Easing of Covid-19 restrictions
Further coronavirus restrictions were cautiously lifted on 17 May. Some of the rules on what you can and cannot do may have changed but many restrictions remain in place.
The 17 May changes are as follows:
• The rest of the accommodation sector will open.
• Outdoor gatherings of up to 30 people will be permitted.
• Indoors, the rule of 6 or two households will apply.
• Indoor hospitality will reopen. Venues that serve alcohol must provide table service.
• Indoor entertainment and attractions, including cinemas, museums and soft play will reopen.
• Indoor exercise classes and adult group sports can resume.
• Performances and sporting events in indoor and outdoor venues can resume with capacity limits.
• Up to 30 people will be able to attend significant life events including weddings, receptions, christenings and bar mitzvahs.
Think carefully to avoid the spread of Covid-19
West Sussex took a significant step towards normality when many businesses were able to reopen more fully and close contact between friends and family was allowed again from 17 May.
But people have been asked to think carefully to ensure the most vulnerable avoid unnecessary exposure to the ongoing risk of Covid-19.
West Sussex Director of Public Health, Alison Challenger, said: “The latest easing of restrictions from 17 May, in line with the government’s roadmap, is testament to everyone who has followed the guidelines during the pandemic.
“Some restrictions still apply though, and we must continue to protect the most vulnerable from the ongoing risk of Covid-19.
“People have been given the personal choice whether or not they resume close contact with family and friends. But it is a choice that should be made carefully as close contact, including hugging, increases the risk of spreading Covid-19.
“The best way we can keep ourselves and others safe is to take free lateral flow tests to ensure we are not spreading the virus, and to get vaccinated when we are eligible.
“We should also remember to keep washing our hands regularly, wear a face covering when required, keep socially distanced from others where possible and let in fresh air. These simple steps make a big difference in stopping Covid-19.”
You can find out how to order or collect free lateral flow tests for people without symptoms of coronavirus on the West Sussex County Council website.
You should self-isolate immediately if you develop symptoms of Covid-19 and book a free test as soon as possible via the NHS website or by calling 119.
Schoolchildren learn about digital connections
Balfour Beatty has provided St Augustine's Catholic Primary School in Scaynes Hill with £1,000 for new IT equipment to help them make the most of a new Full Fibre broadband connection provided by the Government.
St Augustine's was identified by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport as one of 500 rural schools around the UK that required support to access Full Fibre broadband and provided them with the necessary funding to install it.
Balfour Beatty is helping Mid Sussex District Council to rollout Full Fibre broadband infrastructure to rural communities in Mid Sussex. To help the children learn more about the importance of digital infrastructure and how it affects our everyday lives, they took part in a competition to design posters that show what digital connections mean to them. The winners were Alex and Lily in Upper Key Stage 2, Lexie in Lower Key Stage 2 and Melissa who is in Key Stage 1.
Northern Arc infrastructure progress
Homes England has appointed Jackson Civil Engineering and John Sisk and Sons to build essential road infrastructure that will support the Northern Arc development in Burgess Hill. Work is already underway at both the Eastern and Western sides of the Northern Arc site to construct the new road network.
One of the main benefits of Homes England managing the Northern Arc development in Burgess Hill is that they can ensure essential infrastructure is delivered alongside the new homes. The road and associated roundabouts to the west of the Northern Arc, together with improved pedestrian and cycle routes for sustainable travel, will help to ease traffic pressures and provide better public transport connections for residents.
Jackson Civil Engineering is building the Western Link road connecting the A2300 in the north to Jane Murray Way in the south, with new roundabouts built at the intersections with the existing highways. Construction of the northern half of the A2300 roundabout is scheduled to be completed later this month (May 2021) and this will be followed by the construction of the southern half of the roundabout and main carriageway.
John Sisk and Sons is working on the Eastern Bridge and Link Road which will join Freeks Lane to Isaacs lane, providing pedestrian and vehicle access to the eastern part of the Northern Arc site. Sisk have now finished the initial site clearance along Isaacs Lane and at the future bridge location, as well as ground investigation for underground services. Now that this is complete, the next step is to limit the environmental impact during construction by erecting fencing to protect tree trunks and branches from moving machinery, as well as protecting tree roots from excavation.
For all the latest news on the Northern Arc project visit www.burgesshill.net or www.facebook.com/northernarc
West Sussex County Council election results
The Conservatives have retained control of West Sussex County Council following the local elections on Thursday 6 May.
After the votes were counted, the Liberal Democrats remain the largest minority party at County Hall.
The new composition of the 70-member council is:
- Conservatives: 48 councillors
- Liberal Democrats: 10 councillors
- Labour: 9 councillors
- Green Party: 1 councillor
- Independent: 1 councillor
- Local Alliance: 1 councillor
The full results for the election can be found at www.westsussex.gov.uk/about-the-council/how-the-council-works/elections/county-council-elections-6-may-2021/
Katy Bourne re-elected in third term as Sussex Police Crime Commissioner
Katy Bourne has been re-elected as the Sussex Police & Crime Commissioner for another term of office. She will serve for a period of three years (as opposed to the normal four-year term) following the postponement of the election, initially planned for May 2020, due to Covid-19 restrictions.
The Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) is responsible for setting the strategic objectives for policing in Sussex. This includes setting and updating a police and crime plan, setting the force budget and precept, and appointing, or where necessary dismissing, the Chief Constable.
The results of the 2021 Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner election are as follows:
||First preference votes
||Second preference votes
|Jamie Frank Bennet (Liberal Democrats)
|Kahina Suzanna Bouhassane (Green Party)
|Katy Elizabeth Bourne (Conservative)
|Paul Adrian Richards (Labour and Cooperative Party)
|Roy Thomas Williams (Independent)