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Tip visits top 2,000, and service to help people into education and jobs supports 200 since coronavirus outbreak

Published: Monday, 18th May 2020

Visitors to the city’s two tips have topped 2,000, in the first five days since opening under restricted conditions.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council announced that the household waste and recycling centres in Hanford and in Federation Road, Burslem were opening again last Thursday (14 May), and have now welcomed 2,006 cars onsite for residents to unload their waste. During a peak at the weekend, when visitors could go to both sites, 1,072 cars were accommodated at the facilities.

Council leader Abi Brown said: “Visitors to the tips have been really patient and supportive of the efforts being made to open the sites, and we are very grateful for that. However, our message remains clear, only plan a visit to the tip if it is urgent and essential. There are long waits when you visit, of up to two hours. We have a number of restrictions in place for the safety of visitors and staff, and these must be adhered to. I’m very pleased to say that visitors have followed the instructions really well, and are unloading responsibly and quickly – this is really important if we are to reduce the length of time people are queuing.

“Staff from our parking services and office-based workers at the tips worked over the weekend to support the effort, wearing high-visibility jackets to greet people in the queues and guide visitors through what they need to do when on-site. Their efforts are hugely appreciated and have meant that we have been able to keep the sites operating smoothly in such high demand conditions.”

Residents are reminded that the Hanford site is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays as usual, and so if they are planning to visit the Federation Road, Burslem centre tomorrow (Tuesday), to be prepared for a considerable wait. Queue lengths, on average, are 1.5hours from the site entrance on Federation Road back to the traffic lights junction with Westport Road. If traffic is queuing on Westport Road past the adjacent entrance to St Nathaniel’s Academy, there is, on average, a two hour wait. Visitors are advised to factor in the closing time of the tip at 4pm and to set out in good time or else, unfortunately, they will be turned away. When the site closes, a thorough clean of facilities takes place to ensure it is ready the following day. For a full list of the restrictions in place at the tips, please visit: https://www.stoke.gov.uk/info/20002/rubbish_and_recycling/172/the_tip.

Meanwhile, the council is reminding residents that brown bin garden waste collections resume as usual from today (Monday), following normal collection days. Residents are advised to put their brown bins out on the same day as their blue bin for recycling. During a two-week sweep of brown bin collections which concluded on 8 May, council workers took 1,842 tonnes of waste from households across more than 3,000 city streets.

Environment teams are from today (Monday) also increasing grass cutting including highway and other verges, at housing estates, and in cemeteries. In line with safety guidance, and to manage the growth, grass cutting will only take place where it can be done using a sit on or sit in mower to reduce the length of grass, or through strimming. Some strimming will take place on smaller plots where a sit on/in vehicle cannot operate. Push mowers will not generally be used in this initial phase and weed killing will then follow.

Meanwhile, since lockdown measures came into force in March, the council’s Jobs, Enterprise and Training service (JET) has helped more than 200 residents. The service, which is based at Smithfield in the city centre, helps people who are unemployed get back into work. It also operates an employment job brokerage service, which provides recruitment support for local businesses.

The service has helped those people with CV construction, interview techniques, mock interviews and application form support, access to further careers advice as well as qualifications and job matching. JET is currently working with more than 50 local employers, all with various live jobs vacancies with immediate starts.

Councillor Brown said: “We know it’s an unsettling time for residents and hard to predict what the economy will be like in 12 months – but we are here to help. We are committed to continuing to supporting jobs and helping the city to grow, and supporting residents.”

Residents can contact the JET service via 01782 234288.

The UK’s chief medical officers have announced from today (Monday) that the coronavirus symptoms list has been updated. Residents are advised to not leave their homes if they have symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) or live with someone who does. The symptoms are:

  • A high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • A new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or three or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual).
  • A loss of, or change in, your normal sense of smell or taste.

If residents are self-isolating, they must:

  • Not leave their home for any reason. Any exercise should be taken at home, and residents can use their garden if they have one.
  • Not go out to buy food or collect medicine – order them by phone or online, or ask someone else to drop them off at your home
  • Not have visitors, such as friends and family, in your  home

Residents can find more information on self-isolation here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/what-to-do-if-you-or-someone-you-live-with-has-coronavirus-symptoms/

For more information and advice on coronavirus (Covid-19) please visit Public Health England:

https://publichealthmatters.blog.gov.uk/2020/01/23/wuhan-novel-coronavirus-what-you-need-to-know/ and the NHS: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/.

All residents are reminded about the critical importance of regular handwashing with soap and hot water for 20 seconds. The significance of this action cannot be underestimated.

For more information on digital services, visit www.stoke.gov.uk, download the MyStoke App, or follow the city council’s social media channels.