According to the government’s web site the cumulative number of positive test results in the City remains at 12,176 today.
However, the profile of when the positive results were recorded has changed. They are recording a zero increase in cases today. The rejigging of the figures has resulted in 15 positive results being recorded on 25th March. If correct, this would be the highest single day figure recorded in the City since 9th March.
The number of cases in the City has increased from 65 to 68 (7 day moving average) That is the second day in a row that there has been an increase
The rate /100k population has increased to 32.29.
The revisions to the incidence of positive test results has also impacted elsewhere. There has been a big reduction in case numbers in North Yorkshire.
Case numbers at reginal level continue to increase.
The national rate is stable
The increase in case number sin Holgate East has continued. There are now 11 cases there. That is up from 1 in less than a week.
Elsewhere infection numbers are fairly stable.
4599 PCR tests were carried out in York duirng the week ending 22nd March 2021
1.5% of the tests were positive. That represents and increase over the previous days figure of 1.3%
1668 “lateral flow” tests were also conducted on 26th March
Latest capacity figures from York Hospital Trust
Council plans for reopening the “High Street”
The Council has revealed more of its plans to fund the reopening of the City centre to visitors. An initial programme had been discussed earlier in the month (click)
At a behind closed doors meeting, officials have now allocated funds to the following projects
The allocation of £45k to the BID to deliver College Green and general outdoor seating across the city centre
The allocation of £60k to Make It York to deliver Parliament Street seating area and £4.5k for the associated toilets
The allocation of a single budget of up to £20k to allow Make It York and the BID to operate shared security and waste collections across all city centre wide projects
The plans singularly fail to address the issues faced by suburban shopping areas. Not for the first time, the Front Street area has been snubbed.
What’s on at Easter
Guide to some leisure options available this Easter holiday click
Grant support provided to more than 3,500 businesses
During the last quarter more than 3,500 companies received grant support from City of York Council.
As the nation marks one year of unprecedented changes for residents as well as businesses, Executive Member for Economy and Strategic Planning has received an update on the economic support provided during the last quarter.
The focus for the council’s economic team has been quick and efficient payments of any business support grants for affected businesses, helping to protect jobs and secure the future for the diverse collection of independent businesses in the city.
City of York Council continue to provide grant support to more than 3,500 companies, accounting for more than half of the city’s businesses, which is a significantly higher proportion in comparison to other local councils. The Council’s focus has been getting support grants to those who are entitled to receive them quickly and efficiently, as well as focussing discretionary grants on the small and micro businesses that need them most. Funding provided through the 2020 microgrant scheme and the Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG) has helped over 1,200 businesses to adapt to challenges, and supported the diverse community of microbusiness in York. These businesses have been at the heart of the response in York, with payments received earlier than in other areas.
The report considered by the Executive member shows how York continues to be the city with the lowest percentage increase in unemployment, with cities including Bradford, Hull and Birmingham having seen unemployment rise at nearly 3 times the rate that York has experienced.*
To further support job retention and creation in the city, the Council has endorsed proposals put forward by the city’s Skills and Employment Board to tackle the immediate impact of the pandemic.
One-year plan: Skills for Employment in York, sets out how the city needs to respond to the changing skills and training needs of the city post-pandemic. The aim is to ensure that residents and businesses have the necessary skills and training support to meet their needs, helping York’s economy to recover, and grow, over the coming years.
Did you know that York Bridge Club are moving from Holgate to Acomb? They are currently building new purpose-built premises in the grounds of Acomb Sports Club. The new clubhouse is due to open in late 2021.
When the new building opens the Club aims to attract a new generation of bridge players who are interested in taking up the game. If you are interested the bridge club would like to get you started straight away with your learning.
To encourage new players to get involved York Bridge Club has launched an initiative to offer free online bridge beginner classes. This is a great way to get rid of the those “lockdown blues” by taking up a new hobby.
Online presentations will be delivered by qualified teachers. Ten weekly presentations each lasting around 45 minutes commence from 10am on Tuesday 23rd February. They will follow up each presentation the following day by facilitating themed practice of set hands.
All learners need is access to either a desktop, laptop or I-Pad. Instructions and invitations will be provided to registered students on how to access the learning. The Club will issue zoom invitations each week. If necessary, assistance with managing the IT requirement can be provided.
