus, reduce the impact on the NHS and save lives. As part of this, the public is being asked to stay at home except for specific authorised purposes including:

  • Childcare/education
  • Work (if working from home is not an option)
  • Exercise/visit to an outdoor space alone, with people from the same household or support bubble. You can also exercise/visit outdoor spaces with one other person who is not from the same household or support bubble (Children under 5, as well as disabled people dependent on round-the-clock care are not counted towards the limit on two people meeting outside)
  • Medical appointments or medical emergencies
  • Shopping for basic necessities
  • Visiting a member of your support bubble/providing care to vulnerable people

Children's playgrounds, parks, open spaces and cemeteries in the Borough of Broxbourne remain open.

Information on which businesses must close is available here.

Further guidance on the above and other national lockdown restrictions is available on GOV.UK.

You can keep up to date with the latest information on coronavirus on the GOV.UK or visit NHS UK for advice and information, or Public Health England.

More information for businesses can also be found on the government’s COVID-19 guidance for employees, employers and businesses page.

Regional tiered approach

From Wednesday 2 December, Hertfordshire will be placed in Tier two: High alert.

Find out what Tier Two means for residents and businesses. 

How the Council is responding to the situation

The Council is monitoring the situation and can reassure residents and businesses that contingency plans are in place that set out how services will operate in the event of disruption to normal business. The Council will seek to continue to deliver day-to-day services although as the virus spreads throughout the community, reduced staffing levels may mean it is not possible to do so. 

The Council has a responsibility to protect the community (especially those who are vulnerable), protect staff and to maintain priority services. The Council has prioritised the following services and will redeploy staff as necessary:

  • domestic refuse collection
  • housing benefits advice service
  • environmental health emergencies
  • temporary accommodation (housing)
  • housing benefits payments
  • burials/cemetery services

Council facilities that are closed

Following the government’s announcement and to protect the public and staff, the following Council facilities are closed to the public until further notice:

  • main Council offices at Bishops' College
  • the One Stop Shop service in Hoddesdon and Waltham Cross
  • the Spotlight Theatre
  • Wormley Community Centre
  • Lowewood Museum
  • the John Warner Sports Centre 
  • the Laura Trott Leisure Centre 
  • the Cheshunt Park Golf Centre 

The Council will keep this under review as the government's guidance changes.

Current guidance from Public Health England

Current advice is that those who are at increased risk of severe illness from coronavirus (COVID-19) should take particular care to follow social distancing measures. This group of people includes those who, for example, are:

  • aged 70 or older (regardless of medical conditions)
  • under 70 with an underlying health condition (i.e. anyone instructed to get a flu jab as an adult each year on medical grounds)
  • pregnant

This is not an exhaustive list.

Wash hands. Cover face. Make space.

There are three simple actions we must all do to keep on protecting each other.

  • Wash hands - keep washing your hands regularly
  • Cover face - wear a face covering in enclosed spaces
  • Make space - stay at least a metre apart

What to do if you have symptoms

Book a test if you have one of the following symptoms: 

  • a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste

To book a test, visit Gov.uk.

How long to stay at home

If you have symptoms of coronavirus or have tested positive for the virus, you will need to stay at home for 10 days.

If you live with someone who has symptoms or who has tested positive, or if you have been contacted by NHS Test and Trace, you will usually need to stay at home for 14 days from the day the first person in the home started having symptoms. More information on how long to self-isolate is available on the NHS website. 

If you live with someone who is 70 or over, has a long-term condition, is pregnant or has a weakened immune system, try to find somewhere else for them to stay for 14 days.

If you have to stay at home together, try to keep away from each other as much as possible.

Free parking for NHS staff, volunteers and social care workers

If you work or volunteer for the NHS or work in social care, the Council will provide you with free parking for the duration of the lockdown. You can register for your free pass by sending an email to parking control from your NHS email address. The email must contain your vehicle registration number. If you do not have an NHS email address, you can send us a letter from your employer as confirmation. 

Email parking control

The parking pass is valid in all Broxbourne Council car parks. 

Directory of car parks

Scams

Action Fraud has reported a 400% increase of coronavirus-related fraud. The majority of these reports are associated with online shopping scams, where people are ordering protective face masks, hand sanitizer and other products, which never have arrived. Fraudsters are sending coronavirus-themed ‘phishing’ emails in an attempt to trick people into opening malicious attachments or revealing sensitive personal and financial details. Do not click on links or attachments in suspicious emails, and never respond to unsolicited messages and calls that ask for your personal or financial details.

There have been reports from other parts of the country of people knocking door-to-door claiming to be from a health authority conducting coronavirus testing as well as other associated scams. Please also look-out for signs that your neighbours are being targeted. There are genuine groups of volunteers providing help during self-isolation, but there have been reports of criminals preying on vulnerable people. Ask for identification from anyone claiming to represent a charity. 

There has also been a recent scam where someone claiming to be a tenant’s Landlord has asked the tenant for early payment of rent as they are suffering financial hardship as a result of the coronavirus. You should be extra vigilant when making payments, especially if you are put under pressure to make the payment. Please double-check that the request is genuine. Please do be wary of attempted scams and keep yourself safe.

Last updated: 6 November 2020.