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Crawley Town Hall reopens but make sure you book an appointment

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Crawley Borough Council is offering a limited, appointment-only service at the Town Hall from Wednesday (22 July).

The Town Hall, on The Boulevard, has been closed since 24 March following government guidance.

It will reopen for residents to pay in cash if they’re unable to pay via any other channels, drop-off or collect an item or to use a self-service terminal. Where possible, the council ask that people please scan documents and send them to the council electronically.

Appointments to access other services aren’t currently available but this is to be reviewed regularly.

Several changes have been made to the ground floor of the building and how the council operates to ensure peoples safety and the safety of staff. These include:

·       You must have an appointment to enter the Town Hall. Please arrive on time; if you arrive early you will have to wait outside the building

·       You will have to sanitise your hands on entering and exiting the building

·       Council officers will sanitise surfaces after every visitor

·       A one-way system will be in place to ensure social distancing

·       Only one payment kiosk will be open and there will be no cashiers’ service. Cash payments will have to be made at the kiosk. Cheque, debit and credit card payments will not be accepted; debit card and credit card payments can be made online at crawley.gov.uk/payments, over the phone by calling our automated payments line on 01293 438312 or at your bank

·       The only public entrance to the building will be the front doors on The Boulevard; there will be no access from the multi-storey car park

·       The front doors will be closed and manually opened by a Customer Service Advisor to people with booked appointments.

To book an appointment, please call 01293 438000 or email comments@crawley.gov.uk Council officers will try to help you with your enquiry or advise of other ways to access our services in the first instance.

When booking, you will be asked for your full name, address and contact information for track and trace purposes. This information will be kept for a minimum of 21 days before being destroyed. You will also be asked if you have any accessibility needs. If you’re able to, please wear a face covering.

If you are dropping off or collecting an item, or making a payment, you will be given a 15-minute appointment. Self-service appointments will be an hour long.

Councillor Peter Lamb, Leader of Crawley Borough Council, said:

“Almost everything anyone ever needs to contact the council for can now be done online or over the phone; we would ask that people only come in if they have absolutely no alternative other than to make the trip. Pandemics do not spread themselves, only people spread pandemics.”

A wide range of council services, including paying bills and reporting a problem, can be accessed online through smartphones, tablets and computers.

Visit the council’s website at www.crawley.gov.uk for information and use myCrawley to access real-time information on your rubbish, recycling and garden waste collections, Council Tax account and much more.

Sign up at my.crawley.gov.uk

Business

Crawley jobs at risk as DW Sports goes into administration

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Jobs at DW Sports in Crawley town centre are at risk along with 1,700 hundred jobs across the country as the company announced it is to wind down the business.

The sports website has also been closed with immediate effect.

According to reports closing down sales are due to begin at the remaining stores as the business comes to an end.

Fitness First, a sister company of DW is to continue to operate as a separate company and its 43 clubs are not to be affected by the news.

Chief executive Martin Long said:

“As a consequence of Covid-19, we found ourselves in a position where we were mandated by Government to close down both our retail store portfolio and our gym chain in its entirety for a protracted period, leaving us with a high fixed-cost base and zero income.

“Like many other retail businesses, the consequences of this extremely challenging operating market have created inevitable profitability issues for DW Sports.

“The decision to appoint administrators has not been taken lightly but will give us the best chance to protect viable parts of the business, return them to profitability, and secure as many jobs as possible.

“It is a difficult model for any business to manage through without long-term damage, and with the limited support which we have been able to gain.

“Having exhausted all other available options for the business, we firmly believe that this process can be a platform to restructure the business and preserve many of our gyms for our members, and also protect the maximum number of jobs possible for our team members.”

Crawley Councillor Peter Smith, Cabinet member for Planning and Economic Development, said:

“This is terrible news for the staff of DW Sports; I sympathise with them and hope that they are able to secure other employment quickly. Our Employ Crawley service is currently providing free one-to-one employability and training support to jobseekers by phone, email and text.”

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