Coronavirus York updates; 3rd April 2021

Deaths

No further hospital deaths announced today

Test Results

Six positive test results today. Brings the cumulative total up to 12,211.

The number of cases in the City has fallen by 12 from 61 yesterday to 49 today.

The case rate /100k population figure has fallen to 23.27.

That is the lowest rate seen since 9th September 2020

Infection rates continue to fall across the region

Neighbourhoods

Only one neighbourhood (Holgate West) now has an infection rate above 50. It is also the only area with a rate above the national average.

Most neighbourhoods now have fewer than 3 cases

Vaccinations

Tests

4231 PCR tests were carried out during the week ending 29th March 2021

Of these, 1.3% were positive. That is the lowest percentage seen for over two weeks.

1128 “lateral flow” tests were also carried out on 2nd April 2021

City quiet today

Not many people ventured into the City today on what is usually one of the busiest Saturdays in the year.

Most shops were closed of course, and the weather was cool

Those that did venture out, made their way to the areas near the Minster and the Museum Gardens. The latter was quite busy with some taking the Council’s advice to have a picnic.

LNER seems to have got the message that it needs to promote the empty spaces in its car parks.

The Council on the other hand still stubbornly cordons off a section of the busier Marygate car park in a futile attempt to promote “social distancing”,

New testing centre in Foxwood opens on 12th April

City of York Council is making it even easier for residents and workers in the city to get tested.

Workers in York and residents can benefit from a new testing site set to open soon, along with more opportunities for residents to collect home testing kits.

Foxwood Community centre is the latest symptom-free testing site in the city opening on Monday 12 April. It joins the existing sites at University of York, York St John University and the York Leisure Centre at the York Stadium Leisure Complex. Symptom free tests are available for anyone secondary school or college age and above. Symptom-free tests can be booked at any of York sites online or by calling 01904 551559. 

Each of these testing sites will now act as a collection point for home testing kits by appointment only. A slot can be booked online or by calling 01904 551559 and spaces are available from 7 April. Home tests should not be taken if you are experiencing symptoms and school and college pupils should continue to collect from their education settings.

Residents of any age who have Coronavirus symptoms can book a test online or by calling 119 and self-isolate until receiving results. The symptoms of Coronavirus are a continuous cough, a high temperature or a loss of or change in the sense of taste or smell.

Councillor Carol Runciman, Executive Member for Health and Social Care said:

We all have a part to play in stopping the spread of Coronavirus and helping us along the road back to normal. Getting tested regularly really does make a difference and protects those around you.

“The testing service is a huge city-wide effort and we are always looking at ways to make it easier for people to get tested. By opening more sites and introducing a collection service we hope this further aids our collective efforts to keep our city and each other safe.

“We are grateful to partners for their support as well as to residents who are getting tested regularly.”

Fiona Phillips, Assistant Director of Public Health said:

1 in 3 cases of Coronavirus have no symptoms. Having regular symptom-free tests helps us to identify those who could be spreading the virus unknowingly and protects people.

“We are hugely grateful to those taking regular tests and ask that more do as we continue to move along the roadmap.

“Even if you have had the vaccine we are asking you to get tested to stop you from giving the virus to others. These symptom-free tests are available to anyone secondary school age and above but anyone with symptoms of any age should self-isolate and book a test online or calling 119.

“We all have a part to play in the coming weeks and months. Getting tested regularly and practice hands, face, space will help us beat the virus.”


Why are symptom-free tests important and who should get one?

1 in 3 cases of Coronavirus has no symptoms so you could be spreading COVID to those you love without knowing it.

Getting tested, and self-isolating if necessary, stops the spread of the virus and will help us get back to seeing the people we love and going to the places we love.

We all still need to follow the rules and practice hands, face, space. Testing is another tool in our fight against the virus.

Symptom-free testing is now available to all adults and pupils from secondary school and college age and above.

I’ve had the vaccine, why should I get tested?

Whilst the vaccine reduces the risk of you having serious complications if you catch it, you could still spread Coronavirus to those around you, putting others at risk.

Not everyone has been vaccinated so getting tested regularly will help keep others safe and stop you from spreading the virus to those you love.

My test has come back negative, what can I do after this?

If you receive a negative test result you can continue as you were.

Remember:

  • a negative test result provides information about the level of the virus at one point in time
  • there’s the potential for the test result to be ‘false negative’ if you’re infected with COVID-19 but don’t yet have a high enough level of the virus to register on the Lateral Flow Device (LFD)
  • it’s possible to become infected in the hours or days after taking a rapid test – so you must continue to follow government guidance on social distancing, good hand hygiene, and practice ‘Hands, Face, Space’
  • this type of testing will only be effective if people continue to follow the guidance
My symptom-free test has come back positive, what should I do next?

