Latest COVID-19 update from RMBC….

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Wednesday 23rd December 2020

Residents Bulletin

Due to the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19), we are providing regular email updates to let you know about the latest information we have on local and national measures to contain the virus, any changes to local services and support that’s available.

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Reduce the Risk - Covid alert level: very high

Today the government confirmed that Rotherham is remaining in Tier 3 at the moment, which reflects that we are still an area of Very High Risk. The infection rate in the borough has risen a little again this week.

Over the holiday period, everyone is being asked to:

  • Stay local and avoid travel as much as you can
  • Don’t mix with other households in your home or garden, except on Christmas Day
  • On Christmas Day only, the national rules allow up to three households to meet indoors. Please, please do not exceed the limits in place – they are there for the safety of you and your family. We all know that the virus is not going to take the day off. We would advise that if you are meeting someone else on Christmas Day, you must maintain social distancing, try not to spend too long together indoors, and if you can then meet outdoors instead.
  • Continue to follow the key health advice of washing your hands often, wearing face coverings when required – including in your home if you are in a group of people for a prolonged period – and staying 2 metres apart
  • If you have any symptoms at all, or any reason to be concerned, always get tested.

You can find out more about tier 3 restrictions in place on the Government website. There are also some useful frequently asked questions about the current restrictions on the Rotherham Council website.

Some areas of the UK, including London and many parts of the south-east have been placed under stricter, Tier 4 restrictions because infection rates there have increased very rapidly over the last couple of weeks. No one should now be leaving a Tier 4 to travel to another part of the country. For anyone who has recently arrived from a Tier 4 area, we strongly recommend they avoid contact with anybody from other households.

We know these new restrictions are putting pressure on families who have already sacrificed so much, but it is necessary for us to keep safe, prevent people from falling ill and placing even greater strain to our hospital and NHS services

Current infection rate and hospital status

The 7-day Covid-19 infection rate for Rotherham (up to 17th Dec) was 235.1 cases per 100,000 population, which is an increase from the previous 7 days.

Over the same period, the infection rate for people aged 60 years and over was 237.4 cases per 100,000 population, which is again up when compared to the week before.

As of yesterday morning, there were 121 inpatients in Rotherham Hospital who have tested positive for Covid-19 – of whom 5 were in critical care.

35 Covid-related deaths were registered in Rotherham in the last week alone.

Getting tested

It’s really important that you book an appointment for a Covid-19 test straight away if you are displaying any of the following symptoms, even if they are mild:

  • 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 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you’ve noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal

There is good availability of tests at the four testing sites in Rotherham, which will be open throughout the Christmas and New Year period, including Christmas Day. Click here to book a test.

Looking out for your safety

Rotherham Council and South Yorkshire Police will be stepping up patrols throughout the borough over Christmas and the New Year to ensure people and businesses are complying with the restrictions.

We are urging people to follow the guidance and be cautious before entering busy areas such as shopping centres for the traditional Boxing Day and New Year sales.

Test and trace data shows that shops and other indoor venues can be a hotspot for Covid-19 transmission, so always remember the hands, space, face rule when out and about.

Christmas opening hours and emergency cover

Christmas opening times

Information about opening hours and emergency arrangements for Rotherham Council over the Christmas and New Year holiday are available now on the Council’s website.

From 8pm on Thursday 24 December 2020Rotherham Council essential services will be taking emergency telephone calls only.

Emergency services are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

To report an emergency to the Council, call:

If you are in a crisis as a result of Covid-19 and require immediate help, please telephone 01709 807319. Any other emergency: 01709 382121

If you feel that a child or young person is in immediate danger, please phone 999.

Click here to view the full list of Rotherham Council service details and other help and support arrangements over the holiday.

To report non-emergency issues at any time go to

Normal services will resume at 8am on Monday 4 January 2020.

Harthill School

And finally…

It’s been a tough year for everyone, but we can always rely on the children and young people of Rotherham to lift our spirits.

We asked youngsters from Harthill Primary School to record a special message about staying safe this Christmas. You can view their special message on our Facebook page. They may be young – but they know the rules!

Meanwhile, around 500 children from schools across the borough have teamed up virtually to perform two classic Christmas songs for you to enjoy.

Thank you to Rotherham Schools Imporvement Service, Rotherham Music and Miss Jackson for pulling this project together.

You can enjoy their performance on the Rotherham Music YouTube Channel – but be warned, it may make you cry!

Please watch and share to give everyone a much-needed lift this Christmas.

Rotherham School Choir