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Coronavirus York updates; 17th June 2021

Hospital patients and deaths

Hospital patient numbers stable. No further deaths

Test results

There were 41 positive test results announced today. This brings the cumulative total up to 12,716

There were 32 positive tests on Tuesday. That is the highest single day figure seen since 9th February 2021

The number of cases in the City has risen to 144.

The rate /100k population has risen to 67.9. It is now trending to reach 82.6.

Neighbourhoods

Vaccinations

A total of 704 vaccinations were completed yesterday (Wednesday)

The vaccination numbers by age group and neighbourhood have been updated by the government

The area with the highest percentage of first doses is Wigginton (95.2%). The lowest is still Tang Hall (46.1%) although this is up from the 43.9% recorded at the end of the previous week.

The area with the highest percentage of second doses is Haxby (72.8%). The lowest is Tang Hall (29.1%)

Neighbourhood vaccination rates at 13th June 2021

Tests

  • The number of PCR tests completed in the City during the week ending 12th June was 5219
  • Of these, 2.4% were positive. That is more than the 2.2% found during the previous period.
  • 3272 “lateral flow” tests were also completed on 16th June.

3 weekly bin emptying – Council retreat

The Council has abandoned its proposal to empty green bins, and collect recycling, every 3 weeks.

The Councils waste collection service has been heavily criticised over the last few weeks with a lack of HGV drivers blamed for erratic, and sometimes non existent, collections.

The decision on less frequent collections comes in the wake of a survey of residents views and priorities.

The Council failed to ask residents whether they favoured the 3 weekly plan but the majority of respondents said that they were happy with the current arrangements.

Poll results. Click for full list https://democracy.york.gov.uk/documents/s150609/Annex%201%20Results%20-%20Recycling%20Changes.pdf

Several said that they would prefer, instead of boxes, to have another wheeled bin in which to store glass, metals plastic. This hasn’t been taken up by the Council but they do say that recyclables (not paper) can now be mixed in the two baskets already provided for many residents.

The Councils Executive are now being asked to agree to proposals for the procurement of a new low emission fleet of recycling vehicles. They will also consider a proposal to start garden waste collections a month earlier. They currently start in April to the end of November, but under new proposals would start in March (beginning from March 2022).

The Executive will also consider “the cleaner and safer option of introducing of wheeled bins or other arrangements to around 6,200 properties (which currently use black bags for non –recyclable waste), predominantly in the Micklegate, Guildhall, Clifton, Holgate and Heworth wards.  This will be taken to a future decision session of the Executive Member for Environment and Climate Change”.

“Changes planned include extending garden waste collections, so we can collect green bins earlier, introducing bags to bins to 6,200 properties, allowing residents to mix glass, cans and plastics in boxes to provide more flexibility, and introducing new and more efficient waste vehicles”.  

Following Executive approval, residents will be able to recycle all materials together apart from paper and cardboard. Meaning, glass, cans and plastics can be placed in the same box (2 boxes per household). This is because the council had to adapt during the Covid pandemic and worked with its waste contractor at the facility to separate plastic, tins and glass. This emerged as a more efficient way of collecting recycling. It has not changed the way the materials collected are recycled and has been a useful pilot. 

The Executive are being asked to consider that the consultation responses from residents across the city should inform the council’s response to the Government’s consultation.  If approved, further options will be considered at a later decision session. 

As the council’s 6-week consultation (30 March to 11 May) was coming to a close, the Government launched a national consultation on the ‘Consistency in Household and Business Recycling in England’, looking at wide ranging and ambitious changes to the future of recycling in the UK.

In addition to this, further details on the Environment Bill, which makes clear the Government’s intentions to potentially pay councils as part of mandatory weekly food collection, as well as introduce other significant changes to waste collection from 2024 to 2025, were released on 12 May.

Until the Environment Bill is passed and further details emerge from the national recycling consultation, there will remain a significant amount of uncertainty over what councils will need to do and by when.

A report will be taken to the Executive on 24 June at 5.30pm, the report can be read online ahead of the meeting, which will be livestreamed and can be watched online live, or afterwards. 

Coronavirus York updates; 16th June 2021

Hospital patients and deaths

One fewer hospital patient today. No more deaths.

Vaccinations

Those aged over 21 can now book an appointment for a vaccination. Coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination – NHS (www.nhs.uk)

A total of 1023 vaccinations were completed in the City yesterday (Tuesday)

Test results

Twenty six positive test results today bring the cumulative total up to 12,675

The number of cases in the City has increased from 116 to 133

The rate /100k population is now 63.15.