If you receive a positive test result you must self-isolate for 10 days. In order to detect the maximum number of cases with variants, the government is reintroducing confirmatory PCR testing for positive LFD test results in England. Confirmatory tests are used to validate the result of the initial rapid test.
If you get a positive result on your first test you should not go for a second rapid results test – cancel your second test appointment by following the cancellation link in your booking confirmation email.

I have symptoms. Why can’t I use a home testing kit to check?

These tests are provided for those who are symptom-free to get regular tests. There are two testing sites in the city for people with symptoms of Coronavirus, please use them if you need it.

If you have symptoms, the probability of you having Covid is increased.  Given that a home test requires a confirmatory PCR anyway, this way will save you time and use the testing offer for those with symptoms.

My home test came back negative, why do I need to fill in the form?

Completing the form helps us to understand how many people are getting tested in the city and better understand the positivity rate (how much spread there is within a community).

Completing the form no matter the result provides us with valuable information about where we are as a city

What’s on in York; Cycle security marking on Friday

Organisers were reminding cyclists that there is an opportunity on Friday to have their bikes security marked by the Police.

The event, which will be held in the Foxwood Community Centre car park on Bellhouse Way, starts at 9:30am.

There will also be an opportunity to buy some perennial plants which have been grown in the community garden and to select some surplus food from the regular give away which is organised by volunteers.

Foxwood Community Centre to remain closed

According the the residents association Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/FoxwoodResidentsAssociation, the local community centre will not reopen in September as hoped.

Foxwood Community Centre

The centres Trustees say that they don’t have the resources or expertise to run the centre under post COVID restrictions.

That would be a shame. Some of the user groups provide essential support services for the local community. Some of these services are even more important in the post pandemic fragile world that we now live in.

Some users groups may cease to exist if they don’t have at least some earned income.

The Council has postured over the last few mnths about the importance of “community hubs”.

It should now put its money where its spin has been and agree to properly resource centres like the one in Foxwood.

What’s on in York: Bicycle security marking event

The many residents who have bought a bicycle during the last few months of lock-down, have their first opportunity to have it security marked on Friday 4th September.

The North Yorkshire police will be visiting the Foxwood Community centre car park between 9:30am and 11:30am at teh invitation of the Foxwood Residnts Association.

There will also be a plant sale while volunteers will be continuing their regular Friday morning distribution of surplus food.

Anger as Clarke Telecoms refuse to reconsider 5G mast blight

Planning application for 19 metre high Bellhouse Way 5G mast submitted

Despite a hostile response from local residents and Councillors to the informal soundings taken about their huge telecoms mast plan for a site near the Community Centre, Clarke Telecom have now submitted a formal planning application. Click here

Height comparisons and site plan

 Ironically, it comes on the day that the government announced that the mast user, the Chinese company Huawei, would be barred from involvement with the 5G roll out in the UK. Sources say this will put back the 5G timetable by between 2 and 3 years.

A 19 metre high mast in the middle of a residential area (twice the size of the existing mast) would tower over nearby trees, buildings and even lampposts. The ugly equipment antenna  would not be shrouded.

The new equipment cabinets would further obstruct the footpath outside the community centre and would exacerbate problems with anti-social behaviour and trespass.

By far the best option would be for any mast to be located on the Thanet Road Sports area. A site off Foxwood Lane could be found which would have less impact on either peoples homes or leisure buildings.  Existing masts on Thanet Road and Bellhouse Way could then be rationalised to one location which would avoid existing problems with sight lines being blocked for vehicle drivers.

Should this not be possible, then an alternative location, on the opposite side of the road from the Community Centre, would be preferable. This site takes the form of an inset which is currently occupied by cycle hoops (which could be moved into the park).

Suggested alternative location if the mast has to be on Bellhouse Way

Clarke Telecom representatives have offered a series of largely bogus reasons why this site could not be used. An area equivalent to the requirement for the cabinets and pole base has been marked out by the Residents Association. This demonstrates that the proposal could be accommodated with minimal intrusion into the park. If necessary, the railings could be realigned. Any affected trees could be replaced elsewhere in the park.

It is even more important these days that public footpaths be kept clear of clutter as we need to allow plenty of space for “social distancing”. This would mean removing the grass verge if the Community Centre site were approved.

Problems have occurred over the years with youths and criminals climbing onto the cabinets to gain entry to the adjacent car park, centre, and private houses beyond.

Any new mast which may be deemed as essential should be placed next the park where the natural vegetation would help to screen the unsightly utility boxes.

The current proposal represents a visually unacceptable blight on a residential area and should be rejected by the York Council.

Residents wishing to object to the proposal can do so either “on line” through the planning web site https://planningaccess.york.gov.uk/online-applications/ or by Email to planning.comments@york.gov.uk quoting reference 20/01183/TCMAS