Published: Tuesday, 23rd February 2021

Proposed plans are now in place for how the country will come out of lockdown.

Dear residents, 
The Prime Minister’s announcement in the House of Commons and at Downing Street yesterday (Monday, 22 February) gives us all hope for the future. 
We have all endured the pandemic for almost a year and, whilst it is not over, we welcome the fact that we now have proposed plans for how the country will come out of lockdown, as well as when we might be able to see more of our loved ones. 
Many facilities and attractions across Medway have been hugely impacted by coronavirus, but the government’s roadmap to recovery is encouraging news for when more things might be able to return to normal. 
I am also looking forward to being able to reopen some of our own affected services, such as libraries and leisure centres, and gradually being able to do more of the things we love. 
We will carefully be reviewing all of the details set out in the government’s roadmap to recovery and put plans in place for when affected services might be able to gradually and safely welcome residents back. We will provide a further update as soon as we have more details on confirmed upcoming changes to our own services. Until then, there will be no change to the way our services are currently being run due to the existing restrictions which remain in place. 
Council staff are, however, continuing to provide essential services and support the most vulnerable members of our community and this work will continue throughout the pandemic and beyond. Thank you to the voluntary agencies and members of the community who continue to provide support to residents most in need whilst the current restrictions remain in place.
In light of the details that schools can welcome pupils back from 8 March, our schools team will be working closely with headteachers on arrangements for the safest possible return to the classroom and continuing to provide schools with support and advice during the pandemic. 
Despite the gradual planned easing of restrictions over the coming weeks and months, it is important everyone continues to be cautious and follows the government’s guidelines – none of us want to see another increase in case rates or loved ones feeling unwell from coronavirus. 
Until then, please continue to only go out for essential journeys and follow the guidelines to help protect our NHS and our loved ones. By keeping the case rates down, we will all be able to get back to doing the things we love sooner. 
Thank you for your continued patience while the restrictions remain in place. 
Cllr Alan Jarrett

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