Update from the Leader of Stratford-on-Avon District Council

Released on 5 May 2020 Archived Press Release

Stratford News

Stratford-on-Avon District Council is now beginning to shift its focus from dealing with the medical emergency and initial support phase into thinking about and planning for the future.

Operationally we have, since the start of the lockdown:

  • Delivered, with the help of volunteers some 800 food parcels
  • Provided grants of £25.4 million to 2,074 businesses (as at 4 May)
  • Taken up to 800 calls a day in our contact centre at the peak
  • Purchased 200 laptops enabling over 200 staff to work from home
  • Kept the organisation running effectively by using 'MS Teams' and Zoom
  • Participated fully in regional and national fora using video conferencing
  • Introduced a 'buddy system' that keeps all councillors up to date
  • Issued daily press updates and social media posts

    The infographic gives a picture of how much we have done.

The rolling 7 day average for daily cases in Warwickshire shows a decline from about 800 cases on 8 April to fewer than 400 at the end of April. The entire infrastructure that needs to be in place is now well established and running pretty smoothly.

In the early days there were numerous glitches that had to be sorted but it is a tribute to staff and volunteers that these were, in the vast majority of cases sorted swiftly.

We are now turning our attention to economic recovery, and, as Stratford-on-Avon District, according to one report is the 4th hardest hit council in the country this is vital. We do not expect a rapid recovery.

We also have to face a challenging financial position for the District Council. We estimate that COVID-19 has cost us £8.1m in lost revenue just in the first half of this municipal year alone.  This lost revenue will NEVER be recovered. In addition, extra costs incurred to date are at £337K and rising. We have received £1,343,110 from central government leaving a gap of over £6.75m.

So, as one set of challenges come under control we are faced with a completely different set. The good news is that both Councillors and Officers are working together extremely well.

Cllr Tony Jefferson, Leader of the Council says: "The Chinese reputedly have a saying - 'May you live in interesting times' - we certainly do. Stay safe"

Contact details

Stratford-on-Avon District Council
Elizabeth House, Church Street,
Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire,
CV37 6HX
Tel: 01789 267575