Covid-19 update from Bridgend County Borough

Council reveals pandemic recovery plans

Plans have been agreed for how the council will recover from the impact of the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic. Based around three key stages, the plans look at the gradual easing of national lockdown requirements as efforts continue to minimise the spread of the virus. The first stage, Restart, will look at what actions are immediately necessary in order to reintroduce council services. The second stage of the plans – Recover – seeks to develop a strategic response covering the next 12 to 18 months which will support the council as it emerges from the crisis. The third part of the plan – Renew – will look at creating a new operating model for the council, possibly with a shift in the working culture to take into account issues such as greater agile working, a reduced need for office space, increased focus on digital solutions, greater local and regional partnership working, community leadership and more. A cross-party Recovery Panel has been created to help shape, inform and advise Cabinet on progress throughout the three stages of the plan.

Events rescheduled at Grand Pavilion

All shows set to take place between October 2020 and January 2021 at the Grand Pavilion in Porthcawl: will be rescheduled or cancelled. This follows previous announcements on events at the pavilion and includes the annual festive pantomime. People who have already bought tickets for forthcoming shows will be refunded or have their tickets transferred to rescheduled dates. The venue contact customers directly about this in coming weeks and months. The situation will be regularly reviewed in line with latest national guidance and the Grand Pavilion will be open once more as soon as it is safe to do so.

Trecco Bay planning to reopen

Subject to Welsh Government agreement, the Trecco Bay Holiday Park at Porthcawl is expected to reopen on 13 July. With pandemic restrictions in place to limit the potential of exposure and protect health and well-being, discussions are underway regarding the provision of RNLI patrols off Trecco Bay.

Free school meals this summer

Food parcels for pupils eligible for free school meals will continue to be delivered throughout the summer holidays. Each weekly food parcel contains enough food items to provide both breakfast and lunch for a child for five days. For pupils with special dietary requirements, a five-day frozen meal option is available. The food parcels, which started at the end of April, replaced the packed lunch provision that was put in place when schools closed in March. Around 5,000 food parcels are delivered each week to homes across the county borough, and they include a variety of fresh fruit and vegetables, pasta, sauces and tinned food. To date, the provision has included the school Easter holidays and the school spring half-term break, and now will also include the summer holiday break between 27 July and 31 August.

Clarity on food parcel process

After evaluating a range of options, the council continues to believe that the delivery of food parcels containing up to five days’ worth of nutritious breakfast and lunch items is the most effective way of providing free school meals during the crisis. It has prevented undertaking unnecessary travel during the height of the pandemic, has avoided potential problems with access and has provided an extra level of reassurance that children are receiving the food. The system is continuing to support safeguarding arrangements during the pandemic by enabling additional face-to-face contact from school staff and the Vulnerable Groups team, and as well as supporting Welsh food suppliers, each parcel takes into account specific dietary requirements. They also include ‘life-skill’ recipe cards which have encouraged children and adults to prepare meals together, learn about nutrition and more.

Accessing foodbanks

Keep up to date with details of which foodbanks are open and how they can be accessed during the ongoing outbreak by visiting the Bridgend Foodbank website or checking their social media pages.