Important notice regarding use of Silverdale Playground

COVE ROAD PLAYGROUND IS NOW OPEN

The children’s playground on Cove Road is now open. However, families are strongly advised to read the notice from Lancaster City Council before entering. As Trustees of the playground, although the Parish Council cannot keep this area COVID-19 free, there are measures we advise you to take to minimise the risk to you and your family:

·       Only one child should use each piece of equipment at any one time

·       Clean your child’s hands before and after they touch any equipment

·       Please clean the equipment your child wants to use

·       Do not eat or drink in the playground area

·       Keep your distance and tell your children to keep away from other families (two metres or one metre if face masks are worn)

·       Use paper tissues to catch coughs or sneezes and dispose of them in the bins provided.

You will notice some equipment has been removed. This is a result of an overdue playground inspection by Lancaster City Council which has identified some equipment that needs to be replaced or repaired.

Silverdale Parish Council

19th July 2020

2020/07/16 – Parish Council News

PARISH COUNCIL NEWS – JULY 2020

Monday 6th,  at the meeting of the Parish Council a number of local issues were raised, including speeding within the village and parking. Several residents have written to the Council about speeding and it was noted that comments had been made on Facebook.  Some comments noted that it was not just visitors to the village who were speeding.   The Speed Indicator Devices will be fitted to their brackets soon. Purchase of a newer version that records data on speeding vehicles will also be on the Agenda for discussion at the August meeting.  Council are working with interested residents to overcome these issues, further details when available.  Parking provision in the village is another problem which requires a joint solution from various landowners and residents.

The playground on Cove Road will be reopened on Saturday 18th July, among other things this will allow some newly planted grass seed to grow and strengthen. Those supervising children will need to be aware of the Covid-19 risks involved for their children and take appropriate measures.  Notices will be displayed about this.  Which nicely leads on to noticeboards – the Healthy Village Communication Group has completed a review of the noticeboards throughout the village [not all owned by the PC] and Council will consider their recommendations and cost them with a view to implementation.

Ash Dieback is fast becoming a problem, and some of the Parish trees are suffering, particularly those on the Scroggs. A survey is required with a view as to how many can be saved, which will be happening in the near future.

A new Parish Councillor was co-opted, Liz Unsworth, whose experience in public relations and campaigning will be useful to the Council.   The PC are also asking for a review of the number Councillors on the Parish Council with a view to increasing from a maximum of 8 to a maximum of 9 councillors.

2020/6/22 latest information regarding scams

Criminals are exploiting the COVID-19 pandemic to try and get their hands on your money and personal information. To date, Action Fraud has received reports from 2,378 victims of Coronavirus-related scams, with the total losses reaching over £7 million.

How you can protect yourself from Coronavirus-related scams:

There are some simple steps you can take that will protect you from the most common Coronavirus-related scams. Here’s what need to do:

1 – Watch out for scam messages
Your bank, or other official organisations, won’t ask you to share personal information over email or text. If you receive an email you’re not quite sure about, forward it to the Suspicious Email Reporting Service (SERS):
report@phishing.gov.uk

2 – Shopping online
If you’re making a purchase from a company or person you don’t know and trust, carry out some research first, for example, by checking to see if others have used the site and what their experience was. If you decide to go ahead with the purchase, use a credit card if you have one, other payment providers may not provide the same protection.

3 – Unsolicited calls and browser pop-ups offering tech support
Never install any software, or grant remote access to your computer, as a result of a cold call. Remember, legitimate organisations would never contact you out of the blue to ask for financial details such as your PIN or full banking password.

NHS Test and Trace scams:

The NHS Test and Trace service plays an important role in the fight against coronavirus and it’s vital the public have confidence and trust in the service. However, we understand the concerns people have about the opportunity for criminals to commit scams.

What you need to know:

Contact tracers will only call you from the number 0300 013 5000. Anyone who does not wish to talk over the phone can request the NHS Test and Trace service to send an email or text instead, inviting them to log into the web-based service.

All text or emails sent by NHS Test and Trace will ask people to sign into the contact tracing website and will provide you with a unique reference number. We would advise people to type the web address https://contact-tracing.phe.gov.uk directly into their browser, followed by the unique reference number given to you, rather than clicking on any link provided in the message.

The NHS Test and Trace service will never:

  • ask you to dial a premium rate number to speak to them (for example, those starting 09 or 087)

  • ask you to make any form of payment or purchase a product or any kind

  • ask for any details about your bank account

  • ask for your social media identities or login details, or those of your contacts

  • ask you for any passwords or PINs, or ask you to set up any passwords or PINs over the phone  

  • ask you to download any software to your PC or ask you to hand over control of your PC, smartphone or tablet to anyone else

  • ask you to access any website that does not belong to the government or NHS

If you think you have been a victim of fraud, please report it to Action Fraud at https://www.actionfraud.police.uk or by calling 0300 123 2040.

