Coronavirus update: 5 June 2020

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5 June 2020   

A message from the leader of Hounslow Council, Cllr Steve Curran 

Cllr Curran

We’ve had another busy week with changes to lockdown taking place and new measures brought in by the government. We can now all meet with up to five friends or family members providing we stay outside, either in parks or gardens, but we must remember to keep two metres distance from anyone not in our own household.

There is positive news for our local businesses, more of them can start opening, providing they follow ‘Covid-19 secure guidelines’ and have systems in place for enabling customers and staff to keep to the two metres distance. We saw outdoor markets and car showrooms open from Monday, and from the 15 June more of our shops and businesses will be able to open. We must remember that it will start to get busier on the streets and on public transport. Transport for London (TfL) have today announced that you must use a face covering, this can be a fabric cover such as a scarf, when travelling on public transport from 15 June.

In order to help residents, businesses and visitors continue to get around the borough safely, and to encourage people to leave their cars at home, we will be continuing to open up more safe pedestrian and cycle routes,  to help enable people to keep their two metres distance. You can find out more about this here.   

On Monday some of our schools reopened for Reception, Year 1 and Year 6. Of our 53 primary schools, 24 of them reopened on Monday, and 26 more will be opening on Monday 8 June. All secondary schools bar one will be open from Monday. Please see the letter from Cllr Tom Bruce, Lead Member for Education, Children’s and Youth Services. We have also introduced help for teachers and school staff who may need to drive to work because of the restrictions on public transport, we have temporarily provided a discounted parking permit scheme for them for up to three months.  

Lockdown has been a very difficult time for businesses, and that’s why we have done our best to support them through the pandemic and will continue to do so. Some small and microbusinesses have missed out on the funds available from Government so far, and this has been recognised. We have been given £1.8m in funding to support small businesses, but this will only be enough to provide around 200 or so with funding. As a result, we are encouraging small businesses to sign up to our Covid-19 Business Recovery enewsletter so that we can give them priority notice when the application process goes live, and we will be demanding more funding from government so that we can help more of our businesses in the borough.

As a council, we have been giving a great deal of thought to how we harness all the positive things that have developed over the past few weeks, such as the great relationship with our diverse communities and partners; looking after 22,500 shielded residents and many more vulnerable residents through our hub; and the fantastic work of our NHS and frontline staff and everyone across the borough who has continued to work hard to put others first. Whilst it has been a very difficult time, there has been so much that has been good and heart-warming, and we have been working with our senior officers to develop how we move forward now - our Response and Recovery. I will be presenting a  a paper on Tuesday at our Cabinet Meeting on this matter. The paper considers all the difficulties we have gone through as a result of the pandemic, and will continue to need to manage, but also has many positives, setting the scene for our approach moving forwards, not just as a council, but as a borough. I would encourage you to look at the paper  – you can find it on our cabinet meetings on the website.

Have a great weekend, and stay safe

Cllr Curran signoff

Final do and don't use this image

Can you help care for our young trees?

Watering young trees

Today is World Environment Day. The theme is time for nature. The foods we eat, the air we breathe, the water we drink and the climate that makes our planet habitable all come from nature.  

These are of course exceptional times in which nature is sending us a message: To care for ourselves we must care for nature and our planet.  

Tree planting remains one of the many greening priorities of the Cleaner Greener Hounslow project.

In 2019/20 over 1,400 new trees were added to the existing number of trees throughout highways, parks and open spaces – with further planting planned this October.

When new trees are introduced throughout borough highways, parks and open spaces, their watering needs are supported by Hounslow Highways and Greenspace 360 crews. However, during dryer summer months, young trees (under two years old) would benefit from even more watering - new trees ideally require around 50 litres of water each week.

We would really appreciate your help to water any new trees that are accessible to you. Please visit our website for more guidance on watering young trees and their locations.

Mobile test centre available in Isleworth this Sunday and Monday 

coronavirus testing

The mobile coronavirus test centres form an essential part of the national testing programme and will be available again this Sunday and Monday.     