That is the highest rate seen since 28th February 2021. The rate is trending to reach 78 over the weekend. (The peak rate seen this year was the 671 on 8th January).

Infection rates in York are rising more sharply at present than is being seen at county and national levels. There was similar trend last autumn

Neighbourhoods

Tests

  • 5389 PCR tests were conducted during the week ending 11th June
  • Of these, 2.2% were found to be positive. That represents an increase on the 2.0% positivity found during the previous period
  • In addition, 2024 “lateral flow” tests were also conducted on 15th June.

Council public service turmoil

The York Council is coming in for more criticism as – for the second day running – waste, recycling and green bin collection arrangements failed yesterday.

Residents were advised to leave out their bins but most remain unemptied.

Officially the Council’s excuse is that there is a shortage of HGV drivers. That has been true since BREXIT saw some drivers return to their homelands although other pressures have resulted from COVID absences and increasing numbers of jobs in the commercial delivery sector.

The actual HGV training (practical) only takes 5 days but the entire process from start to end will take around 8-10 weeks to get the licence in hand.

Usually employers pay for the training in return for a guarantee that the driver will stay with the company/authority for a minimum contract period.

Some HGV drivers can earn up to £45.000 a year. There are an estimated 500,000 vacancies for HGV drivers in the UK.

The Council first identified a shortage of HGV drivers in November 2018 click.

It appears to have made little progress in the interim to ensure that vacancies can be covered.

In the meantime, it needs to be more proactive in telling residents when they can expect to have their waste collected.

If necessary, auxiliary “bring” sites should be established for green waste.

It is not just refuse collection failings which are causing concerns.

Many sports fields and play areas have not had the grass trimmed for several weeks. The neglect runs contrary to the Council s policy of tackling obesity and encouraging healthy lifestyles. When they are eventually cut, mounds of cuttings blight the parks and amenity spaces.

Weeds are now growing rapidly in many gutters. The spraying contractors got off to an early start this year but standards have gradually declined as the summer growing season has got into full swing. Where gutters have not been swept properly, weeds are now reaching a metre or more in height. Again the Council have failed to tell residents when they can expect to see their streets treated,

The promised rain later this week, will see more rapid growth in grass, weeds and bushes. Many of the latter are already obstructing footpaths.

The Council web site confirms that they cut grass “every two to three weeks”

Coronavirus York updates; 15th June 2021

Government advice

Although York is not yet classed as an area where the Delta strain of the virus is most prolific, here is some advice from the government.

The new COVID-19 variant (known as Delta) spreads more easily than the other variants that were previously most common. To help stop the spread, you should:

  • Get both doses of the vaccine when you are offered it, and encourage others to do so as well
  • Participate in surge testing in your local area, whether you are vaccinated or not
  • Self-isolate immediately if you have any symptoms of COVID-19 (a high temperature, a new, continuous cough or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste) or if you’ve tested positive for COVID-19

You should also take particular caution when meeting anyone outside your household or support bubble. Wherever possible, you should try to:

  • Meet outside rather than inside where possible
  • Keep 2 metres apart from people that you do not live with (unless you have formed a support bubble with them), this includes friends and family you don’t live with
  • Minimise travel in and out of affected areas

The full government advice can be viewed by clicking here

York hospital patients and deaths

The York Hospital Trust has recorded its first COVID-19 death since 20th April. The fatality occurred on Friday. It brings the total number of deaths up to 593 since the start of the pandemic

The number of coronavirus patients being cared for by the Trust has increased to 6

The latest figures, covering the deaths’ of York residents, reveal that there was one fatality in a care home during the week ending 4th June.

The death brings the total toll among York residents, since the pandemic started, up to 379. This included (at 4th June) 221 hospital deaths, 128 in care homes, 22 at home and 8 in a hospice.

Test results

21 positive test results were announced today. Brings the cumulative total up to 12,649

The number of cases in the City has risen from 108 to 116

The rate /100k population has risen to 55.08. That is the highest rate recorded since 27th February 2021.

It is trending up to reach over 70+ before the end of the week

Neighbourhoods

Only 5 neighbourhoods now have fewer than 3 cases.

A big step up in case numbers is expected over next three days

Vaccinations

874 vaccinations were completed in the City yesterday (Monday)

Tests

  • 5319 PCR tests were conducted during the week ending 10th June 2021
  • Of these, 2.0% were positive. That is an increase on the 1.9% found during the previous period.
  • In addition, 3044 “lateral flow” tests were also completed on 14th June.