2020/6/23 News from University Hospitals Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation trust

Please click on the link to see the latest bulletin about morecambe bay hospitals 22 June 2020 update

2020/06/02 News from University Hospitals Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation trust

A cross-bay service is continuing to support people in Lancaster, Barrow and Kendal, with eye conditions during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemicThe Eye Clinic Liaison Officer (ECLO) service is based in the Macular Clinic at Westmorland General Hospital and also offers a service at Furness General Hospital and Royal Lancaster Infirmary. The ECLO service is still helping to support people via telephone and email whilst abiding with social distancing guidelines that have been put in place by the Government.

The service offers patients with eye conditions the following:

  • information about conditions and emotional support

  • advice about different equipment including magnifiers, lighting and reading and writing aids

  • help to obtain transport to and from appointments, if possible, during the pandemic

  • advice about digital support (phones, laptops or iPad)

  • advice about education, employment, housing and leisure

  • support to register for talking books

  • referral to organisations such as Galloways Society for the Blind, Barrow Society for the Blind and the Macular Society for peer support and access to social activities.

  • support for inpatients including giving advice about communicating with a sight-impaired person.

Joan Lindsay, of Bolton-le-Sands, who has Macular Degeneration and has used the ECLO for the past 12 months, said: “The service is absolutely brilliant and very supportive. I have used the service during lockdown and they have helped me to access a new magnifier for reading and helped to support me to set up my iPad.”

Jackie Bateman, Eye Clinic Liaison Officer at Westmorland General Hospital, said: “We want to remind people that we are still running and are here to help them. If people do feel that they are struggling with their condition or need advice and support then please do contact us.”

The service usually runs Monday to Wednesday from 8.30am to 4.30pm but a message service is available at other times during the pandemic. People can contact the service at 01539769055 or email Jackie.Bateman@mbht.nhs.uk

You can find out more about the ECLO service at http://sightadvice.org.uk/what-we-do

2020/06/02 Carnforth recycling centre now open

Carnforth Household Waste Recycling Centre reopened on Thursday 4 June, along with the sites at Haslingden and Longridge

They operate in the same way as the 12 sites which reopened earlier this month with a booking system and restrictions in place to manage demand and ensure social distancing. The feedback on these new arrangements has been very positive from visitors to the first sites that were reopened.

You must make an appointment before visiting a recycling centre or you won’t be allowed access. Appointments can be made online at the link below or by calling 0300 123 6781 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm). Appointments are limited to one visit to one site per calendar week and you will not be able to book multiple visits to different sites. Your vehicle registration will be checked on arrival to ensure you have a valid appointment.

A link to the booking system is below:

https://www.lancashire.gov.uk/waste-and-recycling/recycling-centres/carnforth/ 

2020/06/01 New business grants available

Discretionary Grants Fund

The government has launched a new round of business grants and Lancaster City Council will be awarding grants of a minimum of £2,000 to eligible applicants.

In the first instance Lancaster City Council will only accept applications from the following businesses, which the government has asked all local authorities to prioritise:

·        Small businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces. Examples could include units in industrial parks, science parks and incubators which do not have their own business rates assessment

·        Regular market traders with fixed building costs, such as rent, who do not have their own business rates assessment

·        Bed & Breakfasts which pay Council Tax instead of business rates

·        Charity properties in receipt of charitable business rates relief which would otherwise have been eligible for Small Business Rates Relief or Rural Rate Relief

Eligibility

There are four key eligibility criteria which must all be met.

1. Small and micro businesses, where two of these three conditions are met: 

·        Turnover: Not more than £10.2 million  

·        Balance sheet total: Not more than £5.1 million  

·        Number of employees: a headcount of staff of less than 50 

2. Businesses with relatively high ongoing fixed property-related costs  
3. Businesses which can demonstrate that they have suffered a significant fall in income due to the COVID-19 crisis  
4. Businesses occupying all or part of a property, with a rateable value or annual rent or annual mortgage payments below £51,000. 

Businesses that have already received a government support grant are not eligible for this grant.

Businesses that have received assistance from the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme are eligible as long as they fulfil the four key eligibility criteria.

