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Coronavirus - update: Friday, 20 March

Coronavirus - update: Friday, 20 March

Published by May Norman at 5:52am 20th March 2020. (Updated at 5:18pm 20th March 2020)

Coronavirus pandemic: Friday, 20 March

Stray FM has put together an advice page - which can be found here.

We are also updating this interactive article DAILY, with the latest local information.

Here's what you need to know (this page will be regularly updated):

5:18pm

Ilkley Lido parking charges paused

Parkins charges were due to be introduced at Ilkley Lido from April 1st.  They have been postponed.



5:11pm

Bars, cafes, restaurants, nightclubs ordered the close from tonight. 

The Prime Minister says he is tightening measures which were announced on Monday.  

Boris Johnson is speaking at Downing Street now.  

Gyms, cinemas and leisure centres are also instructed to close.  

5:08pm

Helpline for those in self-isolation

Staff at North Yorkshire County Council will offer telephone support to those in need during the virus outbreak. They'll be on stand from Monday.  The Council has set up a special helpline number which people can call.   

You can read more here.  

4:50pm

Exam results to be given based on teacher assessments

Millions of pupils are finishing lessons in the Stray FM area at the start of a UK-wide shutdown of schools.

GCSE and A-level students will be given grades based on teacher assessments, because the exams have been cancelled.

4:08pm

Henshaws College in Harrogate looking for more staff

A North Yorkshire specialist college which is exempt from the Government’s decision to close educational facilities is now facing a different challenge.

Henshaws Specialist College in Harrogate works with young people with special needs and disabilities.  

The college is not affected by the current school closure requirements.  Henshaws say they now need more people to help out.  

You can read the full article here.  

3:06pm

Bus pass restrictions relaxed 

Restrictions on the use of bus passes in North Yorkshire have been relaxed to help pass holders to take advantage of early morning shopping opportunities and medical appointments. Passes cannot usually be used between 6am and 9am.

North Yorkshire County Councillor Don Mackenzie, Executive Member for Access, said:

“We fully support the Government’s recommendation that people avoid all but essential travel. The purpose of the decision is to enable older residents, those who are disabled and their carers, to use their passes for essential journeys and to take advantage of measures like exclusive early morning shopping opportunities being put in place to support them.

“We expect a positive response from bus operators. We’re also aware that they, like many businesses, are facing difficult times, so this may go some way towards supporting them.”

 

 

2:45pm

Mother Shipton's closing 

It is closing temporarily from today. 

2:24pm

LNER axeing Harrogate services from Monday 

All LNER trains between Harrogate and London will either start or terminate in Leeds after the weekend, the operator has announced.

The train company has reported dwindling passenger numbers and difficulty maintaining staff levels as the coronavirus pandemic continues and thousands of people stay away from public transport.

2:19pm

Harrogate District Hospital: tell us if you are in isolation before attending appointment 

Harrogate District Hospital is urging patients to let them know ahead of an appointment if they are in isolation because of coronavirus concerns.   

The hospital said it should be done via the contact telephone number on their appointment letter.

Robert Harrison, Chief Operating Officer at Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust, said:

“Even when self-isolating or household-isolating, patients may still require care and treatment for other conditions, and we aim to ensure that continues as best as possible in the circumstances. Alternatively, if it is essential that a patient must be seen face-to-face, clinicians will make that decision and can prepare with the appropriate personal protective equipment."

2:15pm

Community pharmacies asking patients not to stockpile medicines 

North Yorkshire Community Pharmacies say they are experiencing exceptionally high demand for medication. They say people are attempting to stockpile medicines.

They're reminding people there are enough medicines, if everyone orders their usual quantities and duration. 

A Community Pharmacy in Harrogate said: 

“Over the counter demand is unprecedented and is drawing resources away from the dispensary which is putting immense pressure on just trying to get the usual dispensing workload done.”

12:18pm

Welcome to Yorkshire asks MPs for more help for local businesses

An open letter has been written by Welcome to Yorkshire to all Yorkshire and the Humber MPs.

It asks for more help for local businesses. 

The letter calls for "urgent action" to help them during the coronavirus outbreak.  

To read it, click here.

 

11:57am

All  Harrogate Borough Council leisure sites to close 

Harrogate Borough Council is closing leisure facilities from tonight.  The buildings will stay closed until further notice.

The council has decided to close its leisure centres, swimming pools, community centres, Turkish Baths, two museums, the Mercer art gallery and tourist information centres.

The decision is in line with updated government guidance after the rapid spread of the virus.

11:41am

Changes to train travel

Train operators will be running reduced timetables across several routes amid a collapse in demand due to coronavirus.

The cuts are down to a decrease in travel and an increase in staffing absence caused by the virus.

11:38am

No food waste

Museums and galleries across Leeds have been doing their bit to help fuel front line staff working hard in the region’s hospitals.

A number of the city’s historic sites took the difficult decision to close their doors earlier this week as part of a city-wide effort to minimise the spread of Coronavirus.

But big-hearted staff at the sites were still determined to offer their support to NHS workers and have teamed up with The Real Junk Food Project to donate food from museums and galleries cafes.

10:05am

Keepie uppie's with a twist

The Stay at Home Challenge is sweeping social media and our very own Harrogate Town are getting involved.

Take a look at Paul Thirlwell's efforts:

9:40am

Red or Green?

I love this idea!

A street is Ripon has gone viral on social media after residents post RED or GREEN cards in windows during the coronavirus outbreak:

8:02am

Let's all celebrate NHS workers!

NHS staff across the UK are working tirelessly to cope with the increased demands during the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.

To say thank you, selected food and hospitality companies including McDonald’s, and Pret a Manger are showing their appreciation by offering free food.

Pret a Manger - free hot drinks

McDonald's - free drinks to NHS workers, emergency services personnel, and health and social care staff

 

7:14am

Local charities facing collapse because of coronavirus

There's a warning that small charities and good causes will collapse because of the coronavirus crisis.

A North Yorkshire charity, which works to beat pandemic superbugs like coronavirus, says it has already lost vital revenue.  

Antibiotic Research UK has also seen fundraisers stopped.   

Peter Gibson, from the charity, says it's having a big impact - to read his full interview, click here.

7:08am

Reduced rail timetable agreed to protect train services and staff

The government has agreed with rail operators they can reduce service levels from Monday following a drop in passenger demand.

The coronavirus outbreak means numbers are down around 70 percent across the UK.

Services will be scaled down progressively across the network and kept under review.

We'll have all the latest travel news on Stray FM.

6:40am

Details on key workers

Those working to provide essential goods and services across Harrogate, Craven and Wharfedale are exempt from the general closure of schools.

The official list of UK personnel who can still send children to school has been revealed.

It includes food delivery drivers, health and social care staff and those in transport.

For the full list, click here.

 

6:13am

More confirmed coronavirus cases

There has been a rise in the number of confirmed coronavirus cases locally.

Two more people have tested positive in North Yorkshire - bringing the total to 13.

Across Leeds, the numbers have risen to 15,  while there are 7 cases in the Bradford district - according to Public Health England.