York Council reacts to announcement about continuing restrictions

City of York Council have responded following the Prime Minister’s announcement relating to the delayed easing of COVID-19 restrictions.

Councillor Keith Aspden, Leader of City of York Council said:

We know today’s news is frustrating for many who had high hopes for next week, however, there are still reasons to be optimistic. The vaccine rollout is continuing successfully and many of our local businesses have reopened safely giving us all the chance to once again enjoy so much that our city has to offer. Hopefully soon, with more people vaccinated, we will be able to take that next step safely.

“Throughout this pandemic, communities across York have come together and worked hard to look after each other. It has been a long and challenging period for us all, but I would encourage everyone to please keep going. Better times are ahead, as more of us get first and second doses of the vaccine.

“We are pleased though to see changes in the numbers allowed to attend weddings and civil partnership ceremonies, where social distancing measures allow. This will make a huge difference to many couples having their special day. Our Register Office will continue to support couples and will be contacting those who have booked ceremonies with us with further details. We will share more details when the guidance is published.

“We know this is difficult news for people and businesses who will be most directly impacted by this announcement. We will continue to support you, as we have done throughout the pandemic, and we will share more updates as guidance and information becomes available. Please continue to shop at local businesses who are working so hard to keep people safe.

“If you’re struggling to manage, or you don’t have any support, but need it because of COVID-19, please get in touch by emailing covid19help@york.gov.uk or calling telephone: 01904 551550. Businesses severely impacted by today’s announcement can get contact us by emailing the council’s Economic Growth team at economicgrowth@york.gov.uk.”

Fiona Phillips, Assistant Director of Public Health said:

Whilst today’s news is disappointing, with increasing cases and hospital admissions across the country and the presence of the delta variant, it isn’t surprising.

“In recent days we have seen cases increase across York – it is vital that we all remain vigilant and keep each other safe.

“This has been a challenging time, but please keep going and check in on friends and family who may be struggling. Help is at hand should people need it and it is important we look after our mental health as well as physical health.

“Whilst the vaccine roll out is going very well, many in the city are yet to have the vaccine and get that protection. We know too with the delta variant how important a second dose is to boosting immunity so please when you get invited get both doses. Please help keep each other safe and the city open by continuing to:

  • wash your hands regularly
  • wear a face covering in busy public spaces and where asked
  • give people space
  • meet outside, or open windows letting fresh air indoors
  • get tested regularly; see more information about symptom-free testing
  • get the vaccine when you are eligible and get that second dose; See more information and book an appointment on the NHS website

“The vaccines are working and saving lives. This and the fact they are being administered in great numbers means that better times are ahead. The slowing of the roadmap gives the opportunity for more people to be protected in the hope we can have a great and safe summer.”

Acomb Explore Under 5’s Storytime

Image result for children's stories images

Thursday 17th June 2021

10:30am

Acomb Explore Library, Front Street

Stories and songs at Acomb Explore

Join us for stories, songs and rhymes at this socially distanced event. This is suitable for under 5’s with and accompanying adult. Each ticket is for 1 adult with children age under 5 years old.

Register for this free event (click)

Coronavirus York updates; 14th June 2021

Hospital patients and deaths

Number of COVID-19 patients being cared for by the York Hospital Trust has increased to 5. There are currently no patients in the intensive care unit.

There have been no further deaths

Test Results

Twenty positive test results announced today. Brings the cumulative total up to 12,628

The number of cases in the City has risen to 108. This pushes the area into a higher infection band. The City last had this high a number of infections at the beginning of March.

The rate /100k population has risen to 51.28. This is the highest infection rate seen in the City since 28th February 2021. The rate continues to trend upwards and will reach 66.5 later in the week.

York remains below the national and regional infection rate levels but case numbers are increasing rapidly

Neighbourhoods

There has been a rise in infection levels in the Tang Hall area This neighbourhood has a large number of student dwellings.

Vaccinations

1743 vaccinations were undertaken in the City yesterday (Sunday)

Tests

  • 5353 PCR tests were conducted during the week ending 9th June.
  • Of these, 1.9% were positive. That is a significant increase on the 1.6% found during the previous period.
  • In addition, 3384 “lateral flow” tests were also conducted on 13th June.