·        Further information on eligibility and how the grant will be administered and funds awarded is available on GOV.UK

How to apply

·        Apply for a discretionary business support grant

Please see the following guidance to support your application:

·        Guidance on completing a discretionary grant application form (PDF)

·        Lancaster City Council guidance on the eligibility criteria for awarding discretionary grants

·        Government guidance on the discretionary grant fund

Paper applications are available on request. Please email econdev@lancaster.gov.uk or telephone Customer Services on 01524 582000.  

Closing date

Applications for this round of grants must be received by 30 June 2020.

2020/05/02 Useful contacts from Lancashire County Councillor, Phillippa Williamson

Some useful contacts for you

Lancashire County Council

T: 0300 123 6701

Minicom: 01254 220 666

E: enquiries@lancashire.gov.uk

Website: https://www.lancashire.gov.uk/health-and-social-care/your-health-and-wellbeing/coronavirus/

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/lancashirecc

twitter – @LancashireCC.

Lancashire Resilience Forum – you can follow them @LancsResilience.

Public Health England is continuing to publish confirmed cases of coronavirus, and give specifics for each part of the country, including Lancashire, on their gov.uk website.

Lancaster City Council

T: 01524 582000

E: customerservices@lancaster.gov.uk (for residents)

E: econdev@lancaster.gov.uk (for businesses)

NHS Status Checker – The Coronavirus Status checker was launched on the 4 April 2020. The information gathered will help the NHS to plan its response to the outbreak. You can more at https://www.gov.uk/government/news/nhs-asks-people-to-share-their-coronavirus-symptoms-to-help-others?

Highways – If you want to report a Highways fault you can do this on line at: https://www.lancashire.gov.uk/roads-parking-and-travel/report-it/

Household Waste – If you spot any fly tipping, please report this to Lancaster City Council on 01524 582000 or online at https://www.lancaster.gov.uk/forms/ShowForm.asp?fm_fid=228

Supporting Business – Businesses can find out more about the #AskforHelp online at www.boostbusinesslancashire.co.uk/askforhelp, or call 0800 488 0057.

The Government has several financial support schemes to help businesses pay their bills and pay their staff. These include grants of £10,000 cash grant to small businesses, grants of £25,000 to those in the retail, leisure and hospitality sectors (subject to rateable value), increased Business Rates Relief, a Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, and support for the self-employed.

More information and links on how to apply for financial support is available on Lancaster City Council’s website or you can contact their business support team at

econdev@lancaster.gov.uk or 01524 582000.

Libraries – You can renew items on line at renewing online or using the automated phone line 0300 123 6704.

Help Paying Bills – If you’re struggling to pay your council tax the council can help, including restructuring your payments. You can do this by emailing ctax@lancaster.gov.uk. There is also a council tax support scheme for residents on low incomes. You may get up to 100% support in paying your bills. Residents in receipt of Universal Credit, are also likely to be eligible for full council tax support, More information is available from the customer services centre 01524 582000 or customerservices@lancaster.gov.uk.

Emergency Food – If you are aware of someone who needs help, you can find the contact details of people and organisations who can make a referral on www.lancasterdistrictcovid19.org.uk. If you don’t have access to the internet you can telephone the food hub on 01524 932001.

If you are just struggling to get out yourself to buy essential food, drink and household supplies, you can find a list of local retailers that are able to deliver at www.lmds.co.uk or phone 01524 932001.

Scams – Events such the coronavirus outbreak, bring out the scammers and fraudsters. Advice on scams is available on the Action Fraud website at www.actionfraud.police.uk or you can contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0808 2231133.

Volunteering – There are many organisations that would welcome you as volunteers, either individually or as part of an organised group. Lancaster District CVS are coordinating volunteers to support community organisations across the district. To volunteer, you can phone the CVS or visit www.lancaster.gov.uk/cvsvolunteers and fill in the form to register your interest.

If you are part of group providing mutual support at this time, and it hasn’t connected with either the CVS or the city council, please email civilcontingencies@lancaster.gov.uk so that they can support you in your work.

The County Council has published a new 7 minute briefing for use during the COVID-19 pandemic intended as an introduction to safeguarding guidance for volunteers at:

http://www.lancashiresafeguarding.org.uk/news/covid-19-and-safeguarding-for-volunteers.aspx

Job Opportunities The County Council has launched a campaign to recruit more social care staff for Lancashire to meet the extra demand that the coronavirus crisis is creating. This will run over the next couple of weeks. If you know anyone who may be interested, information is at: https://www.lancashire.gov.uk/jobs/carers/.

2020/04/27 Consumer Alert – April 2020

Price Increases for Goods

The Service is receiving a number of complaints about shops excessively increasing the prices of goods, particularly food stuffs and sanitisation products that are in high demand.  Whilst suppliers are free to set their own prices, Trading Standards work closely with the Competition and Markets Authority and will consider any evidence that companies may have broken competition or consumer protection law.

