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Coronavirus - update: Wednesday, 27 May

Coronavirus - update: Wednesday, 27 May

Published by May Norman at 7:12am 27th May 2020. (Updated at 5:18pm 27th May 2020)

Coronavirus pandemic: Wednesday, 27 May

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

RSPCA facing 'cat crisis' in North Yorkshire 

The RSPCA says it has received 71 reports about cats in North Yorkshire since the lockdown began.  Across the country, there have been 6,630 incidents reported to the charity’s hotline.

As the kitten season gets underway, the charity warns it could see an influx of even more as unneutered cats give birth to unwanted litters

The RSPCA is facing a 'cat crisis' -  as the charity cares for more cats than any other pet.

Dr Samantha Gaines, head of the RSPCA’s companion animal department, said:

“We are currently caring for more cats than any other pet throughout the Coronavirus crisis.

"Every year, the scale of the cat overpopulation problem becomes even more apparent from May to September when most cats are born as the RSPCA is often overwhelmed with kittens. The kitten season this year will continue despite COVID-19 and so the charity is bracing itself for even more cats.”

 

 

4:48pm

Economic recovery plan for Harrogate 

Harrogate Borough Council will next month unveil the first steps of its plan to drive the district’s economic recovery.

The council has set up a “task force” to manage the town's economic recovery from the pandemic. 

There are also plans to regenerate parts of the town centre. 

You can read more here.  

4:34pm

Two more coronavirus deaths in Stray FM area 

Two more coronavirus deaths have been confirmed in the Stray FM area.  

One was a patient at Airedale Hospital and the other at Harrogate Hospital.   

The total number of confirmed reported deaths in hospitals in England is now 26,049.

You can read more here.  

4:25pm

Roads surface dressing programme underway in Craven 

Essential road maintenance is well underway in Craven as part of the annual summer programme of surface dressing. 

This work prolongs the life of miles of road in North Yorkshire and is taking place at locations across the district.

The surface dressing programme forms part of the essential roads maintenance North Yorkshire County Council continues to deliver during the Covid-19 outbreak - to ensure that key workers who need to travel to provide crucial services or deliver vital food and other supplies can do so.

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

“Surface dressing is a very quick and economical treatment to seal the road surface in order to prevent the ingress of water which damages the structure of the highway, it improves traction and restores to the road a consistent appearance after earlier patching by utility companies and their contractors.

“It is important that the standard of our roads is maintained to support the NHS staff, social care workers, teachers, delivery drivers, bus operators and others providing essential services. The fact that traffic levels are still very low means our work can be carried out quickly, efficiently and with little disruption."

 

 

3:41pm

Harrogate Hotel sees surge in hotel bookings following TV programme

Harrogate hotel The Yorkshire has seen a significant spike in website traffic following their TV debut on Channel 4s current series ‘A very British hotel chain: inside Best Western’, which aired last night.

The programme which follows the life of Best Western’s head office team and some of the groups membership properties for three weeks, featured The Yorkshire last night with key members of the team Simon Cotton, Managing Director and two of the housekeeping team Anita Dover and Julie Wells all featuring in the programme.

The episode showcased The Yorkshire Hotel’s journey as they joined Best Western as a member of the affiliation hotel group. The airtime has caused a positive effect on web traffic and bookings with a significant spike of 1,274% compared to the day before and a 181% increase year on year in website traffic with a surge in bookings from August to the end of the year.

Simon Cotton said:

“Life in hospitality is always entertaining so I am not surprised Channel 4 has embraced the industry with this programme. The Yorkshire Hotel is such a focal point in Harrogate and is set right in the heart of the town. We filmed the programme last year before Covid-19 so you will see a very different side to where we are today – a side I am looking forward to getting back to.”

 

3:38pm

See a GP if you are worried about cancer symptoms 

People in the Harrogate district are being urged to see their GP if they are worried about symptoms that might be cancer

Since the start of the coronavirus pandemic there has been a significant reduction in the number of people locally going to their GP with their concerns. 

Cancer specialists at Harrogate District Hospital are seeing a significant drop in the number of people being referred to them by GPs for initial urgent appointments, under what is known as two-week referral. Clinicians usually see about 190-200 urgent suspected cancer referrals per week through two-week referrals, but during the past couple of months this has dropped as low as 60 patients per week.

Numbers of patients being referred for appointments is rising again, but the concern is that not everyone is getting in touch with their GP. 

Dr Charles Parker, NHS North Yorkshire CCG Clinical Chair, said:

“Cancer hasn’t gone away. There will still be people in our community experiencing signs and symptoms of cancer such as the sudden appearance of a lump, blood in their urine, or a change to usual bowel habits. It is vital these people contact their GP practice so a doctor can investigate and refer to a specialist if necessary."

 

 

2:33pm

Camilla joins Roald Dahl recording

The Duchess of Cornwall has put her storytelling skills to the test, joining a star-studded cast to record a special version of a Roald Dahl classic.

Camilla features in the latest episode of a recording of the children's story James and the Giant Peach put together by the Roald Dahl Story Company, narrated by filmmaker and actor Taika Waititi.

