COVID-19 - our services
Up-to-date information about council services
A - Z of council services affected and you can also find out the latest with council services and how you can book, pay and apply online.
With a lot of people stuck at home for the foreseeable future, and maybe struggling with ideas of things to do, stay active or just keep their mental health in a positive place, we've compiled a list of resources across a wide range of subjects to try and provide something of interest for everyone.
Please regularly Council meetings calendar for updates on public meetings as some meetings are cancelled, whist others will be taking place online for the public to view. Where meetings are taking place online, you will see details on the agenda about how you can submit questions or written statements for the meeting.
If you have any questions about meetings taking place, please contact Democratic Services on email@example.com.
The decision has been made to temporarily close City Hall until such a time when it is safe and financially viable to reopen. This means all performances that were scheduled to take place will now no longer take place. Staff will arrange full refunds for all people who have booked tickets.
COVID-19 Community Pack
We have created an updated Community Pack of information to help support communities during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic:
(last updated 18 November)
Within it you'll find a list of key contacts, resources and information in one place, which we hope you can share with your community to support each other as much as possible during this time.
COVID-19 Volunteer Pack
Wiltshire Council has created an information pack for volunteer groups to help them support their communities during the ongoing COVID-19 situation.
Wiltshire has already seen a large number of community groups mobilise up and down the county to support their fellow residents. The pack brings together a lot of their best practise in setting up an effective response. The(last updated 13 May) includes top tips on setting up a volunteer group, advice on supporting those in self-isolation, and a range of template forms and useful signposting to other resources.
Safeguarding guidance for volunteer groups
This is to support groups in their work to protect vulnerable people from potentially unscrupulous people and to support volunteers to feel confident the work they are doing is safe and appropriate for all.
Community Groups: prescription collection and delivery process
Voluntary and community groups offer a vital support service for residents who are unable to collect prescriptions. Some pharmacies are able to deliver directly to individuals, however, picking up personal and potentially lifesaving medication comes with a number of safeguarding considerations. It requires a robust system to ensure safe delivery of the correct prescription to each recipient. In thiswe set out our recommended process for working successfully with your local pharmacy to collect and deliver prescriptions
PPE volunteer guidance
We have produced ato provide guidance for volunteers working in our communities during the COVID 19 pandemic. It aims to help you take the appropriate precautions and protect both yourself and the people in our community from the spread of COVID 19.
Community Groups Directory
The communities of Wiltshire have risen to the challenge of COVID-19 to make sure people are supported through this very difficult time. The council has collated all the community groups we have identified so far in our, which also contains a link to details on local food banks. This directory is updated regularly so please ensure you are using the most recent one. The date it was last updated can be found on the front cover.
In the time available we have only been able to collate this directory and therefore this is not an endorsement of the groups listed but it is for you to decide what use you will make of the offers of support at this time.
If anyone uses a community group and has concerns about the response/practice please inform us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org giving the clear reasons for your concern. The council wants to ensure that everybody can access the support they need. If you make contact with a group and they cannot help or you do not get a response within the required time-frame, then please do not hesitate to contact the council by emailing email@example.com and we will ensure you get the support you need.
- Wiltshire Community Foundation: Covid-19 Funding & Support offers funding opportunities to voluntary and charitable groups.
Community Engagement Managers (CEMs)
Our CEMs are here to support your local group. They can help you coordinate, make links with other groups and organisations and be a constant source of advice and guidance. Their contact details and the community areas they cover can be found on the Area boards page.
Supermarket/small food provider arrangements in light of COVID-19
Many local supermarkets and small food providers have changed their operating arrangements to support the elderly and vulnerable in our communities, and introduced initiatives to support volunteers. The latest information we have can be found below. This information below is subject to change and you are encouraged to contact your local supermarket/food provider for more information.
At this difficult time, food banks are in need of more volunteers and donations. If you are able to help in any way please get in touch with your local food bank. Food banks are there to support vulnerable people in a crisis, which is usually subject to a referral from a trusted source, such as a social worker.