Reports have also been received regarding misleading claims being made about the efficacy of protective equipment and sanitisation products.  Please report such practices to Trading Standards via the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0808 2231133.

Bogus Coronavirus Testing Kits

Lancashire Police have received reports of door to door sales people offering “home Coronavirus testing kits”.  Please be aware, such items are fake, no such testing facility is currently available to the public in the UK.

The Police have also received reports of cold callers selling hand sanitiser, masks and rubber gloves and whilst this may not be a scam, this Service would urge you against purchasing these items from anyone other than recognised retailers.

There are reports of some potentially harmful hand sanitiser being sold containing glutaral (or glutaraldehyde), which was banned for human use in 2014.

Beware Property Repair Cold Callers

Trading Standards have received reports of householders being cold called by property repairers and are concerned that rogue traders may take advantage of the current situation, targeting older or vulnerable residents who are self-isolating or shielding.  

In South Ribble recently, an elderly gentleman, after being cold called, agreed to have his drive and patio jet washed, the price of initially £7000 was reduced to £3500, but when Trading Standards intervened, the traders alleged a misunderstanding, the price being £350.   In Fleetwood a householder agreed to groundworks and fencing but was concerned that the monies, over £12,000 were excessive.  Reports have also been received regarding cold callers  currently offering roofing services in the Burnley area.

In the Garstang area a lady in her 80’s received a flyer offering gardening services.  The traders arrived at her house within 10 minutes of her contacting them, giving her no time to think, and after just over an hours work charged her £750 for cutting back a conifer. The lady felt bullied into paying this excessive amount for poor quality work.

Trading Standards advice is to say no to cold callers, always get a written quote before agreeing to any work and remember for most contracts agreed at your home you should be given a 14 day cooling off period in writing.

Bogus Gas Man

A vulnerable lady in Thornton Cleveleys received a knock on her door from a man claiming to work for the gas board stating it had shown up on their computer that she had a leak.  Coincidentally she had recently had a legitimate gas repairman out to her property.  The bogus caller looked at the meter but then called his ‘boss’ on the telephone who told her she would have to pay to have a tree outside her house, trimmed down.  The lady argued that the tree was not her responsibility and got the individual to leave.  It is suspected the callers may be linked to a bogus roofing job she had previously had done.

Be suspicious of utility providers turning up unannounced at your door.  Always ask for  identification but check independently with the utility company.  In most cases you will have received a letter in advance letting you know work will take place.

Trading Standards advice is to always say no to cold callers.  The Safetrader scheme can help you find a trader in your area, contact 0303 333 1111 or go to www.safetrader.org.uk

Scammers Shopping for Elderly

A number of genuine community groups across the County are setting up, offering to help the elderly and vulnerable with tasks such as shopping.  Although we are unaware of problems in the county so far, there is the potential for scammers to take advantage of the situation, taking payment up front, and not returning.  Reports of such incidents have already been received in the Rochdale area where the scammers pretended to be from the council. 

It is understood in some cases criminals have claimed to represent charities to help them appear reputable

Be particularly wary of those going door to door, offering these services with no paperwork and contact details.  Anyone claiming to be from a charity should have ID.  Genuine schemes should be properly organised, with clear paperwork and should give you the option of responding or not.

Telesales Calls  – White Goods Insurance

Please be wary of telephone calls offering warranties for white goods.  Often the callers can be persistent, repeatedly calling the householder and once you have agreed to a warranty, you can be targeted by other similar calls.  In one case a man, suffering with dementia, had given his bank card details to several of these companies, paying around £90 each time.   In another case a customer had paid £1800.

Please be wary of contracting with companies via a telesales call.  Trading Standards advice is to shop around and use local, known service providers.  Remember, you will have cancellation rights of 14 days for most contracts agreed over the telephone.

To reduce telesales calls join the Telephone Preference Service on 03450 700707

Telephone Scams  – Bit Coin Scam

As more people self-isolate at home there is an increasing risk that telephone scams will also rise, including criminals claiming to be your bank, mortgage lender or utility company

In a recent telephone scam, a Lancashire resident who had paid out £18,000 for a Bit Coin investment over 3 years ago received a telephone call from a scam company claiming they had been ordered by the bank to refund her the investment money.  They needed her bank account details and would also need a payment from her of £2000 which luckily the resident didn’t pay.

COVID-19 Email Tax Scam

Beware emails alleging to be from HM Revenue and Customs offering a precautionary tax measure due to the coronavirus outbreak ‘in co-operation with National Insurance and National Health Services’.  The scam email asks you to click on a link for a refund of £128.34.   