When: Sunday 7 June and Monday 8 June 10.30am-3.30pm     

Where: Grasshoppers’ Rugby Club, Syon Lane, Osterley, Isleworth, TW7 5PN.  

There is a mixture of walk-in and drive-through appointments at this test centre. You can book your appointment via the NHS website.   

You must register via the portal before attending a mobile testing unit and bring your 16-digit code or appointment confirmation with you on your mobile phone. Tests should be taken within five days of developing symptoms as this is when the test is most accurate. 

Criteria for testing:    

Anyone over the age of five who is symptomatic is now able to receive a test at one of the testing centres.    

 Coronavirus symptoms are:  

  • a high temperature  
  • a new, continuous cough  
  • a loss of or change to your sense of smell or taste  

This test can tell you if you have coronavirus at the time the swab sample is taken. The test to tell if you’ve ever had coronavirus (‘antibody test’) is not available yet.    

Booking appointments and requesting a walk-in appointment:

If you would like a walk-in appointment at the mobile testing centre, please put “unknown” in the box requiring your vehicle registration number. This should allow you to continue the booking process.

If you have any problems refer to the helpline detailed below, or you can use the 16-digit authorisation code that is sent to you via SMS and go to the testing centre anytime on foot or in a car between 10.30am and 3.30pm where local authority staff will help you.

Alternative testing provision 

Please note that if an appointment is not available at the Grasshoppers’ site then the same testing criteria apply for bookings at the Twickenham testing site, and they operate seven days a week. They do however only offer drive-in appointments.    

There are also home testing kits available, bookable via the same NHS website.

Questions or problems

If anyone has any problems booking via the portal, please contact the National Coronavirus Testing Helpline on 0300 303 2713.    

If you have any questions about testing, please contact 

Face coverings mandatory on public transport from 15 June

face covering

Transport secretary Grant Shapps announced face coverings will be mandatory on public transport from 15 June. 

Surgical masks will not be required and should only be utilised by front line NHS staff to protect themselves from coronavirus in healthcare settings. You can easily make suitable face coverings at home from t-shirts or socks. For some ideas on how to make a face covering visit the TfL website

Fines will be in place for anyone that refuses to comply with this new guidance on the public transport network. There are exemptions for very young children, disabled people and anyone with breathing difficulties.  

With more people using transport, the evidence suggests wearing face coverings offers some protection against the spread for the virus. Front line staff such as bus drivers will also be required to wear face coverings. 

It is advisable to always wash your hands before and after using face coverings. You can read further guidance about face coverings on the TfL website. 

You can find out more about the announcement on the Government's website.

Temporary changes to the Older Person’s Freedom Pass, 60+ Oyster photocard and English National Concessionary Scheme in London

Oyster pass travel changes

From Monday 15 June 2020, all customers with an Older Person’s Freedom Pass, 60+ Oyster photocard or English National Concessionary Scheme pass can only travel for free after 9am on weekdays, and at any time on weekends and bank holidays. If travel before 9am is essential, we advise pass holders to travel using pay as you go with a contactless card or mobile device, or an Oyster card.

Disabled Freedom Pass holders are unaffected by these changes and will still be able to travel at all times using their pass.

We are working hard to ensure those who have no option other than to travel using public transport can do so safely. Given the national requirement to maintain two metre social distancing, the capacity of buses and trains is hugely reduced. These temporary changes to the Older Person’s Freedom Pass and 60+ Oyster card pass during morning peak travel will help reduce the risk of crowding when it would be more difficult to maintain social distancing. 

We will communicate these changes directly to affected customers before they are implemented. We have been working closely with London Councils as they manage the Freedom Pass Scheme in London. If you have any queries about the changes to the Freedom Pass specifically, please contact London Council’s helpline on 0300 330 1433.

You can visit our website for information. 

Are you spending more time outdoors throughout the lockdown period?

cycling and keeping active

Many of us have explored new areas in our communities and tried new outdoor activities throughout this time, maybe you’ve explored different parks or started cycling. Have you enjoyed these activities? If so, what aspects have you enjoyed the most? Outdoor exercise is good for both our physical and mental health and wellbeing.