This opportunity is “not too good to be true”. It really is completely free of charge. The Bridge Club just hope learners find bridge compulsive and have an appetite for more when the free 10 weeks programme has ended. Eventually the Club hope you come and join them when their new clubhouse opens.
Although group walks are banned during lockdown, there are a lot of options which can be followed on an individual basis in west York. Some are more taxing than others.
“Move the Masses“ produces a map covering three routes in the Acomb area including one that crosses Bachelor Hill (see below).
The same group also advertise routes which include Acomb Green (click) and Fishponds Wood (click)
Elsewhere the Westfield Ward Councillors have claimed on their Facebook page that the tree trunk, which currently blocks the Foxwood Lane access to Acomb Moor, will be moved “as soon as the ground dries out”.
Maybe so. But if this happens then we hope that walkers will restrict their movements to the perimeter of the field until the crop has been harvested.
One consequence of more people walking in the area is that the footpath infrastructure is deteriorating more quickly. There is a need for stiles to be repaired and for hardcore to be putdown at locations which are flooding.
The Council has known about these pressures for some time and needs to reprioritise its leisure budgets to properly support healthy living routines.
The Council will consider an update reporttomorrow on how well its York Learning (further education) service is performing. Not surprisingly, courses have been interrupted with many of the venues used by the service not being available for hire.
The Council produced a “Shine” booklet recently outlining what was available this summer. Mainly aimed at families, it can be accessed by clicking here
Much of the York Learning’s £3 million budget is spent on providing educational opportunities for disadvantaged groups.
Some performance information has now been published click
It reveals that events such as “job fairs” have been shelved in the wake of the health scare. Given the likely increase in unemployment in the City, providing services like this must have a high priority even if they have to be established initially on a “virtual” basis.
Reskilling the workforce will be a challenge as the City – and country – tries to emerge from recession. Judging by the published report, York Learning has yet to adapt its priorities to address that challenge.
The report reveals a decline in student numbers – including refugees – undertaking English language courses. This is partly explained by the lower number of inward migrants to the area. Some courses are also now available on line using “zoom”.
The report to the meeting acknowledges that during recent months some residents have become more isolated than they needed to be because of lack of IT skills. Many services were only available “on line” during the crisis and libraries were closed.
Filling that skills gap is a top priority for the service
The learning team have been criticised in the past for being slightly remote from local communities. Residents Associations rarely receive any information about upcoming local activities.
The Council will need to engage more effectively in the future if those in greatest need of skills training are to receive the support that they need.
Latest York Council COVID-19 commentary (See open data)
DIAGNOSED CASES (Pillar 1 and 2 combined)
• As at 30.7.20 York has had 923 cases, a rate of 439.7 per 100,000 of population. The England rate is 465.4. The Yorkshire & Humber rate is 581.6. York has had 6 new cases in the last week: the most recent cases had a test specimen date of 25.7.20
• The PHE ‘Exceedance’ rating compares the no. of new cases over a 14 day period with the previous 6 weeks and provides a RAG rating to indicate if the previously observed trend in the no. of new cases is worsening. The latest rating for York (28.7.20) is Amber. The amber rating was triggered by a higher than ‘expected’ number of cases per 100 tests in a day (3 cases with a specimen date of 25.7.20). We know that in recent weeks the number of cases have been low in York which has an effect on the thresholds used to determine the RAG rating – a small change can mean the difference between a red, amber and green rating. The exceedance report should not be considered in isolation but in context alongside other factors such as the recent total number of cases, COVID related deaths, outbreaks as well as changes in the local testing regime and local hotspot analysis.
• The weekly rate of new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 population tested under Pillar 1 and 2 (as at 21.7.20, using the National Covid-19 Surveillance Report released on 23.7.20) was 0.95 for York. York was ranked 8th out of 150 local authorities (with 1 being the lowest rate). The updated report is not yet available at the time of publication.
• As at 28.7.20, the latest 7 day positivity rate (Pillar 2 only) was 0.46% (6 positives out of 1,294 tests). The positivity rate in York is lower than national (1.2%) and regional (2.0%) averages.
