Community First

Letter from Martin Thacker, MBE, Leader of NEDDC

Dear all,

As you know, many shops opened their doors on 15th June.

We have therefore been working incredibly hard to make sure our own town centres are safe for visitors, residents and businesses. By following Government guidelines and working in partnership with Derbyshire County Council, partner organisations, retailers and businesses, we want to make sure everyone can shop safely.

Visitors to the district's four main town centres will notice a number of changes, such as: visible social distancing measures, extra cycle parking to reduce the need for public transport, and new seating areas to provide comfortable and safe areas to wait.

Retailers are also putting measures in place to limit the number of shoppers in store, arranging collection points, installing protective screens where appropriate and encouraging contactless payments.

We want to support our residents and businesses as much as possible, so will also be launching a campaign highlighting the benefits of shopping local, supporting our independent businesses and growing our economy. There is more information on the press release. Also, please keep a look out on social media for updates.

As businesses prepare to open their doors we are directing them to our website for safety and fire safety check advice and where to go to for more information. If you know of any businesses getting ready to start back, please make them aware of the support we are offering and also remind them to keep checking the Business Advice section of the website for updates, such as grants and loans. also has guidance for people who work in or run shops, branches, stores or similar environments.

The Department for Work and Pensions has launched two practical online support platforms through its new 'Good Place to Start' campaign. jobhelp offers essential advice to those looking for work, on which sectors are recruiting now, how to make the best of transferable skills and how to secure a new role, while employerhelp offers business advice on recruiting, including the matching service Find a Job.

June 15th is also the date from which face coverings must be worn on public transport in England. It has also been announced that members of the public attending hospital are also now strongly urged to wear a face covering. It is imperative we all follow the guidance given, to keep ourselves and others safe, as we continue to battle this virus.

We have recently updated our website with information for residents about the NHS test and trace system. Please make sure you also know how the system works, in case you are contacted. It's important we all follow the advice given to help slow down the spread of the virus and keep us all safe.

6,882 residents have now made contact with us. Staff are reporting that the length of time customers are on the phone is longer than ever before and it seems that customers are looking for reassurance and comfort as well as asking for service provision. Meanwhile, our pharmacy support has now made over 7,961 deliveries whilst 93 food deliveries have been provided to those with no other means of buying food. Rykneld Homes continue to distribute the generous food donations made though participating Parishes to residents in greatest need, primarily through the local foodbanks.

As of today Rykneld Homes' estate caretakers are resuming the cleaning and maintenance of communal areas in all blocks of flats in the District. As is now normal practice, each block has been risk assessed to ensure residents are kept safe.

Front line staff and volunteers at the forefront of the coronavirus response across England can access a new Psychological First Aid (PFA) training course. The free online course teaches responders how to give practical and emotional support on issues such as job worries, bereavement or isolation to those affected by coronavirus.

'Essential waste only' restrictions at Derbyshire County Council's recycling centres have now been dropped, however residents will still only be allowed in on certain days to help with social distancing. This means residents can now take the full range of waste usually accepted at any of the nine recycling centres across the county, as long as they make the trip on the correct day based on the last number of their vehicle's registration plate.

Visit Peak District and Derbyshire, the official tourist board for the area, is asking people to complete a Consumer Survey on the issues that matter most to them post COVID-19. There's the opportunity to enter into a prize draw to win a hamper from the Chatsworth Farm Estate and beer from Thornbridge Brewery!

Finally, our residents' magazine 'the NEWS' is now being distributed across the district. If you don't receive a copy, it can also be viewed online now. As mentioned in my previous emails, this is a special edition focusing on the work we have carried out during the pandemic and the support given to our communities.

Keep safe and well.


Martin Thacker
Cllr Martin Thacker MBE
Leader of the Council
North East Derbyshire District Council
District Council Offices
2013, Mill Lane
S42 6NG

Posted: Thu, 18 Jun 2020 14:00 by Sara Atkinson

Tags: Coronavirus