Cambridgeshire County Council and Peterborough City Council communications team will be providing a daily media update with a round-up of any changes to council services arising from the Coronavirus. Please note – all information is correct at the time of publishing.
UPDATE: Tuesday, 12 May 2020
Road projects across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough – Crews across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough have been continuing to carry out safety critical work and essential highways maintenance.
A review has taken place across both councils to see which road work schemes could re-start, following that assessment, given the current low volumes of traffic and working with our contractors, it has been agreed work on a large number of road projects will start again.
We have worked with our contractors and work will be carried out safely whilst adhering to the government guidelines and where materials are available. This will be continually monitored. Any work is being carried out in accordance with government health and safety measures, with workforces practising social distancing.
In Cambridgeshire and Peterborough we’re aiming to get the majority of schemes re-started by the end of this week. For example, in Peterborough the A605 Alwalton, A15/A47 Junction 18 and footway schemes and in Cambridgeshire, Fenton Road, Little Stukeley, Isleham and Eastrea Road resurfacing, drainage work and footway sealing as well as Fendon Road/Dutch Style roundabout will start again.
Vulnerable children given instant access to their future favourite books – A partnership between Peterborough City Council, The National Literacy Trust and accountancy firm KPMG, has seen a number of city schools benefit from a new ‘Virtual Library’, with each school receiving 30 books along with digital resources.
The ‘Reading the Future’ campaign, crafted by KPMG to celebrate its 150th anniversary, aims to transform communities through literacy, education and skills.
Research by The National Literacy Trust shows that almost 400,000 children in the UK don’t have a book of their own at home and 53 per cent of teachers say they don’t have a library in their school.
Therefore, the partnership was keen to address this issue head on by providing more children with access to a range of books they might grow to know and love.
With many children currently learning at home and not wanting anyone to miss out, a range of digital activities and resources have been made available, to ensure everyone can continue learning about what the Very Hungry Caterpillar ate next and just what goes into the Diary of a Wimpy Kid.
The Virtual Libraries will be delivered to nominated schools this week.
Jonathan Lewis, director of education for Peterborough City Council, said: “I want to say a huge thank you to colleagues at KPMG and the National Literacy Trust for this campaign and the commitment they have shown to improving literacy for all our children, whether in school or at home.
“We are all aware how important reading is for a child’s development and wider educational attainment and by providing these instant libraries to a number of our schools, we can ensure our children have greater access to books and resources which they can enjoy. You never know, they may find their future favourite book.”
Peterborough Association for the Blind highlights impact of Covid-19 – Residents with visual impairment have spoken about the difficulties in dealing with a loss of independence due to the Covid-19 lockdown.
People with serious sight loss cannot easily socially distance and need sighted guides to be available so they can remain two metres away from others while out and about.
They must also now rely on others to complete essential activities such as food shopping and collecting prescriptions – something that many have worked hard to be able to do by themselves.
Many visually impaired people cannot carry out the activities they once relied on to keep themselves busy and occupied during stressful times.
A member of Peterborough Association for the Blind (PAB) who had taken up rowing to improve their mental health, had been training to row blind and solo next month. They have described just how Covid-19 has infringed upon their life:
“The consequences of lockdown mean that the independence and freedom that people with sight loss fight so hard to achieve has been taken away. I feel more restricted as I can’t just decide to go out for daily exercise as my sighted guide has to be available and willing. I often long for the calm feelings I have when rowing and I can forget about being blind.”
Councillor Irene Walsh, Peterborough City Council’s cabinet member for communities, said:
“We are aware of the issues vulnerable people are facing during these difficult times, particularly those who have lost their sense of independence and we are fully committed to helping them.
“The ongoing work of community groups like the PAB is proving invaluable. We are working with them to ensure that those with visual impairment are not left socially isolated and know who they can turn to for vital support.”
For information and support for those with visual impairment during this period for blind and visually impaired residents, visit the Peterborough Association for the Blind website
Dr Liz Robin vlog – Dr Liz Robin’s, Director of Public Health for Cambridgeshire County Council and Peterborough City Council, informs us that in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough we’ve been successful in keeping our rates of coronavirus infection lower than average – which is down to all of us in our communities following the instructions to stay at home – and that at the heart of the new ‘Stay Alert’ message remains the key principle of staying at home and adhering to social distancing rules to stop the spread of the virus.
Today’s video blog is now available on our YouTube channels. Dr Liz Robin can do interviews about the current COVID-19 situation or the contents of today’s Vlog. Please contact the newsdesk to check availability.
Free online courses to support local people during this pandemic – Cambridgeshire Skills, an adult and community learning service, is offering free online opportunities to help people get back on their feet. For a limited period, they are offering their online courses, such as ‘employability boot camp, improve your English, maths, computer skills, garden design, food safety, Italian and more free to everyone.
Tanya Meadows, Head of Service at Cambridgeshire Skills – part of the adult education service at Cambridgeshire County Council, said: “We are changing our delivery style to meet the needs of the local communities during the current pandemic. We’re launching new exciting online opportunities, which our tutors have been working hard to provide the resources they need online and will be there to support and guide the learner every step of the way. We will have a wide variety of courses available and for those who are less confident with digital skills we have created simple guides to help you get online.”
Cllr Steve Criswell, Chair of the Communities and Partnership Committee at Cambridgeshire County Council, said: “I am delighted to see such innovation in our adult skills delivery to create online provision which will help to assist the county recover from the Covid-19 pandemic. These free courses will help people get back into work and support economic and social wellbeing.”
If you would like to improve your knowledge, help build your confidence for a new job or interested in learning a new skill. Check out how Cambridgeshire Skills can help you, visit their website for more information or email
You can keep up-to-date with any changes to our services on our websites:
- Peterborough – https://www.peterborough.gov.uk/healthcare/public-health/coronavirus/disruption-to-council-services
- Cambridgeshire – https://www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/residents/coronavirus/disruption-to-council-services
Coronavirus: what you need to do
- Stay at home
- Only go outside for food, health reasons or work (where this absolutely cannot be done from home)
- Stay 2 metres (6ft) away from other people
- Wash your hands as soon as you get home
Anyone can spread the virus!
Full guidance on staying at home and away from others can be found here.