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  • covid19 ()
    Article: Jul 7, 2020

    New local data from Public Health England and the Joint Biosecurity Centre, working with Bedford Borough Council, Bedfordshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Bedfordshire, Luton and Milton Keynes Commissioning Collaborative have been released as part of a 'deep dive' in Bedford Borough, shows that while Coronavirus infections are still high in the Borough, they are starting to decline.

  • Mayor Dave Hodgson
    Article: Jul 6, 2020

    Mayor Dave Hodgson has thanked residents, businesses, NHS staff, all our carers and council staff, police and other emergency services in his monthly Bedford Independent Column.

    You can read the column below:

    I would like to thank everyone for playing their part. The last four months have been difficult.

  • Money
    Article: Jul 5, 2020

    As you will be aware the Council is now facing a large budget deficit due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

    Back in March, the Local Government Secretary said "The government stands ready to do whatever is necessary to support councils in their response to coronavirus". It is time for the Government to stand by those words. Mayor Dave Hodgson has set up a petition calling on the Government to fund all councils properly to prevent massive increases in Council Tax and cuts to services - please sign it here and encourage your friends and families asking them to sign too.

  • Coronavirus graphic
    Article: Jul 4, 2020

    Infection rates in Bedford Borough are high compared to other places in the South, so Bedford Borough Council is urging people to be careful this weekend.

    The Government announced that pubs and restaurants across England could open from Saturday 4 July.

    However locally, while we are not currently seeing a spike in the virus, rates of infection are high compared to other areas.

  • Mayor Dave Hodgson
    Article: Jul 3, 2020

    The Government has finally released the Coronavirus 'Pillar 2' testing data. You will recall Mayor Dave Hodgson has been calling on the Government to provide this data, along with more detailed postcode level data to enable us to make better informed decisions locally.

    The 'Pillar 2' data includes the results of tests carried out at drive-through centres and home testing kits processed in commercial labs. These have been the majority of Bedford Borough's tests for the last few weeks.

    A full set of the combined 'Pillar 1' and 'Pillar 2' positive test numbers is at https://coronavirus.data.gov.uk/region#category=utlas&map=rate (updated daily).

    Bedford Borough has, as of last night, 1,227 positive tests - or a rate 715 per 100,000 residents (cumulative i.e. total to date). This is one of the highest rates in the country and the highest in the south of England.

    While have not had a spike, like Leicester, we need to remain cautious. To avoid the risk of a local lockdown, slow the spread of the virus and save lives, I am urging residents to stay at home as much as possible this weekend. If you do need to go out keep two metres apart, wear a face covering (particularly on public transport), and regularly wash your hands and please do follow the guidance of any shop, pub, restaurant or business that you visit.

    This week the Council adopted our Local Outbreak Plan and you can read it here. The Plan details what we will do if there is a new spike in cases or a localised outbreak. It is hoped the Council do not have to use it, but it is better to be prepared.

    Mayor Dave is continuing to press for better and more detailed data and we should have the draft report of the Public Health England and Joint Biosecurity Centre's 'deep dive' next week.

  • Play Parks remain closed
    Article: Jul 2, 2020

    With ongoing concerns about the high infection rate in Bedford Borough, Bedford Borough Council has decided that children's play areas will not be opening on Saturday 4 July.

    Play areas are a risk area for infection to be spread, and with a high rate of infection locally, this decision has been taken to help slow the spread of the virus and keep people safe.

  • Mayor Dave Hodgson
    Article: Jul 1, 2020

    Bedford Borough Council has published its Local Outbreak Control Plan, setting out how it will respond to a local coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. The plan will be formally endorsed by the Member Local Outbreak Engagement Board when it meets on Thursday 2 July at 5pm.

    With the introduction of the NHS Test and Trace programme all Unitary and County Councils were asked to produce a Local Outbreak Control Plan. These plans set out how local authorities will work with communities and partners to prevent and respond to local issues and situations related to coronavirus and slow the spread of infection. The plan also provides a specific focus on measures to support those who maybe more vulnerable to the effects of coronavirus.

  • Help for bugs and bees
    Article: Jun 30, 2020

    Mayor Dave Hodgson has announced measures which will see the planting of new hedgerows and increased areas of natural grass and wildflower meadows.

    Wildflower species such as clover and dandelion provide important pollen and nectar sources for insects, bees and other pollinators that are a vital part of our ecosystem. Allowing grass to grow longer produces a more sustainable natural environment and provides food and shelter for animals, bees and other insects.