Author Archives: GBPC Admin

Offer of Support from the British Red Cross – COVID 19

The British Red Cross is ready to help in Essex during this local lockdown and I am reaching out to offer our support and resources during this time. As an emergency response organisation, we have developed a range of support services and resources, to help and support our local communities, who are facing increasingly challenging times during the COVID 19 pandemic.

Here you will find a useful guide to the support we can provide. Please pass on the attached document any colleagues or partners who may want to talk to us about how we can work together to help those most vulnerable and likely to be worst affected.

Since the outbreak began, our staff and volunteers across the UK have carried out more than a quarter of a million acts of kindness, from delivering food and medicine, to taking people home from hospital, to providing welfare checks and psychosocial support. 

The support and resources we are able to offer are:

Support Line

Our National Covid-19 Support Line – 0808 196 3651 – 10am – 6pm daily (see attached flyer) has helped more than 10,000 callers since April and our volunteers are currently receiving around 600 calls per week nationwide. Our free and confidential support line can:

  • Help with practical information and advice
  • Provide emotional support
  • Connect people with support in their area
  • Organise food and prescription deliveries to vulnerable households

Please share this flyer or just the number with anyone you feel could be helped by the support line. If we identify any further support needs while speaking with callers, these will be referred back to the British Red Cross Covid-19 Tactical Cell – a team of staff and volunteers who will contact people to give further support or refer on to another agency that is better placed to help.

Hardship Fund

We have a hardship fund and cash assistance programme to support people without access to money. This can provide people with a cash grant of £120 per month for 3 months, up to a maximum of 3 persons per household. It is a very limited intervention designed to help those most financially impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. For a list of the qualifying criteria, please see the Hardship Fund Website.

Cash Transfer programmes require a level of bureaucracy which can be time-consuming and labour intensive for Local Authorities to meet. In order to be as useful as possible, we have simplified the process and are taking organisations on as referral partners, thereby taking most of the bureaucracy on ourselves. We would like to bring local partnerson board as a referral partner and the Hardship Fund team are standing by to fast-track the process for you – please email [email protected] for more information or to begin the process.


We have many volunteers in the Essex area who are ready, willing and able to support vulnerable or isolated people in the area. Some are DBS checked, others are not. The non-DBS checked volunteers can help with:

  • Food sorting and delivery to vulnerable households
  • Telephone ‘check-in and chats’ with lonely and isolated people
  • Leaflet drops in partnership with Essex County Council and our emergency response partners

The DBS checked volunteers can help with everything listed above and:

  • Prescription delivery to vulnerable households
  • Patient transport services
  • Welfare checks

If you have a request which falls outside the listed activities or if you are otherwise unsure whether we can support you, please get in touch by emailing [email protected] .

Accessing British Red Cross Support

We hope that these additional services help to support the most vulnerable and those in the most need. If you are interested in accessing any of these services, or you have another request for support that you’d like to run by us, you can do so by completing this digital form and providing a brief overview of your need.

Our Covid-19 tactical cell will then be in touch to either gather further information, accept your request or forward it to another voluntary agency who are better placed to help.

We look forward to working with you in these challenging times.

All the best, Louise Palk.

Louise Palk

Director for South East, Independent Living & Crisis Response

* British Red Cross | 78-80 Walton Road| Woking | GU21 5DW

Tesco Bags of Help

Tesco Bags of Help scheme has made £2m of support available to local projects focused on children and young people across the UK throughout October – December.To help raise awareness, there are ten £100 prizes to be won in our Twitter competition.

See Tesco Bags of Help flyer – control/click on ‘find out more’ at the bottom of the flyer

Essex Residents – Summary of Tier 2 Rules

This information was updated on 15 October at 12:30 BST.

Essex County

From Saturday 17 October, your area is under local restrictions, in the Tier 2 (high alert) category for England. Your local authority website has full details of the restrictions which apply to you.

 Meeting friends and family

  • You must not meet people you don’t live with in any indoor setting – whether at home or, for example, a pub or restaurant – unless they are part of your support or childcare bubble.
  • You may continue to mix with people outdoors (including in a garden or a park) but you must not meet in a group more than six, and you must follow social distancing rules.
  • Meeting in larger groups is against the law, and you can be fined up to £6,400.

 Going to work

You should work at home if possible. If you cannot do this, you can return to your workplace but your employer must make arrangements for you to work safely.

 Schools and nurseries

Schools and nurseries remain open. In schools and colleges that teach Year 7 and above, face coverings should be worn by adults and pupils when moving around the premises, but not usually in a classroom.

 Leisure time

  • Pubs, bars and restaurants are restricted to table service only and must close at 22:00 BST.
  • Customers should not mix indoors with anyone from outside their own household or support bubble. Outdoors, you can meet in groups of up to six people.
  • At least one member of any group should give their contact details to the venue or check in using the NHS Covid app.
  • Face coverings must be worn, except when seated to eat or drink.


You must wear a face covering in shops, supermarkets and shopping centres.


