SOLIHULL parks will remain open for now but people must follow the coronavirus crisis rules, says the council’s leader.
Efforts also continue to help the borough’s most vulnerable 3,000 people, added councillor Ian Courts.
In his latest leader’s statement, he said: “Our parks remain open for the moment. Currently we have no dog walking Public Space Protection Orders in place in any of Solihull’s parks. We have always taken the view that our parks should be open and accessible to all, but we do expect dog walkers to control their dogs and be considerate to other users.
“In Shirley, we have had to close our extremely popular dog agility play area in Shirley Park. This is a small enclosure, making it impossible for people to adhere to the social distancing requirements.
“In accordance with government guidance, we have had to close the cemeteries at Robin Hood and Woodlands, other than for funerals. There is a security presence at the main gates to control access and to ensure the limit of six mourners at a service is not exceeded.
“This will be very distressing for families, but it is vital to minimise the risk of transmission and protect both mourners, and the business-critical workforce at the crematoria. I do hope families can think about a celebration of life, or a memorial, after the pandemic has finished.”
He reiterated the message of ‘Stay home, protect our NHS and save lives!’
Coun Courts added: “From a council perspective, we are doing everything necessary to support our most vulnerable. We know that out of the 1.5 million extremely vulnerable people nationally, there are over 3,000 in Solihull.
“GPs will continue to add to this number and we are cross-referencing these people with our own adult social care service users to make sure we don’t miss anyone.
“We have directly contacted nearly 500 on the list and have issued a small number of emergency food parcels when required.
“We are now ramping up our capacity to undertake over 600 wellbeing calls every day to check our most vulnerable people are OK. I’m sure everyone will understand that, to do this work effectively, we will have to prioritise our focus on only our most vulnerable.”