Changes to rules

In the light of new information which indicates that even some double vaccinated people have been admitted to hospital suffering from the new COVID-19 strain, most current restrictions are likely to remain in place. In York, 25% of adults have still to receive their first dose of vaccine.

No local figures have been released indicating how many of the positive test results have involved double vaccinated residents.

Similarly there has been no information provided on how transmission is taking place, although nationally it appears that contact in the home remains the main infection location.

The government measures are believed to include: 

  • Keep restrictions in pubs that force them to operate table service only, with no queuing at the bar
  • Social distancing rules, including the wearing of masks indoors and on public transport, remain 
  • Working from home guidance remains in place
  • Theatres limited to 50 per cent capacity
  • Nightclubs remain closed
  • Some increased capacity for sports events outdoors 
  • Weddings no longer limited to 30 attendees. They will be allowed to go ahead with as many guests as can be held by the venue under social distancing rules 

The government has also said

  • 23-24 year olds will be able to book their vaccination appointment as soon as tomorrow,
  • By July 19, all adults will have had a first dose.
  • “We will certainly look at what we can do to accelerate second doses for university students”.

Residents newsletter reveals history of brick making on Foxwood Lane

The Foxwood Residents Associartion is delivering a “Fox” newsletter to every househod in the area.

It includes an interesting article on he history of brick making on land now called Chesney’s Field. The article reveals that several buildings in Acomb used bricks from the works. Many are still standing.

Brick making started in 1880 and continued well into the 20th century.

The area was leveled 30 years ago and is currently well used by sports teams and for children’s play.

(1) Foxwood Residents Association – Posts | Facebook
https://www.facebook.com/FoxwoodResidentsAssociation/posts/4802031839823394

We understand that chidren from Hob Moor school are planning to “adopt” part of Chesney’s Field and help to keep it clean

We hope that the Council will improve its grass cutting performance.. It is not just parts of Chesney’s field which are becoming overgrown. The sports pitches, in particular, need regular mowing if they are to be used by young people during the summer holidays.

Coronavirus York updates; 13th June 2021

Test results

Eighteen positive test results. Brings cumulative total up to 12,608

The number of cases in the City has increased from 82 to 97.

The rate /100k population rises to 46.06. Trending to peak (?) at 61.7 on Wednesday.

Neighbourhoods

For the first time since 18th March, we have a neighbourhood (Clifton North) with a case rate /100k population of over 100.

17 of York’s 24 neighbourhoods each now have 3 or more cases

Map shows distribution of cases across UK and within York

Vaccinations

Another 1433 vaccinations were completed yesterday in York

Tests

  • 5227 PCR tests were completed during the week ending 8th June 2021
  • Of these, 1.6% were found to be positive. That is more than the 1.4% found during the previous period
  • 1089 “lateral flow” tests were also conducted on 12th June.

What’s on in York: Virtualising the Archive

Tuesday, 15th June 2021

19:30 – 20:30

On Line (click to register)

Virtualising the Archive
Dusty, dry, secretive, academic, mysterious, impenetrable – mainstream media often portrays archives (and archivists!) in these terms. This is despite the continuing efforts of the profession to ensure collections are open and accessible to all.

Explore York Libraries and Archives have partnered with Bright White Ltd, an innovator in digital storytelling, to slay the ˜dusty archives” dragon once and for all. Together, they are developing the prototype for the Explore Archives Storytelling Tool (EAST), which will allow the archives to be explored in new interactive ways.

Bright White’s creative developers Chris Walker and Andy Nye, along with Explore’s Civic Archivist Julie-Ann Vickers, will talk about the idea behind the new tool and their journey in developing the prototype.

As part of the event, you’ll also have the opportunity to participate in a demonstration of this next-generation archives experience for the first time in its development.

About the speakers:

Chris Walker is a Founding Director of the multi-award-winning design consultancy Bright White Ltd. Working predominantly in the museums and heritage sector, the company creates and implements innovative uses of technology in museum interpretation.

Andy Nye has spent 20 years in digital and has a proven track-record of concept creation, design and implementation. Since 2013 immersive technology has been a key part of his work. He has appeared on panels at shows such as the Wearable Technology Show and H+K’s influencer event, spoken at TEDx York and regularly hosts workshops on new technology.

Dr Julie-Ann Vickers is an archivist at Explore York Libraries and Archives. She has worked in local authority archives throughout Yorkshire as well as archives in Oxford, Suffolk and Leicester. She has a background in medieval history but her recent work has focussed on the 19th and 20th century records of York