Hounslow Matters Newsletter: 05 March 2021

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International Women's Day Banner


Friday 05 March 2021 

Join us to celebrate International Women’s Day 2021

International Women's Day

International Women’s Day, on Monday 8 March, is an annual celebration which recognises and showcases the achievements of women around the world. In recognition of this day, Hounslow Council would like to invite local residents to a free virtual event on Wednesday 10 March 2021.

This year’s theme is #ChooseToChallenge and the event aims to help raise awareness of the impact of COVID-19 on women, along with exploring issues around domestic violence, particularly during the pandemic.

Topics at the event will range from the impact of COVID-19 on women in the borough to women in sport, along with readings from Monuments, an anthology written by Hounslow Action for Youth. There will also be a Q&A for attendees to ask questions and engage with the panellists.

Panellists include Aldona Zywicka-Thornton, Hounslow Parent/Carer Forum, Oonah Lacey, a volunteer at food banks across the borough and Natalie Sexton, a Harlequin coach and Hounslow resident.

Book here

New plan to deliver a fairer, greener and stronger Hounslow

corporate plan

Hounslow Council has launched a new corporate plan which sets out an ambitious vision for the borough, putting residents at the heart of Council services in the context of COVID-19 and beyond.

The plan, approved at this week’s Borough Council meeting, sets out eight outcomes that the Council will work with partners and communities to achieve. It is a vision for a borough where:

  • People live in good homes and pleasant neighbourhoods
  • Businesses flourish and local people enjoy good quality jobs
  • Residents and businesses benefit from a sustainable and green borough
  • People are connected and feel part of a community
  • People are safe
  • Children reach their potential
  • Residents are healthy and active
  • Residents receive the right help and support

More information

Council approves 2021/22 budget

Cllr Rajawat

Hounslow Council’s budget for 2021/22 to protect services and lead Hounslow through recovery was approved at Borough Council on Tuesday. 

The budget sets out how the Council will meet the continued challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, continue to provide frontline services and deliver its priorities for the borough outlined in its ambitious Recovery Plan: One Hounslow Forward Together.

Find out what the budget means for you.

More information

Council launches new approach to help keep Hounslow safe

Safer communities

Hounslow Council has launched the ‘Safer Communities Strategy’ for the next three years. The new strategy outlines how the Council, the Hounslow Community Safety Partnership Board and other strategic partnerships will address crime and community safety concerns over the next three years. The aim of this strategy is to work with our communities to keep Hounslow a low crime borough and a safe place to live, work, study and visit.

Find out more

Hounslow Council support for residents hit by strike

Feltham bus

A potential bus strike has been announced affecting some bus routes in Hounslow on Friday 5 March and Saturday 6 March.

London Buses’ have issued a warning of major disruption to West London bus services due to industrial action. It is expected that all of Hounslow Borough will be affected.

To combat the disruption and support residents who have no other option but to drive for all or part of their journey, the Council has announced that drivers will be able to park in any on-street pay-to-park bay beyond the normal maximum 2 or 4 hour stay without further charge.

To benefit from this, the driver must purchase the maximum permitted stay in the normal way using Pay-to-Park or a pay and display machine. Although the ticket will show the parking period ending after 2 or 4 hours, we will not issue a penalty charge notice providing the car is moved before the start of the next day’s paid-for parking period.

This special arrangement will run between 08:00 Friday 5 March and 20:00 Saturday 6 March 2021.

Residents are advised to not travel unless absolutely necessary and if they have to travel, to check live travel information on the Transport for London website.

Find out more

Back to school bus service

DfT Back to school

From 8 March, as children across the borough return to school for the Spring Term, Transport for London is planning to run bus services in a similar way to how they did during the autumn term. This means:  

  • Routes with extra buses being provided: 33, 116, 117, 203, 272, H25, H28, H20, H22.
  • Plus school routes: 635, 681.
  • Routes with school priority buses running between 0730 and 0900 (*denotes until 0930): 33, 81, 111,120, 190, 195, 222, 235, 237, 267, 285, 337, 490, E2, E8, H22, H37, H98, H91.
  • Routes with school priority buses running between 1430 and 1630: 33, 81, 111, 120, 190, 235, 237, 267, 281, 490, H22, H37, H98.

These arrangementsare planned tobe in place untilat leastthe end of the current term. TfL will confirm arrangements for after Easter in due course.   

Find out more

Don’t delay – start looking for your child’s free childcare and early education place today

Free childcare

If you have a child aged 2, 3 and 4 you may be entitled to free childcare and early education. Don't let your child miss out - start looking at your options now.

Find out more

Make No Smoking Day your time to quit

No smoking day

Join thousands of others this coming No Smoking Day, Wednesday 10 March, to make this day your time to quit.

