Time to ‘Face Up’.
As of this coming Friday 24th July, face masks will be compulsory in shops and supermarkets, joining public transport where wearing them has been compulsory since June 15th. The new rules will be enforced by the police, not shop workers who should instead “encourage compliance”, officials said. Children under 11 years old and those with “certain disabilities” will be exempt.
A Government spokesman says: “There is growing evidence that wearing a face covering in an enclosed space helps protect individuals and those around them from coronavirus. But they are not a replacement for washing your hands regularly and maintaining social distances”.
More detail including the exemptions is included at the end of this email.
Around the Village
- Recently there has been a further incident down at the pond, on this occasion with a couple of young guys camping overnight on the footpath and fishing, which caused concern for some residents and inconvenience for others. As a result, signage is being put in place pointing out that it is private land and people should stick to the public footpath
- With regard to fishing which is not generally permitted, Mrs Gosling remains happy for residents to apply for written permission. Her telephone number is 277 251
- A number of people commented that the path between the Old Rectory and the back of The Hall was overgrown with vegetation, so the Parish Council arranged for it to be cut back and this has now been done
- It has been decided to install an additional dog waste bin on the Bicester Road near the entrance to the village as this is the only road that does not have one. For your interest the Parish Council pays Cherwell District Council to empty each bin once a week
- The white wooden village entry gates and signs have been cleaned. Thanks go to John Woodward for undertaking the work on Mill Road, to Mike Hedgecox for Launton Road, to Mike Gore for Bicester Road and to Anthony Flack for Stoke Lyne Road
- An idea has been put forward by resident John Edwards to purchase and install boot scrapers in the village and pay for them out of the Village Improvement Fund. This idea was liked and approved by the committee so two will be purchased, one to be positioned on the pond path and the other in the Pound pocket park
- The roads in the village have been recently sprayed to kill off unsightly weeds. Again, for your interest, The Parish Council pays a contractor to carry out this work three times a year.
Glass Bottle Bank Site
A resident recently contacted Cherwell District Council asking if a bottle bank could be installed in the village for the convenience of villagers. Cherwell Council is willing to provide this service free of charge because they do not offer a kerbside glass recycling service like some councils do. This is something that has previously been considered a few years ago and rejected by the Parish Council despite it being in principle a good idea. The District Council propose installing the unit next to the bins at the bottom of Cherry Street. There would be three standard size wheelie bins held securely in a locked metal frame and they would be emptied regularly. Initially they would be monitored on a weekly basis to establish their usage and there could be a trial period of three months.
The Parish Council recognises that the subject can be fairly polarising and will not be making an immediate decision on the matter. A number of factors including noise and the risk of boxes and carrier bags being dumped next to the bins need to be taken into consideration. That said, it would be convenient for some people who are less mobile.
The matter will be addressed at the next PC meeting but if in the mean time you have a view on the matter then by all means get in touch with the Parish Council via email or one of the Parish Councillors.
The Red Lion
For those of you who haven’t yet visited the refurbished pub, the enlarged beer garden is a great space to relax and enjoy a drink.
The new opening hours are:
Tuesday – Friday: 3-11pm
The kitchen is closed but finger food will be available from the shack in the garden that can be eaten in or taken away! On Fridays at the moment there is a special “Fizz and chips” on the menu from 5pm -8pm (fish and chips with a glass of Prosecco for £10). The shack will be open at varying times so keep an eye out on our Facebook page or on the notice board outside the pub for all information!
Stratton Audley Barn
Stratton Audley Barn is now open from THURSDAY to Sunday and are serving coffee, cake and ice cream from 10am to 4pm either to takeaway or eat on the premises. And now they have added savoury Panini’s available from 10-2.30pm. Villagers and OAPs can still get half price take-away coffee or ice cream on a Friday morning between 10-11am. There is an enclosed seating area in the paddock with tables, parasols and a few Bell tents to enjoy your refreshments in comfort.
East West Rail Road Closure in Launton
Just a reminder of the closure of the Bicester Road in Launton – the stretch of road that goes towards the bridge at Charbridge Lane. I am told this has happened as of today and will last for three days. Traffic is not officially being directed through the village though there has been some seesawing on this matter between Oxon and Bucks county councils.
Nepalese Curry Night OFF THE MENU for now
Please note that the Nepalese curry wagon will not be outside the pub on Mondays for the time being. George says he hopes to return in the near future.
Wearing Face Masks in Shops and Supermarkets – The Detail
Those who do not adhere to the rules face a fine of up to £100. It will be reduced to £50 if paid within 14 days. Compulsory mask wearing will be enforced by police, according to the Government, rather than shop owners and staff themselves, who can call the police or refuse the person entry.
Who is exempt from wearing a face mask?
According to the official Government guidance, the below groups are not required to wear a mask:
- A child under the age of 11
- An employee of the transport operator, when they are acting in the course of their employment
- A constable or police community support officer acting in the course of their duty
- An emergency response member of staff, such as a paramedic or fire officer acting in the course of their duty
- Other legitimate exemptions listed include those with a disability or a physical or mental illness, and anyone travelling with a deaf person who relies on lip reading to communicate.
- Wearers are also permitted to remove them if it is necessary to avoid harm or injury, as well as to eat or drink if required, to take medication, or if a police officer or other official requests you to do so.
- Customers in shops will also be allowed to remove them if they are required to present identification for purchasing alcohol and other age-restricted products.
Are there any exceptions to the rule?
Yes there are some exceptions, which the government have outlined as ‘reasonable’ reasons for not wearing a mask. These include if you’re travelling with someone who requires lip reading, if you suffer from severe distress when you put it on, suffer from a disability where you’re unable to put it on, or you need to eat, drink or take medication.
Those who suffer from autism also don’t have to wear a mask, with the same applying to those who have an impairment which could be affected by putting on a covering.
Are masks required on trains and buses?
The current guidance has required masks to be worn on public transport in England since June 15. Travel operators can refuse to let passengers on board if they are not covering their face, and those who refuse to follow the new protocol could face a fine. Exceptions apply for very young children, disabled people, and those who have breathing difficulties.
Using a face mask
“Wash your hands or use hand sanitiser before putting it on and after taking it off and after use. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth at all times and store used face coverings in a plastic bag until you have an opportunity to wash them.”
“You should wash a face covering regularly. It can go in with other laundry, using your normal detergent.”
Although necessary to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, face coverings can be pretty uncomfortable. So what can you do to make them easier to wear? The link here might be helpful:
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 and stay safe.