Coronavirus update 1 April 2021

Dine Romero, Leader of Bath & North East Somerset Council

A message from Councillor Dine Romero

It is with great sadness that I announce that I am standing down as council leader, so this will be my last message to you in e-connect. Councillor Kevin Guy is now the Liberal Democrat group leader with immediate effect and will be the group’s nomination for leader at the council’s Annual Meeting in May. Deputy council leader Councillor Richard Samuel will carry out the council leader's duties in the interim.

I wish to thank everyone who has worked with, and supported me, during the last two years in my time as leader of the council.

I am incredibly proud of what the council has achieved both before and during the pandemic. I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you to all council officers and council partners who have worked so hard, and in particular everyone who has supported our most vulnerable residents. I would also like to thank all those who have taken the time to read my e-connect messages and for the kind feedback you've given.

I personally want to recognise Dr Bruce Laurence, who retired today as our Director of Public Health. He has led the council's response to the pandemic with integrity and compassion. I also would like to welcome Becky Reynolds, who takes up the reins and who will oversee the next phase of the council’s work to keep communities safe.
These are the latest Covid case figures for B&NES – please play your part to drive the number down.

Covid-19 update

Workplace testing progamme expands to offer free rapid home testing

From 6 April, the workplace testing programme will supply home test kits to companies with over 10 workers where it is not possible to set up testing on-site, due to a lack of space or because companies operate across multiple sites.

Businesses across the country will be eligible to order the home test kits online to distribute to their employees. These self-test kits will be picked up by staff from their employer with clear instructions about how to take the test. Staff will then complete the home test in the normal way, before reporting their results to the NHS using the provided address.

Businesses can sign up for workplace testing now.

NHS Test and Trace Support Payment application

If a child or young person you care for has been advised to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace or their education or childcare provider, you could be eligible for a support payment of £500. The payments are available if you are unable to work due to childcare commitments and meet the eligibility criteria.
How to apply

Latest council news

Households with children: Pick up your Covid-19 home testing kit

Households with school age children are being urged to continue testing throughout the Easter holidays.

Restart grants to help hundreds of local businesses reopen safely

Hundreds of businesses are to receive financial support to help them reopen safely following lockdown.

Community Wellbeing Hub will continue supporting after shielding

If you’re clinically extremely vulnerable, you will still be able to receive support from the Community Wellbeing Hub once shielding ends.

BreakOut sessions available this Easter

BreakOut, the schools holiday programme, is back during the Easter holidays, operating in local schools. Offering sporting and creative play activities for young people aged 5-16 whose families are in receipt of Pupil Premium and or free school meals, the events will take place at several local Covid-19 safe community sites.

The book a BreakOut session:
  • For children aged 5-11 ‒ call Becks on 07880359428 (Open 9am-12noon Mon-Fri)
  • For teenagers aged 12-16 ‒ call Jonno on 07741882374
Alternatively, sign up online on Easter BreakOut Calendar of Events.

The deadline for all registrations is Friday 2 April.

Council meeting calendar

Do you want to know about decisions being taken by the council and have your say? Please follow this link to the council’s calendar of meetings.

Local democracy

Local elections

If you haven't done so yet, the deadline to register to vote is midnight on Monday 19 April.

Time running out to apply for EU Settlement Scheme

EU, EEA and Swiss citizens living in Bath & North East Somerset are being reminded about the deadline to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to continue living in the UK after June 30 2021.

If you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen, you and your family can apply to the EU Settlement Scheme. You can also apply if you’re the family member of an eligible person of Northern Ireland.

The EEA includes the EU countries and also Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.

If your application is successful, you’ll get either settled or pre-settled status. The EU Settlement Scheme is open. You can apply now if you meet the criteria.

The deadline for applying is 30 June 2021. You must usually have started living in the UK by 31 December 2020.

Still time to complete the census

Census day was Sunday March 21. However, for those who have not yet submitted their online or paper questionnaires or have maybe misplaced their invitation letter, there is lots of help available.

Every household should have received their letter inviting them to take part. If you haven't, or you've misplaced your letter, go to and request a new unique access code.

There is plenty of help available, including face-to-face assistance at local Census Support Centres within Bath at Moorland Road Community Library on 0792 777 7385 between 1pm-4pm Mon-Fri to arrange a face-to-face appointment and also at Southdown Methodist Church on 0750 668 1894 between 9am-4.30pm Mon-Fri for telephone support as well as a face-to-face appointment.

Latest Government guidance

Stay at home: guidance for households with possible or confirmed coronavirus infection

It is important that we all take steps to reduce the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) infection in the community to save lives and protect the NHS.

Guidance for contacts of people with confirmed coronavirus infection who do not live with the person

If you live in the same household as a person who has symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) or who has received a positive test result, follow the Stay at Home: guidance for households with possible or confirmed COVID-19.