As we begin to come out of lockdown, we have an opportunity to design new daily routines and we want to encourage you to think about how you can incorporate this daily form of outdoor exercise into your ‘new normal.’ You could incorporate active travel into your commute or take advantage of any extra time at home to develop more confidence in cycling or other physical activity routines. Cycling or walking also helps to maintain social distancing and improve air quality which will help protect our essential workers and vulnerable residents.

A few of the many things the council has done to support you to keep active and continue outdoor exercise: 

We are keeping our parks and open spaces open and safe

We have worked hard to ensure safety and social distancing measures were in place so people can enjoy them for a walk or exercise during these challenging times. Walk and cycle to parks if you can.

We are offering Free Cycle Training and Servicing 

We will be offering free 1:1 cycle training for those who wish to switch, as well as promoting the Government’s cycle to work scheme, a subsidised bike loan scheme, enabling participants to make substantial savings on the cost of buying a bike and equipment and spread the cost of the purchase through a salary sacrifice scheme. You can also get your bike checked to ensure it is safe to ride.

We are closing roads to keep you safe

A range of traffic-management measures are being rolled out across Hounslow to help keep pedestrians and cyclists healthy and safe during the coronavirus pandemic. If you can, walk or cycle instead of using public transport or cars.

We are providing free physical activity sessions and activities

Not only does physical activity benefit our physical health it can be great for our mental health too.One You Hounslow offers a wide range of activities where ever you are in you physical activity journey. Use the time you used to spend commuting to join one of sessions to keep active at home.

Coping with anxiety during the coronavirus pandemic 

Every mind matters

The coronavirus outbreak means that life is changing for all of us for a while. It may cause you to feel anxious, stressed, worried, sad, bored, lonely or frustrated.  

It's important to remember it is ok to feel this way and that everyone reacts differently. Remember, this situation is temporary and, for most of us, these difficult feelings will pass. 

There are some simple things you can do to help you take care of your mental health and wellbeing during times of uncertainty. Doing so will help you think clearly, and make sure you are able to look after yourself and those you care about. 

Here are 10 ways you can help improve your mental health and wellbeing if you are worried or anxious about the coronavirus outbreak. For specific tips and advice while staying at home, read our advice on maintaining your mental wellbeing while staying at home.  

Public Health England’s Every Mind Matters campaign for mental health has 10 tips to help if you are worried about the coronavirus.  

 NHS Test and Trace   

Test and Trace













The Government has launched NHS Test and Trace to make sure we can localise where coronavirus is and stop the spread wherever possible. 

If you have coronavirus symptoms (a high temperature, a new continuous cough, or a loss of, or change to your sense of smell or taste): 

You and your household must immediately self-isolate. You should book a coronavirus test immediately via the NHS website 

If you test positive, the NHS Test and Trace team will be in contact with you to collate a list of people you have been in close, recent contact with and the places you have visited. It is important you respond as soon as possible so that the NHS can provide appropriate advice to those who have been in contact with you.   

You will be alerted by NHS Test and Trace if you have been in contact with someone who has tested positive with coronavirus. 

This alert will come by text or email. You must then isolate for 14 days. 

Learn more about NHS Test and Trace.  

Fraudsters target Test and Trace users 

Scam alert

Full Fact, the UK’s independent fact checking charity, is reporting that scammers could be exploiting the launch of the NHS Test and Trace service. Watch out for fake Test and Trace messages that are actually phishing attempts to obtain personal information. There are a number of ways to verify if you are being contacted by genuine NHS Test and Trace staff. 

Real contact tracers will never do any of the following: 

  • Ask you for details of card or bank account numbers 
  • Ask you to provide or fill in social media login details 
  • Ask you to set up a pin 
  • Ask you to download anything 

You can visit our website for information and advice on protecting yourself from scams.

New health measures at the UK border 

Travel UK border

New health measures at the UK border have been announced to guard against a second wave of coronavirus infections. 

From this Monday, there will be new rules in place for entering the UK because of coronavirus. The rules are for residents and visitors. 

