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Coronavirus - latest information

The information available about Coronavirus is fast changing. Government advice seems to be being released on a daily basis. When we receive new updates we will endeavour to reflect those changes in these pages as quickly as possible.

** UPDATE ** Tuesday 5th January 2021 **

Dear All,

Well Happy New Lockdown!!

I hope you have been able to enjoy Christmas and I pray God’s abundant blessings on our church fellowships this new year!

Thank you for all the lovely Christmas cards and messages that we received - it is very much appreciated.

Wales are well into their lockdown and Scotland and England have begun Lockdown 3 this week – below are the update’s and links for churches.

In England and Wales church buildings can still open for worship but no mingling with others, just worship. In Scotland they have to close but Ministers can still broadcast.

If I can help with any specific questions do please get in touch and I will do my best to support you.

God bless you,

Yvonne Campbell

Scotland
https://www.gov.scot/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/

England
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/national-lockdown-stay-at-home

Wales
https://gov.wales/guidance-reopening-places-worship-coronavirus-html


On the right you will find a download about reopening churches and also the booklet that we have written to help churches think about some of the steps needed to reopening in general.

We also have links to the Safer Places of Worship, Churches Together in England and Government websites.

** UPDATE ** Monday 7th December 2020 **

Singing

As you know, we have been working closely with a number of Government departments, including Public Health England and the Deputy Chief Medical Officer over recent weeks to establish what can be done to update our advice on singing to reflect the developing evidence base.

In the revised guidance we are advising that singing or can take place safely where it is managed consistent with the advice for the Performing Arts developed by Public Health England & the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport. This applies to both professional and amateur choirs, and informal carol services. Performers and worshippers will of course need to observe the gathering limits consistent with the Local Restriction Tier in place for their areas.

In brief:
Indoor singing: During a performance or service, the audience or congregation should not participate in any activity that can create aerosols, including singing, shouting and chanting. This follows the advice generally for the Performing Arts.

Outdoor singing: During a performance or service, the audience or congregation may join in with singing and should follow relevant guidance. This includes audience or congregation members following social distancing of 2m, preferably sitting down. Event organisers should ensure this is maintained at all times. The maximum number of people present should take into account the area of the outdoor space and the requirement to maintain social distancing of 2m. Particular attention should be paid to how participants can arrive and leave the site safely whilst maintaining social distancing.

But please do remember, COVID-19 spreads from person to person through small droplets, aerosols and through direct contact. Singing, shouting and physical activity increases the risk of transmission through small droplets and aerosols. If communal singing does take place, steps should be taken to reduce the risk of transmission. Steps that will need to be taken are:

•  communal singing should be outdoors only
•  there should be 2 metres between attendees
•  any surrounding surfaces that are touched should be regularly cleaned
•  there must be very clear rules about non-attendance of those who are symptomatic, those who are isolating as close contacts of a case or who has been advised to do so by NHS Test and Trace and those quarantining
•  all relevant rules on gatherings are to be followed
•  consideration should be given to the vulnerability of some individuals
•  attendees should be advised to walk or cycle to the event and avoid public transport or sharing a car with anyone outside their household in line with safer travel advice.

The link with the updated information is on the right hand side at the top.