COVID-19 home test: step-by-step guide (adults and children)

This is a swab test to check if you have coronavirus (COVID-19) now.

COVID-19 vaccination: guide for adults

This leaflet explains about the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination, who is eligible and who needs to have the vaccine to protect them from COVID-19.

COVID-19: advice for smokers and vapers

In the time of the coronavirus pandemic, taking action to protect and improve your health is particularly important.

Visit someone in prison during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic

Information and guidance about visiting prisons in England and Wales.

Follow us on online

You can follow us on twitterfacebook and instagram; subscribe to us on YouTube, read the latest releases on our newsroom and if you sign up on we are there too.

For updates on our services visit our website.

Support available for Clinically Extremely Vulnerable people from the Community Wellbeing Hub

As part of the Government’s roadmap out of lockdown that was announced last month, those people who have been previously identified as Clinically Extremely Vulnerable, will be contacted advising that shielding ceases from the 1st April. More information can be found here.

Many people who have been shielding may be anxious about these changes. Support available from the Community Wellbeing Hub will continue beyond 1st April. The Community Wellbeing Hub is a collaboration between Bath & North East Somerset Council, Virgin Care and third sector organisation representatives 3SG. The team can offer a range of support services such as mental health, returning home from hospital, income, housing and benefits advice, food and medication collections, as well as lifestyle services for help with stopping smoking, getting active or losing weight.

To contact the Hub:

Phone: 0300 247 0050.
Text: 07870 868368
Opening hours: Monday–Friday, 9am until 5pm

If you need to contact the council about its services please ring Council Connect on 01225 394041 or email

Mental health and wellbeing

If you need mental health and wellbeing support go to  Every Mind Matters and there’s also information on these pages:

Bathnes 1BD provides information, activities and support for families and children, including mental health and emotional wellbeing. We also have a similar page for adults needing support or care, on Wellbeing Options.

You can call:
  • Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership Trust 0300 303 1320
  • Community Wellbeing Hub 0300 247 0050
Bath Mind Breathing Space 01225 983130

Domestic abuse

You may leave home, to avoid injury or illness or to escape risk of harm (such as domestic violence and abuse). Southside provide help to people who live in Bath & North East Somerset. Their working hours are 9-5pm Monday-Thursday, and 9-4pm Fridays. Local support services can be found here.

Sight loss support

Sight Support West of England provides emotional and practical support to help people adjust to living with sight loss. Since lockdown this has been either online or over the phone. Now following careful planning, some covid-secure face-to-face support sessions are resuming on an appointment only basis.

Your Community Sight Loss Adviser will be available at Manvers Street Baptist Church, Bath on the first Wednesday each month and at Midsomer Norton Town Hall on the 4th Thursday each month. 
To find out more, or make an appointment please call  0117 3224885 or email For more information on the full range of services visit

For more useful information visit the RNIB website:

Local agencies and useful links

We have been working closely with local agencies and if you would like to find out more about their work please look on their website: RUHAvon and Somerset PoliceCuro, and Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire CCG.
  • Public Health England updates a daily dashboard:  It includes deaths that have occurred in all settings where there has been a positive COVID-19 test, including hospitals, care homes and the wider community. 
  • Latest information on coronavirus:
NHS information on coronavirus:
Visit our Bathnes youtube channel

Tune in

Local radio is a great way of keeping up to date with essential information, if you don’t already you should tune into BBC Radio Bristol, BBC Radio Somerset or BBC Radio Wiltshire.
BBC Radio Bristol BBC Radio Bristol
BBC Radio Somerset BBC Radio Somerset
BBC Radio Wiltshire BBC Radio Wiltshire
Somer Valley FM covers Midsomer Norton, Radstock, Westfield and surrounding villages including Farrington, Paulton, Peasedown, Coleford and Stratton.

Broadcast online and on 97.5fm you can contact at or call 01761 411 755
Somer Valley 97.5FM Somer Valley 97.5FM
Bath Radio is a community radio station which has been operating as a hospital radio station for the past 50 years. It now broadcasts to the wider Bath community. Listen online.
Radio Bath provides local news and information, promotes the city and supports its businesses, charities and community organisations.
Keynsham’s KTCRfm 105.8FM is now broadcasting 24/7.

KTCRfm covers Keynsham, Saltford, Hanham, Bitton, Warmley, Clutton, Timsbury, the Chew Valley and as far south as Temple Cloud. East to the eastern edge of Bath. North across South Gloucestershire to the M4 corridor and west into many parts of Bristol.
KTCRfm 105.8FM KTCRfm 105.8FM

BA1 Radio have been established for a year in Bath and operate from a studio in Southside Youth Hub, broadcasting twelve hours of shows every weekday, focusing on Bath and the local community, including hourly news reports.


call: 01225 941 080
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