The two sources about deaths from Covid-19 at LA level are ONS data and local registrar data. They are derived from the same source (civil registration data). ONS data is more comprehensive as it will include deaths of York residents which have been registered outside York. Local registrar data is useful as it provides a breakdown by age and gender. The most recently available data is summarised below:
• ONS weekly data: For deaths occurring up to 17th July 2020 and registered up to 25th July 2020, 168 deaths were recorded as having occurred for CYC residents (82 in hospital, 73 in care homes, 9 at home, 3 in an hospice and 1 in an ‘other communal establishment’). The number of deaths per 100,000 of population in York is 79.77 which is lower than the national average of 86.68
• ‘Excess’ deaths (ONS). In week 29 (11 July to 17 July), 26 deaths occurred in York, which is 11 fewer than the average weekly number for 2014-18. The peak week for ‘excess’ deaths and for Covid deaths was week18 (25 April to 1 May).
• Local Registrar data: In the weekly data received on 27.7.20 (for deaths occurring up to 22.7.20), a cumulative total of 159 deaths of CYC residents where COVID-19 was mentioned (confirmed or suspected) on the death certificate, have been registered. The average age of the people who died was 82.4, with an age range of 53-104. The age profile of those dying in York is slightly older than the national average. 84 of the 159 were male (52.8%), slightly less than the national average (55%). 80 of the deaths occurred in hospital and 79 were community deaths (e.g. at home or in a care home or hospice). 68 people (42.8%) died in nursing /care homes (the national average is 29.6%). In addition 13 people (8.2%) who normally resided in nursing/care homes in the CYC area, died in hospital.
Data on deaths occurring in hospital are shown below. Deaths are initially reported for York NHS Foundation Trust which includes Scarborough Hospital and the further breakdown by site can be delayed. From local registrar data, 58.6% of COVID-19 deaths occurring at York Hospital have been CYC residents.
• Deaths at York Hospital: As at 30.7.20, 134 deaths of people who had tested positive for COVID-19 and were being cared for at York Hospital have been reported. 214 deaths have been reported by the wider York NHS Trust.
West Yorkshire restrictions
Looking at the 7 day positive test result trends its not surprising that the government has imposed additional social distancing restrictions in some west Yorkshire areas. Calderdale in particular has seen a recent spike in positive results.
The new lock-down rules, which came into force at midnight, mean people from different households will not be allowed to meet in homes or private gardens. They also ban members of two different households from mixing in pubs and restaurants, although individual households will still be able to visit such hospitality venues.
It is perhaps surprising that the restrictions did not include controls on travel. There were a huge number of vehicles heading for the coast today. This will make it virtually impossible to enforce social distancing rules.
The government has also announced that it will not, as planned, ease restrictions next week on some activities. Their statement reads
Further easing of restrictions which had been due to come in tomorrow in England are postponed until 15 August at the earliest – this includes the opening of casinos, bowling alleys, indoor theatres and concerts with social distancing
Changes to wedding celebrations to allow up to 30 guests are also postponed
Shielding will be paused nationally from 1 August as planned
Face covering rules will be extended to additional settings in England from 8 August, including museums. There will be a greater police presence to enforce this
The introduction of new restrictions in northern England is not a “return to lockdown” – but further local restrictions will be implemented as needed
No change to work-from-home guidance from tomorrow – meaning more people will still be encouraged to go in to their workplaces. The PM promised to “come down hard” on workplaces which people do not feel are safe
People who test positive for coronavirus will not be discharged into care homes
New slogan from the PM: “Hands, face, space, get a test”
Rise in infection rates in several parts of the world is not a “second wave”, says Professor Chris Whitty, but if people increase the number of people they meet, the virus rate will increase “inevitably”
Support for residents continues as shielding scheme is paused
As further changes to shielding advice come into force from 1 August, City of York Council is reminding residents that help is still available should people need it.
From 1 August the government will pause shielding. This means that:
the government will no longer be advising you to shield
the support from the National Shielding Service of free food parcels, medicine deliveries and care will stop
NHS Volunteer Responders will carry on delivering the food you buy, prescriptions and essential items to you if you need it you will still be eligible for priority supermarket slots (if you registered by 17 July)
However the Council is keen to reiterate that the coronavirus helpline remains open and the Council, working with communities and the city’s amazing volunteers, stands ready to continue to support people.
