Second Coronavirus bulletin in Knightsbridge
Please take this Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic seriously.
Councillor Rachael Robathan, Leader of Westminster City Council, held a valuable conference call and online meeting with the Knightsbridge Neighbourhood Forum, the Knightsbridge Association and the other amenity societies and neighbourhood forums across the City of Westminster on Monday 30 March. Key points appear below and there's lots of additional information and help available on Westminster's website including about volunteers.
Please also check the Knightsbridge Neighbourhood Forum's Coronavirus COVID-19 webpage for further information.
*Always dial 999 in a medical emergency*
Check the latest NHS advice:
1. Westminster City Council's website
Westminster City Council is publishing detailed information on its website for residents, businesses and cultural institutions. There is also information for vulnerable residents and advice on how to get help or offer it.
2. 'Westminster Connects': digital bulletins, ways to receive or offer help to others and forthcoming letter from the Leader of the Council
Please sign up to frequent (daily?) digital updates about Westminster City Council's coronavirus response and lots of news here:
The Council will be posting a letter to ratepayers and others imminently in order to reach as many people as possible including those who are not 'online'.
The 'Westminster Connects' webpage should also be updated with useful information about local shops and deliveries.
3. Postal services
Don't feel unloved! 'Social distancing' rules mean that postal delivery services have been halved or more (because two people used to travel together from the depot for Knightsbridge deliveries). The Post Office is open and you might consider using their 'Signed for' or 'Special delivery' services if you want to be more certain of deliveries. All this could change quickly.
4. Street cleaning, rubbish and recycling
Our streets are as clean as they have ever been as Westminster's street cleaning and rubbish and recycling services continue to run normally.
However, you can help the Council to keep our streets clean by:
- Putting rubbish and recycling out the night before regular collections. Don't dump it early.
- Reporting any rubbish or recycling dumped out of hours (that you spot on your daily outing, if allowed!). It helps the street cleaning team if you report the street name and number (or building name). Simply reporting 'rubbish in Rutland Gate' makes it hard for them to find. We've found that a zero tolerance approach, backed by robust Council enforcement against repeat or problem offenders, works best.
- We recommend using the 'Fix My Street' app or website which lets you register, upload photos, add a comment (such as the street number where it's dumped) and lodge reports anonymously or with your name. Fix My Street:
- Remember that you can take some recycling to Westminster's micro-recycling centres in Relton Mews and Ennismore Gardens (in front of the Russian Orthodox Church) anytime. But please don't dump bags there.
- Please don't put out more rubbish than you need to. If you spend this time doing a spring 'clear out' you may overload local services. 'Flytippers' can receive substantial fines.
We must all recognise that Westminster may need to focus increasingly on providing 'critical services' as their contractors lose people to illness or self-isolation.
5. Beware scams and tricks
There are reports of scammers and fraudsters using this 'Lockdown' to trick people. Please also beware of using street-side ATMs/cashpoints because they may be fitted with a 'Lebanese Loop' which allows fraudsters to clone your credit or debit card. Sadly, it's a common problem in Knightsbridge. We suspect that some beggars siting near these machines may be watching them. Try using 'contactless' payment in supermarkets or getting cash from the Post Office. Lloyds Bank in Brompton Road has an ATM/cashpoint inside the branch and (currently) has a notice in its window saying it will be open between 10am and 2pm on Monday to Friday for essential banking. This may change.
6. Local shops
Please check the opening hours, including those for elderly people or others, of local shops are services. It seems that Boots, Lloyds, the Post Office, Sainsbury's and Waitrose are still open in Brompton Road or Raphael Street. Sometimes they shut early.
7. Maintain 'social distancing' of at least 2 metres
Whether you're walking, running or cycling it's important to maintain your social distancing of two metres or more. A new scientific paper suggests that seven or eight metres might be necessary if people sneeze nearby. Austria has made face masks compulsory for shoppers (and is handing them out).
8. Consider using FaceTime, Zoom or Microsoft Teams for calls, meetings or socialising
Many amazing and positive things are happening. You might try a 'gin and tonic' by Zoom or listen to a sermon!
Consider setting up a 'virtual background' or 'touching up' your appearance on Zoom if you're worried about the clutter in your room!
Enjoy the better 'air quality' too!
Last, but not least, please contact the Knightsbridge Association or the Knightsbridge Neighbourhood Forum if you have suggestions for future bulletins or would like us to pass ideas to Westminster City Council. They offer help and need ours.
Important note: Always check and follow the official health and other advice. These tips and resources are suggestions only.
Updated on 5 April 2020