covid 19 coronavirus

In It Together: How Wokingham Borough is battling Covid-19 as a community

covid 19 coronavirus

The number of Covid-19 cases in our borough is increasing, as it is just about everywhere in the country.

In response to this increase, Wokingham Borough Council is launching our ‘In It Together’ campaign to help everybody keep to the Covid-19 rules and slow the spread of infection. The campaign will focus on how the borough council and its partners are working together to reduce the impact of Covid-19 and how everybody can play a part in this.

Leader of Wokingham Borough Council John Halsall said: “Wokingham Borough Council has been proactive to protect its residents throughout the crisis and our communities and schools have responded magnificently to the challenge Covid-19 has brought. However, we face a threat that is not going away, in fact, it is increasing in our borough as it is elsewhere and so we will re-double our efforts and are calling on all residents to do the same: we are all in this together.”

Since the pandemic began, Wokingham Borough Council has:

  • Sourced its own PPE supplies when the national supply was failing
  • Published the most accurate and comprehensive data on outbreaks available every week
  • Bought an emergency supply of testing kits for use in emergency circumstances if necessary
  • Launched a self-isolation payment scheme to help those eligible people who cannot earn money when told to isolate
  • Worked closely with schools to help them re-open and remain open as safely as possible
  • Stepped up to deliver local contact tracing to support the NHS Test and Trace service (the first authority in Berkshire to volunteer to do so)
  • Worked with businesses to help them operate safely (and acted when they did not follow rules)

As the number of cases rises again, the borough council is working with partners in the voluntary sector to keep the Wokingham Borough Community Response up and running to help those most vulnerable. The council is also writing to those people who were shielded in the spring in order to make sure they have the latest guidance.

The borough council has worked hard with local partners to ensure there are testing sites locally available whenever possible, with units coming to at Cantley Park in Wokingham and Prospect Park in Reading. Tests can be booked via the national website

A mobile testing unit will be located at Cantley Park on October 22 and November 13, 21 and 27.  Attendance at the site will be via appointment/booking only and tests can be booked via the national website

Testing site availability/booking slots are allocated the day before for morning appointments or in the morning for same day afternoon appointments. If appointments are available at local testing sites they will show up when booking a Covid test via the website.  If no local appointments are available you may be able to book a home testing kit, or find a booking at a nearby regional testing unit (Newbury and Slough).

Cllr Halsall added: “If we all can change our behaviour and observe the rules as a matter of course we may avoid the worst. I am asking everyone to be an evangelist for these rules. In essence the virus is spread through social contact, the more you minimise social contact the less the virus will spread.

“The effort to control Covid-19 and support the vulnerable in the borough has been phenomenal. But the numbers are going up and there are still some people who are not following the rules – and I have to say that they are putting others at greater risk. We must all stick together in this – keep to the social distancing rules and, if you have to isolate, please do so.”

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covid safety bonfire night

Covid safety for Bonfire Night

Bonfire Night Celebrations during Covid

The Council and the Public Protection Partnership (PPP) would like to ask residents if they are holding their own bonfire night celebrations during the period around bonfire night to please:  

  • Be observant of Covid restrictions – remember the ‘Rule of 6’, social distancing and ‘Hands – Face – Space’ 
  • Remember that bonfires and fireworks may cause a nuisance to your neighbours and we encourage you, out of courtesy, to discuss your plans 
  • Bonfires burning damp materials will cause excess smoke 
  • Make sure you are not burning pollutants such as plastics
  • There is a risk that bonfires may get out of control and put excess pressure on emergency services – follow guidance from Royal Berkshire Fire & Rescue service regarding taking precautions
  • Multiple fireworks, going off over a longer period of time, may frighten and stress local pets and animals. Look out for fireworks labelled ‘low noise/silent’. Please talk to neighbours with pets to let them know your plans
  • If you’ve a pet who gets distressed during the firework ‘season’ see link here from PPP Animal Warden team
  • Fireworks should not be let off in public places such as a park or your street
  • If you are setting off fireworks in your garden make sure your garden is big enough for the type of firework and that you follow the safety instructions and the firework code.

If you are unsure what it legally allowed, in general terms, on Bonfire Night, see link here from Thames Valley Police. 

Firework safety guidelines see here

Current guidelines on gatherings under COVID restrictions see link here

The Public Protection Partnership (PPP) is a shared service delivering Environmental Health, Licensing and Trading Standards to over 450,000 people and 10,000 businesses on behalf of three authorities (Partners), Bracknell Forest Council, West Berkshire Council and Wokingham Borough Council.

These services encompass a wide range of areas of responsibility from environmental protection to fair trading, food safety to animal health, housing standards to taxi licensing, and more.




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