The City of Durham Parish Council is continuing its work to support the local community during Covid-19. Here are just a few of the actions that we have taken:
Signposting vulnerable residents to the most appropriate support services during the pandemic.
Providing the public with the latest Government advice, i.e. regulations around social distancing, the job retention scheme, etc.
Encouraging volunteers to sign up to the NHS and County Council volunteer schemes to support those who are vulnerable and shielding.
Providing emergency grant funding to local Food Bank services in Durham City.
Providing emergency grant funding to local domestic abuse charity Harbour in light of increased demand on their services.
Contracting the services of retail consultant Graham Soult to provide businesses with free and independent advice on how to change and improve their operations to be more resilient to the pandemic.
Provided an unprecedented level of grant funding from any Parish Council to its local businesses in the form of a £30,000 Covid-19 business resilience grant fund to support the purchase of PPE, protective screening, hand sanitisers, etc.
Funded the provision of hand sanitisers, social distancing ambassadors and signage to support the re-opening of the popular indoor and outdoor market.
Increased grant funding to local community and voluntary organisations in light of the increased pressure on their services – services like Sanctuary 21, the WI, Blind Life in Durham, Durham Hospital Radio, St Cuthbert’s Hospice, etc. have been given much needed support.
Working with key stakeholders in the City lobbying for free parking and the provision of toilet facilities as the City re-opens from lockdown.
Currently working with the County Council to ensure that the £469,000 given to DCC from the Government to support the safe re-opening of High Streets is spent as effectively as possible.
Lobbying the County Council to suspend the closure of New Elvet Bridge.
Working with Durham University to support Green Move Out day.
Continuing Council services as usual through the use of virtual meetings – new planning and licensing applications being considered as normal, projects being progressed with the Environment Committee, a successful annual audit carried out, Council Strategy 2020-21 agreed, etc.
Poppy knitting project launched with community groups supporting from home to mark 2020 as an important year of Remembrance.
Launched a community planting project whereby the Parish Council has purchased bedding plants from local nurseries which may have otherwise been binned due to Covid-19 and the lockdown and working with local residents’ groups to provide these across the Parish area. Colourful plants planted across the parish to cheer everyone up in a time of gloom and over £200 raised from our honesty boxes which went towards a local hospice and a charity which supports the homeless.
Set of principles agreed as a Council to support the re-opening of City businesses such as supporting temporary license applications for use of outdoor space where appropriate to allow for social distancing.
Representing the Parish in responding to important consultations such as the Main Modifications consultation on the County Durham Plan and new Traffic Regulations Orders.
Progressing the Neighbourhood Plan.