 When these rules are in place, you will:  

  • Need to provide your journey and contact details when you travel to the UK 
  • Not be allowed to leave the place you’re staying for the first 14 days you’re in the UK except in very limited situations (known as ‘self-isolating’).  

You do not need to do these things now. But you should check the latest public health advice on coronavirus before you travel, or if you’ve just arrived in the UK. 

You can find out more information about the new measures at the UK border on the Government's website

Breast feeding  

breast feeding

It's Breastfeeding Celebration Week.  

Baby Café Hounslow continues to offer feeding support in Hounslow. To receive telephone support from your local infant feeding counsellor, please contact the Health Visiting team on 0208 9733490, or find more information here. 

NCT is running its Infant Feeding Line 0300 330 0700 (choose option 1) The line is open every day from 8am to midnight. It is staffed by a breastfeeding counsellor who can support you if you have any questions or concerns about breastfeeding, formula milk or solids. 

National Breastfeeding Helpline: 0300 100 0212  Help and support 365 days per year 9.30am - 9.30pm 

La Leche League Helpline: Staffed by trained volunteer breastfeeding counsellors who can support mums with questions about breastfeeding by phone. Call 0845 120 2918. Open 8am - 1pm   

The Breastfeeding Network Helpline: Trained volunteers offering telephone support 

Telephone: 0300 100 0212 / Helpline (Bengali/Sylheti): 0844 856 4003 

Baby Buddy App:  a useful resource with infant feeding films. Download from apple store, google play or web app   

Staying active and living with autism


If you or someone you know is living with autism, going outside can be an important part of your daily routine and essential for your mental wellbeing.    

Autism Hounslow can help support you and provides some useful information on tips and advice for autistic people and families. You can access a guide to local services for autism support here  

The National Autistic Society also has the latest guidance on coronavirus and its impact on autistic people. 

New business grant for small and microbusiness


The Council’s Discretionary Business Support Grant for small and microbusiness in Hounslow will be accepting applications from the anticipated launch on Wednesday 10 June.

The new Grant is intended to aide those businesses who have so far not been able to benefit from funding from central government during the coronavirus pandemic. 


In order to qualify small and microbusinesses must meet a set of criteria designed to target the funding at those businesses who have suffered the greatest loss of income as a result of Covid-19. Hounslow has been awarded £1.8m and will be distributing grants of £25,000, £10,000 and £5,000 depending on businesses property costs, this will provide support to an estimated 200 businesses.     

Full details of the scheme and the criteria required are provided in the Discretionary Business Support Grant Policy.   

How to apply  

To receive notifications on when it goes live along with a link to the application form, available via the Council website, please subscribe to Covid-19 Business Recovery enewsletter.  


Grant funding will be issued on a first come first served basis to small and micro businesses who have applied and meet the criteria, and we hope to complete the process and issue the funds to the approved businesses by the end of June. 

Entertainment and culture to enjoy at home 

brentford football club

Join Brentford Community Trust’s Talent Show

Brentford FC Community Sports Trust is looking for talented children and youngsters to join their online talent competition. Whether it is magic tricks or sport skills, the talent show has something for everyone and helps keep your children entertained while home schooling.  

All you need to do is upload a video of your talent here. 

You can find out more about the talent show on their website. 

The Trust has also launched a new #BeeWell campaign with Brentford FC’s stadium builders EcoWorld 

Brentford FC Community Sports Trust have launched its #BeeWell campaign, which aims to support children and adults with their physical and mental wellbeing. With a recent survey highlighting how young people’s mental health has worsened since the coronavirus crisis, the campaign aims to offer an array of online activities to support adults and young people during the crisis. The campaign is being supported by EcoWorld London, the Principal Partner of Brentford FC. 

Read more on their website about the different #BeeWell activities you can get involved with to stay active and look after your mental wellbeing.  

Calling all children and young people in Hounslow - take part in the Virtual London Youth Games!