If you’ve been feeling stressed and anxious about the impact the pandemic has had on your life, it can make quitting smoking at this time feel especially hard. But it doesn’t have to be stressful, there are ways to quit smoking and stay calm in the process. People who have quit smoking have less anxiety, depression and stress, plus better mood than those who continue to smoke.

To help you stay motivated along the way it’s important to remember that quitting has so many short and long term benefits – as well as helping your mental wellbeing, your physical health will improve, you’ll save money and you’ll be protecting those you love from second hand smoke.

There are lots of different tools and resources available across to help you quit.

More information

Food Action Waste Week

Food action waste week

This week Hounslow has been taking part in the UK’s first ever Food Waste Action Week.

Wasting food is one of the biggest contributors to climate change. The UK wastes 4.5 million tonnes of edible food every year, which is enough to make an extra 10 million meals.

In Hounslow alone, almost half of residents refuse bins are made up of food waste, and over 20 per cent of food found in food waste bins across the borough was avoidable waste that could have been eaten.

Small changes to everyone’s daily habits can help reduce food waste and save the planet.

Some great ways to start reducing your waste are:

  • Prep your meals before you shop
  • Make tasty meals with leftovers
  • Check your fridge temperature
  • Know the difference between ‘use by’ and ‘best before’
  • Help others in need by using free food sharing apps like OLIO or Too Good to Go

Find out more

Have your say and help shape the future of town centres in Hounslow

Have your say on the future of the town centres

Following on from the first phase of our engagement, where we spoke to a wide range of residents, stakeholders and local businesses to gather their ideas for the future of our four high streets; Brentford, Chiswick, Feltham and Hounslow, we are excited to share the second phase with our communities.

Following the ideas we received, workshops with teams across the Council and advice from our specialist consultants, the draft vision for each town centre has been designed around a number of themes, under which are proposed actions or projects.

Your feedback on these themes and the associated ideas will help shape the final vision documents.

Local residents can also join our online community workshops. Places are limited:

  • Feltham Town Centre community workshop, Thursday 11 March, 5.00pm to 6.30 pm, book your place here
  • Hounslow Town Centre community workshop, Thursday 11 March from 5.00pm to 6.30pm, book your place here
  • Brentford Town Centre community workshop, Monday 8 March from 5.00pm to 6.30pm, book your place here
  • Chiswick workshop is full.

Residents can also submit their feedback online. This engagement runs from 19 February to 15 March.

More information

Laptop donations this weekend

Laptops for Schools

The Council and local organisations, like Hounslow Promise and Richmond Rugby Club, are continuing to help to supply extra laptops for digitally excluded pupils in our borough. 

Can you donate a laptop and help a pupil make a success of learning from home? 

Find out more

The census is coming on Sunday 21 March

Census 2021

By filling in your census, you will help shape your community for the next 10 years.

Find out more

Do you need help with a European Union Settlement Scheme application?

EU settlement service

If you (or a family member) are an EU/EEA/Swiss national living or working in the UK, you need to settle your status before Brexit. Settling your status will allow you access to vital public services.

Hounslow Citizens Advice can provide assistance to vulnerable residents living in Hounslow and Ealing to make an application through the EU Settlement Scheme. The service is free, confidential and impartial.

Call the advice line on 0808 278 7830 or email referrals@hounslowcabs.org.uk.

Find out more

Sign up now for Garden Waste collections

Garden Waste Service

Hounslow Council’s garden waste collection service provides residents with 25 fortnightly collections from 1 April 2021 to 31 March 2022, with a break of two weeks over the Christmas period. The service is a convenient, low-cost way for residents with gardens to dispose of cuttings throughout the year.

The cost of the service is £55 or £27.50 for those in receipt of Council Tax Reduction. Residents are advised to sign up before 1 April to ensure they receive the service in full.

Sign up here

Choose how you exercise with This Girl Can

This Girl Can

This Girl Can, funded by The National Lottery, believes that there’s no “right” way to get active- if it gets your heart rate up, it counts!

Inspired by International Women’s Day? Visit This Girl Can website for information on activities, homes exercise, Disney Dance along for families and much more.

Advice and guidance is also available on the OneYou Hounslow website with plenty more for both Adults and Children.  

Find out more

Gunnersbury Park activities this March

Gunnersbury Park

Learn about the women of Gunnersbury for International Women’s Day and celebrate Syrian cooking in a virtual cook along.

Celebrating International Women’s Day, Monday 8 March at 6pm. Discover the women who shaped Gunnersbury this International Women’s Day. This virtual event will explore the Viking noblewoman Gunhilda to the ‘unscrupulous’ Alice Perrers, mistress of King Edward III; Georgian Princess Amelia and Miss Susan Smee, Acton’s first woman mayor. Tickets cost £10.

