So the big day approaches in just one week. From next Saturday on 4th July new rules come into force including the reduction of the social distancing rule down to one meter. Following the announcements earlier this week I have been surprised that the new rules have not been published more widely, but the following are some of the key points with regard to gatherings, public spaces and activities:
From 4 July:
- you can meet in groups of up to two households (your support bubble counts as one household) in any location – public or private, indoors or outdoors. You do not always have to meet with the same household – you can meet with different households at different times. However, it remains the case – even inside someone’s home – that you should socially distance from anyone not in your household or bubble. This change also does not affect the support you receive from your carers
- when you are outside you can continue to meet in groups of up to six people from different households, following social distancing guidelines
- additional businesses and venues, including restaurants, pubs, cinemas, visitor attractions, hotels, and campsites will be able to open – but certain premises will remain closed where the risks of transmission may be higher
- other public places, such as libraries, community centres, places of worship, outdoor playgrounds and outdoor gyms will be able to open
- you will be able to travel any distance and stay overnight away from your home with your own household or support bubble, or with members of one other household
- it will be against the law to gather in groups larger than 30 people, except for a limited set of circumstances to be set out in law
- masks have to be worn on public transport and are to be encouraged in any public places like shops and public buildings in close proximity to others
- as touched on above, we will be able to open our playground from the 4th July but have yet to be told what rules we will need to follow. We will endeavour to sort this out during the coming week
- people who are clinically vulnerable, will be able to meet people indoors as well as outdoors. However they should continue to be especially careful and diligent about social distancing & hand hygiene and put safety first.
It is of course up to all of us to take responsibility for our own actions and remember to keep a sensible distance from each other and importantly continue to wash our hands regularly. If we are being honest, it is really difficult to stick to the guidelines and we should not be shy in reminding each other from time to time if we step over the line. The Government want us to make it a matter of public common sense for the common good – its policing by consent which makes sense to me.
For more detailed information on the new rules visit:
Stratton Audley Barn update
As you know Stratton Audley Barn is now open at weekends from Friday through to Sunday. They are serving takeaway coffee, cake and ice cream from 10am to 4pm. It is going well and they are offering villagers and OAPs a half price take-away coffee or Ice cream on a Friday morning between 10-11am.
The shop is now also open and operating in compliance with the government guidelines. On the 4th July, they plan to offer bench seating in the enclosed paddock area under parasols and a few Bell tents.
For more information go to www.strattonaudleybarn.co.uk
Nepalese Curry Night on Monday comes to an end
The Nepalese curry van was in the village again on Monday for another successful night. However please note that they will not be with us this coming Monday and will be taking a break as we move forward and out of lockdown.
Re-opening of the church. Volunteers wanted.
The church is now open and has already welcomed a number of visitors. Several villagers have volunteered to help for just 10 minutes at around 5pm, to complete a very short list of checks and use a light anti-microbial mist spray on some specific areas of likely contact. However, a few more volunteers would be welcome and if you would also like to help, then please email firstname.lastname@example.org . If anyone has any flowers that they would like to have displayed in the Church then please take them along (there are vases by the tea point).
From the 4th July, churches are allowed to open for services and weddings for up to 30 people, but at this early stage no plans have yet been published as to how this might work in Stratton Audley.
The church is taking feedback on the type of services and activities that people would like to see in the future, because during lockdown they have been using some new internet based services. If you would like to participate in a questionnaire about future services please contact email@example.com
The Red Lion
Put it in your diary now that the big opening is next Saturday 4th July. If you have not yet popped in to see the work in progress to get the pub ready, then prepare to be amazed.
Details for the opening will be included in the next email which will be put out on Friday 3rd.
Prescription Delivery Service
Just to update you, this week was the last week of medical deliveries from Montgomery House & Bicester Health Centre. The surgeries are very well organised now with social distancing in place and greeters at the door (please note patients must wear a face mask to be seen by medical personnel).
On average 60 prescriptions per week were delivered to our residents and it seems to have been very successful in helping the ‘stay at home’ initiative. If we have a second spike, I am sure our volunteers will be happy to help again.
Our thanks go to Clare Hedgecox and Andy Hunter in Stratton Audley plus also to Lucy Broome from Goddington.
Station Road which runs from the crossroad with Launton Road to the centre of Launton was closed during the past week by EWR for vegetation clearance by the hump back bridge. This has meant a small amount of extra traffic through the village. The Parish Council was not made aware of this in advance and has lodged a complaint.
Further discussions are taking place with EWR to establish exactly what type of vehicle movements will come through the village when the line is constructed, when work is likely to start, and for how long. Answers to these and more questions will be discussed at the next virtual PC meeting and then published.
Road Closure in Launton
Another bit of sleuthing by a resident in the village, passed on information that the Blackthorn Road in Launton is to be closed from this coming Monday and that some traffic may be rerouted through Marsh Gibbon and also Stratton Audley. Attempts to clarify this today with the County Council were unsuccessful but any noticeable increase in traffic will be down to this. It has nothing to do with EWR and we understand is connected to a housing development in Launton.
Home Cooked Meals Delivery Service
Local business Seven Mile Cookery continue to offer their home cooked meals for delivery in Stratton Audley and the surrounding areas every Thursday afternoon. “A delicious alternative to mass produced frozen meals – our hearty homemade food is cooked in small batches from fresh ingredients and frozen to retain all the flavour and nutrition you would find if you had cooked it from scratch yourself.”
Order online at www.sevenmile.co.uk/mealdelivery or call Jake on 07891 448749.
Matters that I have been made aware of during the last week:
- Several youths were seen smoking pot in the Pound
- A number of people have noticed speeding cars in the village
- There have been a few reports of noticeable dog poo around the village
The police were informed about the first two items and have added the Pound and the pond path to their patrol roster. This has also been forwarded to the Rural Neighbourhood team and they ask that any sightings be reported at the time via 101 or 999 if a crime is in progress. The information will also submitted for intelligence which they will use to build a picture of what is happening in and around the villages.
Any reports of vehicles speeding/driving dangerously through the village can be reported at the time via 101 or 999, but they are unable to do anything retrospectively as independent evidence would be needed such as dash cam footage.
With regard to the dog poo issues, there is really no excuse for this to be happening since free disposable bags are always available at four locations in the village. If you observe disorderly behaviour of this type you are quite within your rights to report it to the dog warden on 01295 221621. Whilst most people act responsibly, it’s a messy business, so please, let’s all try and keep out streets clean!
If you have anything you feel that the community should be aware of and would make a difference, or have something else you want to raise with the Parish Council, we are always open to ideas and in listening mode.
All the best and continue to stay alert. In the words of Spock….Live long and prosper!