Virtual Games

The LYG Virtual Games is open to all children and young people from Hounslow, who can compete in twelve challenges to earn points for Hounslow. A leaderboard with the latest Borough standings will be updated every week.  

Starting Monday , the LYG Virtual Games will take place over four weeks, giving children and young people the chance to represent Hounslow in a series of sport related challenges that can be done at home, school, or while out for daily exercise. All the challenges relate to different sports and have been set by young Londoners, for young Londoners. Individual prizes are also up for grabs. Young people are encouraged to share videos of their challenge attempts on social media using #ThisIsLYG to be in with a chance of winning the weekly MVP (Most Valuable Player) award.  

For the latest information and for details of how to take part visit their website. 

Watermans new online activities programme for children and young people with disabilities 

Watermans programme for disabled children

This week, Watermans launched its brand new online programme for children and young people with disabilities. They are working in partnership with our Short Breaks programme. Watermans usually delivers a busy year-round programme of activities for these children and their families but now, it will all take place via Zoom and other online platforms.

The ten-week programme features workshops with International Magician of the Year-winner, US magician Kevin Spencer, movement specialist Bill Leslie and African Drummer Sandra Dyer, as well as exclusive digital children's theatre shows every weekend. Bringing this programme online to meet the needs of families with disabled children has been a complex project, but Watermans realised early on that this was a group that would face additional challenges during lockdown and would need activities. Most excitingly, this online programme is something Watermans envisages developing and maintaining after lockdown is long gone so that even children with special needs, who find it difficult to get out of the house at the best of times, can benefit from creativity and the arts.

Read about more about the programme on their website

Online resources for health, education and wellbeing 

New for adults, young people, children and families;  

Mindful Walking MIND is encouraging mindful walking during National Walking Month. 

Travel to Tokyo Team GB and Paralympics GB’s official, free programme for children aged 5-11 and their families.   

Outdoor classroom Day is offering lots of lovely ideas and inspiration for playful nature and encouraging children to get outdoors.  

Spotify is introducing Daily Wellness, a personalised mix of grounding motivational podcasts and feel-good music that can help you find positivity, mindfulness, or peace throughout your day. 

#Daily Mile At Home is here to help children stay active with their parents/carers, 15 minutes of jogging or running, front door to front door, with some extra challenges along the way to keep everyone motivated.   

Ordinance Survey Family Maps to Colour In are great for some stress-busting, free PDF to download to print at home.  

Parasport has created accessible home workouts that are ideal for wheelchair users who are just getting started, or haven't been active for a while. 

Couch to 5k is a nine-week running programme designed for complete beginners by the NHS. 

Visit for more support and information.   

Better on demand provides access to workouts for free on the Better UK app, available from the Apple or Google Play stores. Enter BETTERFREE as the Club Access Code, club ref: Gunnersbury Park Sports Hub.

Joe Wicks  also known as the Body Coach or, the nation’s PE teacher, is now offering virtual classes for seniors on his YouTube channel.

Make Movement your Mission designed by Later Life Training, includes a series of short online regular movement sessions done either in a chair or standing holding onto a support.

Mind’s guide for young people is available with information for young people who are worried about coronavirus and want to know how to cope with changes to their lives.

Sport Impact works with schools across Hounslow to give pupils the best opportunities in PE, Sport and Health, as well as encouraging Leadership and Volunteering. The team has created some Stay at Home Challenges to support learning whilst in the home.

OurParks coaches Ange and Premika are encouraging exercise at home and workout sessions via their facebook or YouTube channel. Why not try the Saturday 10am Live HIIT Workout.

Brentford  FC Community Sports Trust  has some great free fitness sessions for Hounslow residents including Pilates, Yoga and chair based exercise for over 60s, all part of their #BeeeatHome campaign.

Visit for more support and information.

Latest information and advice

If you think you know someone who’d like to receive this e-newsletter, forward it on and they can subscribe here. 

The Council has a coronavirus advice webpage which is updated daily with the latest local information for residents and businesses. 

Advice in accessible formats and different languages

You can also follow us on social media using the links below. 

The latest information on coronavirus in general is available on the Government’s website. 

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