Syrian Cookalong, Friday 19 March at 6pm. This two hour virtual cooking workshop of traditional Syrian fare will teach you how to make a traditional Syrian vegan main course Harrak Osba’o and a Fatoush Salad with Local Syrian Chef Majeda Khouri at Syrian Sunflower Kitchen. Learn about the most important features of Syrian Cuisine and hear stories about Syria, specifically about the City of Damascus. Tickets cost £15. 

More information

Share your views about Test and Trace

Residents survey

We are looking for parents of school aged children or people who are going out to work during lockdown to spend around 50 minutes talking to us about what ‘rapid testing’ and ‘Test & Trace’ means to them, in relation to COVID-19.

We can either talk to you over the phone, or online. The information we collect from talking to people will be used to develop messaging and interventions, which will help people feel more able and supported to get tested or engage with Test & Trace in an effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19 within the community.

Participants will be compensated for their time and all conversations will be treated with the strictest confidentiality.

Register here

Do you know if you qualify as a carer?

Do you qualify as a carer

If you help a relative or friend without payment because of a condition, illness, disability, serious injury, mental health issue, addiction or issues related to aging - you're recognised as a carer.

You may be looking after your neighbour, your parent, a sibling, or a friend and not see yourself as a carer but you are eligible for certain benefits if this is you. 

You could be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine sooner than you might be otherwise. 

To do so, you must register as a carer at your GP. Contact your practice to register now.

Difficulties registering or any questions about the vaccine? Email socialcare.vaccination@hounslow.gov.uk

Find out more

If you're 60 or older or clinically vulnerable, book your vaccine - even if you don't have an invite

COVID-19 vaccine

If you are aged 60 or over, are clinically vulnerable, a frontline worker or get Carer's Allowance, you can now book your COVID-19 vaccination through the NHS website even if you haven’t yet received a letter. Appointments are available in Ealing and Wembley. 

You must book your appointment before you go to a vaccination centre.  We are aware of other scam messages circulating – please ignore them. The NHS will never ask you for money or your bank details for your vaccination – it is free. 

You can book an appointment now if:

  • you are aged 60 or over
  • you are at high risk from coronavirus (clinically extremely vulnerable)
  • you are an eligible frontline health or social care worker
  • you have a condition that puts you at higher risk (clinically vulnerable)
  • you are a main carer for someone at high risk from coronavirus

You can book appointments at a larger vaccination centres or a pharmacy that provides COVID-19 vaccinations.

Book here

Get tested and get ready for the start of school

COVID-19 rapid test

If you’re a parent or a guardian, you can get a FREE rapid test for yourself in preparation for the kids going back to school on Monday. If you don’t have COVID-19 symptoms, getting tested regularly will help to protect yourself and your family as we all follow the Government’s roadmap out of lockdown.

Rapid testing is available for those who do not have COVID-19 symptoms. If you think you have COVID-19 symptoms book a test online via the NHS website or call 119

We have rapid test appointments available this weekend!

  • Heston Library – New Heston Road, Hounslow TW5 0LW – Open 6.30am-7.30pm Mon-Fri, or 8.00am-4.00pm Sat/Sun
  • Hounslow House – 7 Bath Road, Hounslow TW3 3EB – Open 8.00am-4.00pm, Mon-Sun
  • Isleworth Library – Twickenham Road, Isleworth TW7 7EU – Open 8.00am-4.00pm, Mon-Sun
  • Staines Rugby Club, Snakey Lane, Feltham TW13 7NB – Open 8.00am-4.00pm, Mon-Sun

You can drop-in, book online here www.hounslow.gov.uk/rapidtest or call to make an appointment: 0207 084 9697

PLEASE NOTE: If you test positive, or your child shows any symptoms of COVID-19, you should self-isolate at home and not send them to school on Monday.

Book a rapid test

COVID-19 support announced in Spring Budget

Budget 2021

The Chancellor has announced a package of measures to support businesses and the self-employed in the Budget. 

Support includes: 

  • Furlough has been extended until the end of September 2021. 
  • Self-Employment Income Support Scheme has been extended until September 2021, and will also be open to those who became self-employed in tax year 2019 to 2020.
  • New Restart Grant Scheme will help high street shops and hospitality venues reopen. 
  • Business rates holiday for retail, leisure and hospitality businesses extended until the end of June 2021.
  • Launch of Recovery Loan Scheme to help businesses through the next stage of recovery.
  • Employers will receive £3,000 for each new apprentice hired between 1 April and 30 September 2021. 
  • Culture Recovery Fund has been extended to support national and local cultural organisations. 
  • Reduced VAT rate for the hospitality and tourism sector has been extended until 30 September 2021.

Find out more

Latest information

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 regularly 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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