Covid-19 update from Bridgend County Borough
Posted on: Friday 20 March 2020
As the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic continues, Bridgend County Borough Council is continuing to focus its resources on providing essential services and protecting vulnerable residents. The following information provides a summary of latest developments, with the most recent additions at the top:
Childcare for key workers
This is available from Monday 23 March for children of key workers in the NHS, emergency services, prison service and social care workers. The scheme may be expanded further once the council has been able to establish the level of demand and available staffing. It will be available for children aged 0 – 16 at five fully-accessible local schools, with free transport provided for children living outside of the natural catchment areas.
Free school meals
From Monday 23 March, children who are entitled to free school meals will be able to collect a take-away packed lunch from 23 local schools – Brackla, Betws, Ffaldau, Brynmenyn, Cefn Glas, Caerau, Litchard, Corneli, Pencoed, Nantymoel, West Park, Ogmore Vale, Penyfai, St Marys & St Patricks and Tynyrheol primaries, Archbishop McGrath, Coleg Cymunedol y Dderwen, Bryntirion, Brynteg, Cynffig, YGG Llangynwyd, Brynteg Lower comprehensives, and Ysgol Bryn Castell Special School.
Residents who pay over 10 months can extend their instalments over 12 months instead, or the April and May instalments can be deferred to February and March in 2021. Residents who pay over 12 instalments already can also make their payments a few months later and increase the instalment amount to cover the full year’s charge.
Leisure facilities and swimming pools
In line with national advice, leisure facilities and swimming pools have now closed. The council’s leisure partner, Halo, are monitoring the situation closely and are considering alternative ways for people to remain active. This covers the Bridgend, Garw and Ogmore life centres, Maesteg Sports Centre, and Maesteg, Pencoed, Pyle and Ynysawdre swimming pools.
The council is continuing to respond to reported street lighting faults. As there is an unavoidable delay in carrying out repairs, they are being prioritised and carried out depending on urgency.
Business rate relief
Welsh Government has announced that a business rate relief scheme is being introduced. We are currently waiting to receive further details of how this will be administrated, and will make further announcements as soon as it is available.
Contacting the council
The Customer Service Centre at the Civic Offices in Angel Street, Bridgend is currently open. To limit risk, residents are being urged not to visit in person, but to use the online My Account and Oggie webchat facilities, or to email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01656 643643.
All libraries in the county borough will close at 5pm on Friday 20 March due to pressures on staffing and to limit the risk of exposure. The Books On Wheels home delivery service for vulnerable people will continue for the time being.
Schools in Bridgend County Borough will be closed from Friday 20 March. A range of technology such as Google Classroom, Hwb and more will be used to deliver lessons, and plans are being made to support children with additional learning needs.
Visits to council-run care homes and childrens’ homes have been temporarily suspended, and contact with family and friends is being carried out via telephone, video link and social media. Guidance has been issued to independent care homes to support a consistent approach, while for domiciliary care, risk assessments are being carried out to protect vulnerable residents.
Centres and buildings used for day services will close by Friday 20 March, and people are being offered alternative support based on their personal circumstances and needs.
The council’s B-Leaf and Wood-B work-based facilities for adults with disabilities are temporarily closed, and trainees are being offered appropriate alternative activities.
Recycling and waste
Recycling and waste collections are currently going ahead as normal currently, and community recycling centres remain open. The council is working closely alongside its waste partner, Kier.
Sports pitches and pavilions
All football, rugby and cricket matches have been postponed, as have regular Park Run activities.
Bridgend Register Office
Bridgend Register Office is currently open. Temporary restrictions are in place for attendees at ceremonies, and non-essential appointments are being postponed and rearranged.
Coychurch Crematorium and cemeteries
All council-run cemeteries are currently open. Coychurch Crematorium is open, and temporary arrangements are under development to reduce the risk of exposure for staff and mourners.
Domestic violence support offered by the Calan DVS Assia Suite at the civic offices is focusing mainly on telephone contact, with personal appointments taking place where it is safe to do so. Refuge accommodation is continuing, as is on-call support.
Bridgend Bus Station
Bridgend Bus Station will close at 6pm instead of 8pm. Buses using the station can still be accessed by passengers.
Venues and open spaces
The Grand Pavilion in Porthcawl is closed. Bryngarw Country Park is currently open.
For general enquiries, please contact Bridgend County Borough Council's customer contact centre:
09:00 to 17:00 Monday to Thursday;
09:00 to 16:30 Friday.