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Crawley tops the list of West Sussex councils with the highest number of COVID cases per 100k

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Data from 25th Dec - 31st Dec 2020

As the country enters its third lockdown the latest figures show Crawley is top of the list for COVID cases per 100,000 people.

In the last week alone 831 cases per 100,000 were recorded bringing the total number of cases for Crawley to 3571.

This is a rise of 368 cases from the previous week with deaths now at 91.

But the highest rise in cases for the past week is in Arun with a huge rise of 572 cases in the last week.

Mid Sussex currently has the highest number of reported cases at 4060 with also the highest number of deaths at 194.

Deaths registered up till 18th Dec ’20

The figures come just as Crawley Council announced that businesses that have had to close due to tier 4 restrictions can now apply for government grants.

This latest grant, called Local Restriction Support Grants (closed businesses), are for the period 26 December 2020 until 8 January 2021.

The grants are based on rateable value and the rate of payment for eligible businesses is:

  • For properties with a rateable value of £15,000 or under, grants are £667
  • For properties with a rateable value of between £15,001 and £50,999, grants are £1,000
  • For properties with a rateable value of £51,000 or over, grants are £1,500.

Three other grants are currently available but the number of applications remains low. The grants are:

  • Additional Restrictions Grant
  • Local Restrictions Support Grant (closed businesses during the second national lockdown)
  • Christmas grants for ‘wet-led’ pubs.

Crawley Borough Council is administering and distributing all four grants on behalf of the government.

Additional Restrictions Grants are for businesses that were affected by the lockdown but are not legally required to close. This funding lasts until March 2022.

The previous round ended with the council receiving just 367 applications, including 342 from taxi drivers.

Applications have reopened and must be submitted before 10 January 2021.

Eligible businesses are those who:

  • Are not entitled to Local Restriction Support Grants (were not mandated to close), and
  • Were open and trading the day before national restrictions were imposed (Wednesday 4 November), and
  • Can prove that they were severely impacted by the restrictions.

Businesses can check if they’re eligible for the Additional Restrictions Grant by visiting gov.uk/guidance/check-if-youre-eligible-for-the-coronavirus-additional-restrictions-grant

Local Restrictions Support Grants (closed) are for businesses that pay business rates and had to close during the second lockdown from 5 November to 2 December. Only 181 businesses have received this grant to date.

The rate of payment for eligible businesses is:

  • For properties with a rateable value of £15,000 or under, grants are £1,334
  • For properties with a rateable value of more than £15,000 and below £51,000, grants are £2,000
  • For properties with a rateable value of £51,000 or over, grants are £3,000.

Christmas grants of £1,000 for ‘wet-led’ pubs are for pubs that had to close due to regional restrictions. Six pubs have benefited from this so far.

To apply, your pub must be based in Crawley, earn less than 50 per cent of income from food and had to close due to regional restrictions introduced on 2 December. Only the business rates payer can apply.

Applications for all four grants can be made at grantapproval.co.uk

There is further guidance and a copy of the West Sussex countywide policy on the council’s website at crawley.gov.uk/coronavirus  

Councillor Peter Lamb, Leader of the Council, said:

“Crawley’s economy has been hit harder than any other in the country by the government’s Covid-19 restrictions. While we continue to lobby for more comprehensive support for the town, it is important businesses claim any support which is made available through this period.”

For more details on help available for businesses visit crawley.gov.uk/emergency/coronavirus-information/businesses-and-employers

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Crawley College to reopen following incident

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Crawley College will be beginning a phased reopening to students from tomorrow, Thursday 29 April.

The phased reopening will take place between tomorrow and Tuesday 4 May with full details by courses provided on the college website www.crawley.ac.uk . Students should check details before returning to campus.

The campus has remained closed for the past two days following police investigations into the incident that took place at the college on Monday (26 April).

Vicki Illingworth, Principal of Crawley College, said:

“We are looking forward to welcoming our students and staff back to the college.

“We’d like to reassure everyone, the college is safe and they will be well supported in their return to the campus.

“Sussex Police have confirmed that this is being treated as an isolated incident which is not terror related and nobody else is being sought in connection with the incident.  The individual concerned is in police custody and has been charged.”

“We are now focussed on ensuring we can bring students and staff safely back on site. We’re proud of the service we provide to our students to give them opportunities in education and training.

“I can reassure everyone that this was a one-off incident and we have strategies in place to keep everyone as safe as possible, as well as giving the students the support they need to come back and join us to complete their studies successfully.”

Vicki also echoed her earlier comments, paying tribute to the staff who supported students who were on site during the events of Monday afternoon.

She added:

“I continue to remain full of admiration of our team. They pulled together on Monday and implemented all of the protocols we have in place to keep students safe.

“They’ve continued to work together to support each other and their students over the past couple of days – and they will continue to do so when students return to campus.

“We are also particularly proud of the two members of staff who acted so bravely and swiftly to apprehend the individual before the police arrived. They acted selflessly to protect their students and the college community. They have asked for privacy during this time.

“It was a very intense time for everyone involved.

“The students who were kept inside the college and who were part of the emergency evacuation were supported throughout by our staff and counselling services have been available to them this week. These services will continue to be in place for them to access.

“We’ve continued to be in touch with our students through our support services to check that they are ok and we will resume face-to-face counselling as soon as we can.”

Work is taking place at the college campus to repair some damage which was sustained during the evacuation and subsequent investigations, with teams working hard to ensure the campus is ready for reopening.

The college would like to thank students, staff, the Police and Emergency Services and the wider community for their ongoing support and understanding.

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