HMRC will never contact you in this way, be suspicious of emails alleging to be from government services and never click on any link or give your personal or financial details.

Scam emails from WHO

Hackers are sending emails pretending to be from the World Health Organisation (WHO).  The email claims that the attached document details how recipients can prevent the spread of the disease.  Clicking on the attachment gives the hackers the opportunity to infect the computer with malicious software.  If you would like to read information given out by the WHO, go directly to their official website.

Donation Scam Emails

Beware receiving any email claiming to be from researchers asking for donations.  One such email claimed to be from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, downloading to a fake Microsoft login page requesting email and password.  Another scam claims to be collecting donations for a Covid-19 vaccine.

Bogus online suppliers

The National Fraud Intelligence Bureau has identified reports where victims have attempted to purchase protective face masks from fraudulent online sellers, payment is taken but the goods never arrive. 

Reports have also been received of social feeds offering for sale anti-virus kits and telesales calls selling health supplements that supposedly prevent COVID-19.

Always use known, reputable online suppliers.  Best advice for any transactions over £100 is to pay by credit card for extra protection.

Beware of Fake Online Resources

Such as false Coronavirus Maps – that deliver malware such as AZORult Trojan, an information stealing program which can infiltrate a variety of sensitive data. A prominent example that has deployed malware is ‘corona-virus-map[dot]com’.

Holiday Refund Scams

Beware of companies offering fake holiday refunds for individuals who have been forced to cancel their trips. People seeking refunds should also be wary of fake websites set up to claim holiday refunds.

Illegal Money Lenders

Illegal money lenders are expected to prey on people’s financial hardship, lending money before charging extortionate interest rates and fees through possible threats and violence.

Ask your local Citizens Advice Bureau for advice if you have debt problems.

For advice and to report scams, contact the Trading Standards Service via the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0808 223 1133

2020/04/27 Guidance regarding current and forthcoming Religious festivals

To Community, Faith and Voluntary Groups,

We would like to share with you some guidance around Religious festivals –

During Ramadan, Muslim residents are being asked not to visit mosques but to continue to stay at home and pray.

 In view of the current situation with the increasing numbers in Covid related deaths, restrictions remain in place for the foreseeable future. In fact, further restrictions could be imposed if the situation does not improve.

 Taking this into account, with the holy month of Ramadan upon us, Imams and community leaders need to prepare the community for Ramadan in isolation.

 In line with the Government guidance and the current agreed arrangements those individuals who are employed as Imams who fall in the low risk category from each Mosque are allowed to attend the Mosque for prayers and undertake the spiritual and pastoral service that they provide to our communities. Other employees e.g. caretaker, admin officer of Mosques who need access are permitted to enter by exception and on a case-by-case basis.

 The Lancashire Resilience Forum is working closely with representatives of all faith groups across Lancashire to communicate a range of issues around faith, religion and culture during this difficult time.

 Neil Shaw, Chair of Lancashire Resilience Forum’s Faith group said: “We are consulting with all faith groups. We understand that during Ramadan, many Muslims take advantage of this month by engaging in prayers and spending more time at their local mosque.  This Ramadan will be different and to help communities fulfil their faith obligations we would encourage that although national physical distancing measures are in place that communities stay socially connected through non-physical contact such as phone, social media and video.

 “We know that this is a very difficult time for everyone, but please continue to stay safe and pray at home especially during Ramadan and adhere to the Government guidelines around social distancing, which we know saves lives.”

 Most Imams are already delivering speeches on a daily basis through their public address systems and may want to continue to use this platform to deliver the key messages and spiritual guidance to the community.

 Rafiq Sufi, Chair of Lancashire Council of Mosques said: “Everyone has a duty to follow the Government’s request to stay at home in order to protect the NHS and save lives. I urge residents to follow the instruction and avoid getting together with people outside of their immediate household to partake in Iftaar meals or Taraweeh when Ramadan starts end of next week.”

 Other festivals which will be affected by government guidelines to stay at home, include the upcoming Pagan Festival, Beltane, on 1st May. The Pagan Federation will be running an online Beltane festival on Facebook.com/paganfederation

 21st May Ascension Day and 31st May, Pentecost Sunday, are also key dates within the Christian community when traditionally there is a tradition of walks and outdoor services.

The Preston Nagar Kirtan scheduled for 17th May has been cancelled by the Sikh community.

 Neil Shaw added: “We thank the local communities for abiding to what is difficult to sacrifice, as these worships are core to people’s faith. We appreciate these are difficult times and we need the whole community to co-operate and trust the process to be balanced and respectful of the broad needs of the community.”