The series, which appears on the Roald Dahl YouTube channel is raising money for organisations helping those affected by COVID-19.

Read the full story here

2:18pm

Chef warned of 'child labour' after family help with meals for NHS

A Michelin-starred chef whose entire family have spent lockdown making thousands of free meals for NHS workers has been sent a warning letter about child labour by his local council.

Mildred Pern, three, posed for pictures with her six smiling brothers and sisters in the kitchen of dad Andrew Pern's award-winning Star Inn restaurant in Harome, North Yorkshire.

But a child employment officer from North Yorkshire County Council was less than impressed, sending Mr Pern a letter:

"It has been brought to my attention that there were children helping out in your commercial kitchen."

Read the full story here

1:48pm

Yarndale Festival cancelled

The  Yarndale festival in Skipton has been forced to cancel their event due to the ongoing battle against Coronavirus.

The festival was supposed to take place over the weekend of 26th and 27th September, but organisers are now looking at ways to hold it digitally instead.  

The festival had been expected to attract up to 8,000 visitors to Skipton, with organisers left feeling “hugely disappointed” that the event would not go ahead as planned.

Read the full story here

1:01pm

FA grants National League extension

Harrogate Town's National League campaign may not be over just yet, as the Football Association (FA) have granted the league an extension to their season.

The decision means playoffs beyond the original deadline of the end of May can now be played, although it does not mean they will definitely take place.

The National League is yet to offer clubs a vote on how to end the season, with potential solutions possibly excluding playoffs or making the season null and void.

12:45pm

Ripley Show cancelled

Organisers have announced that this year's Ripley Show will be cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

Chair of the show Michael Smith has taken to social media to announce the sad news, but is looking ahead to next year when it will take place once again at Ripley Castle.

The show is the latest to fall victim to the current crisis:

12:41pm

Plea from North Yorkshire police

With the sunshine starting to become more regular, North Yorkshire Police are urging people to adhere to the rules around social distancing and what you can or can't do.

The force are expecting to see people visiting hotspots and taking to the countryside for their daily exercise, but also want those people to remember the rules during the Coronavirus pandemic:

9:50am

ICYMI: Nidderdale Show 2020 cancelled

Yesterday it was announced that this year's Nidderdale Show, which attracts around 15,000 people each year, has been cancelled.

The management committee say safety at the show is paramount, and it won't be possible to run the event safely this September, therefore the show will next take place in September 2021.

Read the full story here

9:43am

Harrogate SOP recognised with grant

Harrogate Supporting Older People (SOP) have been working tirelessly throughout the Coronavirus crisis to ensure elderly and vulnerable people are able to access essential items during lockdown.

And now the charity have been recognised for their fantastic work with a £10,000 grant from The National Lottery Community Fund!

Fantastic work and very well deserved!

9:30am

Harrogate widower's isolation fundraiser

A Harrogate man is running in isolation as part of a 2020 half marathon challenge in memory of his wife, Georgie, who died of lung cancer aged just 37.

Chris Gatenby is fundraising in Georgie's memory for the Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation by running a half marathon every month, whilst adapting his runs to stick to social distancing guidelines.

Chris also wants to challenge the misconceptions around lung cancer after his wife, an active, non-smoking 37-year-old, died of the disease.

Read the full story here

9:14am

Bishop receives death threats

The bishop of Ripon is among other senior bishops who criticised Dominic Cummings' lockdown travel and have since received death threats as a result.

Helen-Ann Hartley shared the shocking news on Twitter after discovering bishops in Newcastle and Liverpool also received the same warnings.

Bishop of Worcester John Inge said he got an email saying: "Stay out of politics or we'll kill you" - with bishop of Newcastle Christine Hardman claiming she received a similar message.

Bishop Hartley reported a similar threat via email, saying: 'Stay out of politics or it will be the death of you'.

Read the full story here

9:01am

Final Harrogate Scrubbers delivery

Community group Harrogate Scrubbers have now provided NHS staff at Harrogate District Hospital with over 2,000 scrubs after delivering their final batch last night.

The group noticed the national shortage in scrubs during the Coronavirus crisis and so began sewing, whilst also making gowns, scrub hats, and scrub bags.

A great story that shows the true power of community!

Read the full story here

8:00am

Warning over BBQs in Dales or Moors

Firefighters in North Yorkshire are issuing more warnings about having a BBQ on the Yorkshire Dales or Moors.

The warm weather we've been experiencing is fantastic for us all but it means the ground is extremely dry which means fires can spread quickly.

This is one of the latest warnings from the fire and rescue service:

7:44am

Drive through testing unit back on Jennyfields

Key workers and their households can have a COVID-19 test in Harrogate today (Wednesday, 27 May).

A drive-through testing centre has returned to the Hydro car park.

BUT appointments do need to be made prior to arrival - you can't just turn up for a test.

Details on how to book an appointment, click here.

7:42am

More fines issued for breaking COVID-19 regs

North Yorkshire Police handed out 52 fines for breaching coronavirus restrictions over the bank holiday weekend.

Four were in Harrogate and a further two in Craven.

Breaching the regulations included overnight stays in motorhomes, door-to-door selling, and groups of people from different households drinking in public areas.

Click here to read more.