  • If you need to travel, you should aim to reduce the number of journeys you make where possible and you are encouraged to walk or cycle, rather than use public transport.
  • You should avoid travelling in a car with someone outside your household or support bubble unless you can practise social distancing.
  • You can stay at hotels or guest accommodation, inside or outside your area, but only with people in your household or support bubble.
  • Travel from your area to Wales will not be allowed from 18:00 BST on Friday 16 October, except for a limited set of reasons such as going to school or work.
  • Weddings, civil partnership ceremonies and wedding receptions are restricted to 15 people (the reception must be a sit-down meal).
  • Up to 30 people can attend a funeral. Wakes and other related events are restricted to 15 people.
  • You should not visit a care home except in exceptional circumstances, for example to visit an individual who is at the end of their life.

Reasons Behind Moving to Tier 2

From Councillor John Spence, Cabinet Member for Health & Adult Social Care:

Dear Colleagues,

I know there have been comments on social media and elsewhere suggesting that the decision to request the move to tier two was driven by potential extra government funding.  I strongly refute this, and have enclosed below a link to a video I have made on the subject, both for your information, and to pass on as you see fit.

In addition, below is a link to messaging and data we put out on social media yesterday, reiterating the thinking behind the decision.  Again, please do pass on as you deem appropriate.

Many thanks,


Cllr John Spence CBE

Cabinet Member for Health & Adult Social Care

Essex County Council, County Hall, Chelmsford

A120 Horsely Cross Roundabout to Parkeston Roundabout: resurfacing

A120 Horsley Cross Roundabout to Cansey Lane, in both directions: resurfacing

A120 Ramsey Roundabout to Parkeston Roundabout, in both directions: resurfacing

I write to inform you that we’ll be carrying out essential resurfacing works at the above locations, in both directions. As part of these works we’ll also be renewing road markings, road studs and replacing damaged signs.

We plan to complete this work over eleven weeks in total starting from Monday 26 October to Wednesday 17 December. We will return after the Christmas period between Monday 4 January to Friday 23 January, working weeknights only between 8pm to 6am, subject to weather conditions.

These works have been split into two phases which are detailed below. During this work we will stagger our westbound and eastbound closures so that traffic is only diverted in one direction at a time. We have liaised closely with the Local Highway Authority to agree the most suitable diversion routes for these works.

Phase 1: A120 Horsley Cross Roundabout to Cansey Lane, in both directions

  • Westbound closures will be in place between the above locations on Monday 26 October, Friday 30 October, Monday 2 November and Thursday 5 November to Monday 9 November.
  • Eastbound closures will be in place between the above locations from Tuesday 27 October to Thursday 29 October, Tuesday 3 November to Wednesday 4 November and on Tuesday 10 November.

Diversion routes

  • Traffic wanting to travel westbound on the A120 from Harwich will be diverted from Ramsey Roundabout via the B1352, B1414 to Thorpe-le-Soken, B1033, A133 to re-join the A120 via the A133 link at Hare Green.
  • Traffic wanting to travel eastbound on the A120 will be diverted off the A120 at Horsley Cross Roundabout to follow the B1035 to Manningtree, B1352 to re-join the A120 at Ramsey Roundabout.

Phase 2: A120 Ramsey Roundabout to Parkeston Roundabout, in both directions

  • Westbound closures will be in place between the above locations from Monday 30 November to Friday 4 December, Tuesday 8 December to Wednesday 9 December.
  • Eastbound closures will be in place between the above locations from Monday 23 November to Thursday 26 November, Monday 7 December, Thursday 10 December to Friday 11 December.
  • Westbound and Eastbound closures will also be in place from Monday 14 December to Wednesday 17 December and Monday 4 January to Wednesday 20 January between the above locations. 

Diversion route

  • Traffic will be diverted off the A120 at Parkeston Roundabout via Parkeston Road and the B1352 before re-joining the A120 at Ramsey Roundabout. This diversion route will be in place for traffic travelling in both directions.


Please be assured all our sites have strict safeguarding measures to prevent the spread of COVID19 and none of our sites are open to the public. We will be carrying out all works following safety guidelines set by the Government.

Find out more

To stay informed about all the latest major roadworks happening near you, visit to register for the latest alerts. If you have any enquiries please contact the Highways England Customer Contact Centre on 0300 123 5000, or by e-mail to [email protected].

Yours faithfully,

Leanne Morphew Senior Adminstrator, Scheme Delivery Team Highways England | Crown House | Crown Street | Ipswich | IP1 3HS

Digital Demand Responsive Transport (D-DRT) survey

We write regarding a Digital Demand Responsive Transport (D-DRT) survey that launches today, that we would welcome your support with securing as many residents as possible to complete.

The survey seeks to gather resident views on D-DRT to inform a potential future strategy around this and how it may lead to more sustainable travel and reduced car-use in Essex.  The survey is one of the inputs alongside other primary and secondary research into the field of D-DRT, conducted as part of a project with Anglia Ruskin University.

Please share this survey link and ask residents to complete it:

The survey closes on Sunday 1 November at midnight.
Thank you for your support with this and if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Kind regards,
James Hopkins | Business Development Manager
Integrated Passenger Transport Unit

Essex County Council