From 1 August, those shielding will be advised they can go out to more places and see more people, for example, the advice is:
you can go to work, as long as the workplace is COVID-secure – but carry on working from home if you can
children who are clinically extremely vulnerable can go back to school (when the rest of their class goes back)
Take-away drinks and dining al fresco: Licensing changes for York’s hospitality sector.
City of York Council is encouraging hospitality businesses across the city to make the most of recent national government licensing changes.
These changes are making it easier to use outdoor space for customers and serve take-away drinks.
The council is working with partners like Make it York and York BID to help businesses across the city to secure the space they need to open safely and allow residents to make the most of summer.
As well as extending footstreets and providing outdoor spaces like College Green, the council is reminding every business that they can support them to quickly take advantage of the new laws.
Our Let’s Be York campaign is also reminding businesses and customers to dispose of their litter responsibly and to work with the council, York BID, volunteer hosts and local businesses who are all going the extra mile to keep the city safe, clean and welcoming during these very different circumstances.
Pavement Café licenses
To put tables and chairs outside your premises you need a licence.
Businesses can apply for a licence, valid for between 3 months and 12 months (not beyond the end of 30 September 2021), under the Business and Planning Act 2020.
There are plenty of opportunities in York to make the most of this – from outside your property, to shared spaces or even space outside of vacant properties. Businesses can get in touch with City of York Council to find out what options are available to them.
Similarly, if retailers are interested in making better use of the footway outside their premises, they can find out more and seek permission by emailing email@example.com
Licensed premises take-away option
New government legislation now means that premises licensed to sell or supply alcohol for consumption on their premises (for example, pubs, bars, restaurants and cafes) can now also sell alcohol for consumption off the premises without restrictions. This means many of the restrictions on your license – such as selling in a sealed container – no longer apply.
Off sales can only be sold or supplied until 11pm. This provision will end on 30 September 2021. The council can also provide guidance on containers and toilet provision.
This provision does not apply to premises that are authorised to sell or supply alcohol by means of a ‘club premises certificate’, for example private members clubs.
These actions are designed to support the council’s Economic Recovery – Transport and Place Strategy, to build resident, visitor and stakeholder confidence that York is a safe, healthy and attractive place for everyone.
Cllr Andrew Waller, Executive Member for Economy and Strategic Planning, said;
“As our economy adapts to build back better, recent changes in licensing offer York’s hospitality businesses a great opportunity to expand their capacity to welcome more customers to enjoy the vibrant food and drink scene across the city.
“Colleagues across the council are working extremely hard to streamline these processes to help our city’s businesses reopen, recover and adapt. These changes make it easier for businesses to do just that, leaving them more time to do what they do best and offering customers more ways to enjoy the full range of local and independent shops which make York unique.
“We hope that visitors to the city centre will recognise the steps that businesses and attractions have taken, and to accept that there will be changes, but that these have been done with their safety in mind.”
Charlie Croft, Assistant Director of Communities and Culture at City of York Council, said: “We are incredibly proud of our Armed Forces and are committed to supporting our armed forces community. It is important to work with partners across the region to give thanks for the service they provide.
“If you are a business or community group in York with an offer or discount for Armed Forces Day, please get in contact to show your support.”
*All offers and discounts are redeemable on presentation of valid accreditation; Service ID, Defence Discount Card or Letter.
With 2017 drawing to a close it is that time of year when, after the excesses of Christmas celebrations, attention shifts to the New Year resolutions.
What’s on your New Year checklist? Whether it is no alcohol in ‘Dry January’; being more active; look after yourself better, especially your mental health by reducing the stress in your life; or stop smoking the council’s YorWellbeing service can offer advice and support to help you. Our YorWellbeing team also offer free health checks plus information, advice and support to help you have a happier and healthier 2018.
There are many things that affect how healthy and well a person is. The Yorwellbeing service will:
provide advice and support on lifestyle factors such as healthy eating, exercise, alcohol and smoking
encourage positive lifestyle and behaviour changes
work to reduce health inequalities across the city.
Councillor Carol Runciman, executive member for health and adult social care said: “The start of the New Year is a time for reflection. Our YorWellbeing service does a great job offering information, advice and support to help and can help you live a happier healthier lifestyle. Get in touch by phone or email or visit the website and our team will be happy to help.”