- (details subject to change)
A number of befriending organisations in Wiltshire are providing support to people who perhaps feel a little lonely or isolated at this difficult time.
Take a look out ourfor a list of the organisations and the type of support they provide.
Any council tenant with a gas safety check scheduled will go ahead as planned, as it is a legal requirement that we remain gas compliant as a landlord. All engineers will wear the appropriate personal protection equipment (PPE) and will stay two metres away from residents at all times, in line with social distancing measures. However, if you are self-isolating due to COVID-19 symptoms, or if you have underlying health conditions, or you would like to postpone your appointment, please call contractor PH Jones on 01722 413344 to reschedule your visit.
Resident engagement events and trips
All planned events and trips are postponed until further notice.
As a precaution, our drop in service has been temporarily suspended until further notice.
We have taken this decision to minimise the risk to clients, staff and visitors, particularly those with pre-existing health conditions and those aged over 70.
For the time being, we will be operating a telephone and email service to respond to advice enquiries. Extra advisers are being deployed to operate the telephone helpline during this time. Contact details for the temporary service are as follows:
- West: 01225 718005, Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
- North: 01249 706666, Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
- South: 01722 434233, Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
You can also contact the service on firstname.lastname@example.org
Leisure and sports facilities are closed.
See more details on COVID-19 reopening.
If you have any queries or enquiries, please contact the centre directly, via email, through Facebook or by phone. All contact details are on our webpage.
For information about Places Leisure centres please visit: Places Leisure.
We are pleased to be able to offer an order and collect service, with bookable computers at a number of libraries across the county.
Find out about the library services available during COVID-19 and library opening hours at Libraries.
Some Wiltshire Council-run street markets selling essential items are open.
Please adhere to all measures in place and take notice of the on-site signage, including staying at least two metres apart from each other and our stallholders.
View more on Street markets.
Following the latest government guidance, you can only leave home to exercise once a day. You can meet with one person from outside your household, while keeping two metres apart at all times.
When enjoying yourselves outdoors remember to stay safe and alert:
- take hygiene precautions when you are outside
- wash your hands as soon as you are back indoors
- keep at least two metres apart from anyone outside your household at all times
- take hand sanitiser with you when you set off in case there are no handwashing facilities
- Wiltshire countryside update
- Rights of way
We are continuing to process planning applications to help keep the local economy moving, although it is possible that officers may be re-allocated to COVID-19 support work at short notice. All Planning Officers are now working from home, so please communicate with them via e-mail.
We have now stopped site visits, so we cannot currently put up site notices. Wherever possible, we are now relying on postal neighbour notifications to comply with the legislation, and third parties can continue to view details of applications on our website. However, in certain circumstances, such as alterations to listed buildings; major developments; and prior approvals, site notices are still a legal requirement. In these cases, we will seek to send them directly to the applicant and request that they are displayed. We will not be arranging any face-to-face meetings until further notice.
When submitting applications, please include photographs of the site and its surroundings. For example, if it is a rear extension, photographs showing the rear and its relationship to neighbouring properties will help the process, as we may be able to deal with some applications via assessment of the plans, photographs and online imagery. Please also ensure you do not send hard copies of applications to council offices as there may be a delay in processing these.
We have had a high percentage of applications dealt with under delegated powers for a long time, and this will continue. At present we are currently reviewing the position regarding the holding of planning committees, and note that the government has included proposals in the Coronavirus Act for handling committees, but these require the issuing of Regulations by the Secretary of State that have yet to be published. We will advise you if this impacts on your applications.
As you may be aware, the Planning Inspectorate is also affected, and is publishing updates about the impact on its service.
We have been asked about the likelihood of the government automatically extending the deadline for implementing extant permissions. This is not something that is within the control of the council and would require the government to change the planning legislation. As Parliament is now in recess, it would appear unlikely that there will be any changes on this aspect in the foreseeable future.
The service may be hit by further restrictions imposed by the government, or by sickness, and we thank you for your continued support and understanding at this time.
Local Land Charges
The Local Land Charges team will continue to operate a service as close to normal as possible, while following all the latest guidance. Many officers will now be working from home, so please communicate via e-mail on email@example.com. Please remember that you can submit an LLC1 (Official Certificate of Search) for £30 and receive the refined results via email. Please also be understanding about delays and changes to timescales and limit queries regarding turnaround times.
Weddings and civil partnerships
Weddings can go ahead only in specific circumstances, such as end of life.
Funerals can go ahead with restrictions on numbers of attendees - 30 people can attend funeral ceremonies, and 15 people can attend linked commemorative events.
For more information please call 0300 003 4570 or visit the registration webpages.
Can I now register the birth of my child and notices of marriage and civil partnerships?
The Registration Service has recommenced appointments for the registration of births. We have re-opened our appointment telephone line 0300 003 4569 to enable all new parents to make appointments for birth registrations which have occurred within our local authority boundaries.
A small number of babies born during the lockdown period from 24 March to 01 June 2020 inclusive have still to be registered. We would urge parents who have not yet made an appointment to contact the above number as soon as possible to make an appointment booking to complete the process.
We are currently only offering telephone death registration appointments. You must book your appointment by telephoning 0300 003 4569. The customer services officer will book you an appointment slot and you will need to be available for one hour from the start time of that appointment for the Registrar to contact you to conduct the registration. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause but these measures are in place to protect both our customers and staff.
How much will it cost?
The service is free of charge. To deal with the deceased's estate, you may need to purchase death certificates which are certified copies of the register entry. Currently due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are restricting purchase to one certificate per registration. Further copies can be purchased once the pandemic is over. There is an £11 fee for each certificate issued. We can only process card payments so please have a card available to pay for your certificate at the time of registration.
We have published some guidance for those attending funeral services during this time:
Information relating to schools can be found on our dedicated page.
We usually return to empty any missed containers the following day so please leave your bins our, although in some instances it is taking a little longer for us to reach you. We apologise for the inconvenience this may cause, but please continue to leave your containers out and we will return as soon as we can. We continue to operate on Saturdays to empty bins on rounds not completed as scheduled on Fridays.
Throughout lockdown we have managed to maintain all waste and recycling collection services, including general waste, mixed dry recycling, chargeable garden waste, and bulky household waste collections.
If you suspect you have COVID-19, put waste tissues into a plastic bag and tie it when full. You can also put disposable cloths or wipes, used to clean hard surfaces such as kitchen worktops and bathrooms, in this bag. Once the bag is full, double bag it in a second bin bag and tie it up. Store the bags for 72 hours (three days) and then please place them in your normal wheeled bin. If you don't receive a wheeled bin collection, please make sure a council-issued bag label is placed on the outside of the double-bagged waste.
Please see the latest Defra guidance on cleaning your home and disposing of waste.
Our waste collection staff are working as three-person crews, and have been closely following the guidance from government, Public Health England, the NHS and the Waste Industry Safety and Health (WISH) Forum since the start of the pandemic. This guidance has been regularly reviewed and continues to state that good hygiene is the most important control in preventing the spread of COVID-19, combined with cleaning hard surfaces in vehicles regularly. he crews are encouraged to wash their hands regularly, not touch their eyes, nose or mouth and, where possible, ventilate vehicle cabs when travelling. If staff have symptoms (or if someone in their household has symptoms) they are told not to come in for their shift and to arrange to take a COVID-19 test and follow government procedures. The WISH guidance recognises that for large rural counties such as Wiltshire, it's not possible to restrict crew sizes without having a significant impact on waste and recycling collections. The crews also work in small bubbles wherever possible and follow social distancing guidelines at all times while at the depot. By strictly following this guidance and practice, the frontline waste and recycling collections have been able to continue to operate.
Household recycling centres
All of Wiltshire's household recycling centres (HRCs), are open for pre-booked visits only. You must book a visit before attending a HRC.
Waste and recycling collections
The Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre reopens its doors to the public on 5 January.
They have new opening hours and procedures to ensure the safety and comfort of customers and staff and all visits must now be pre-booked. Opening hours and how to book can be found on Wiltshire and Swindon History Centre