Search site
Cymraeg
Exclamation mark

COVID-19 firebreak - 6.00pm Friday 23 October

Due to the continuing trend of increasing numbers of positive COVID-19 cases across Swansea, the Welsh Government has announced a firebreak lockdown from 6.00pm on Friday 23 October to the morning of 9 November.

The five main restrictions being introduced on 23 October at 6.00pm by the Welsh Government are:

  1. People must stay at home, except for very limited purposes.
  2. People must not visit other households or meet other people they do not live with.
  3. Certain businesses and venues, including bars, restaurants and most shops must close.
  4. Secondary schools will provide learning online only for the week after half-term, other than for children in Years 7 and 8. Primary schools and childcare settings will remain open.
  5. Face coverings continue to be mandatory in the indoor public spaces that remain open (subject to certain exemptions and exceptions), including on public transport and in taxis.

General questions

Questions about council housing

Questions about education

Questions about culture and leisure

Questions about public toilets

Questions about Swansea Market

Questions about shops

Questions about waste and recycling

Questions about social services

Questions about business support

Questions about highways and cleansing

Questions about travel

Questions about births, deaths and weddings

More information


General questions

 

Will the Civic Centre contact centre be closed during the firebreak?

Yes. The contact centre will be closed. We'd advise residents to use our online services on the website or get in touch via the call centre.

I've heard that councils are administering a Welsh Government scheme to provide payments to people who have to self-isolate. Is this true?

At the moment local authorities in Wales are working with the Welsh Government to finalise arrangements to support people who may be eligible for grants if they have to self-isolate. We're waiting on details from Welsh Government about eligibility criteria and other arrangements and will make an announcement as soon as we're able to.


Council housing

 

I'm due to have a new kitchen/bathroom fitted in my council property. Will this still go ahead?

All kitchen and bathroom work will still go ahead as planned as long as both the contractor and tenants are well and have no symptoms of coronavirus. Contractors will make contact with tenants to agree when the work will start.

Contractors have already started fitting a new kitchen/bathroom in my council home. Will they still complete the work while the firebreak is in place?

Work to complete jobs already started will continue as long as both contractor and tenants have not got symptoms of coronavirus and if tenants are not self-isolating.

Can I still contact the district housing office during the lockdown?

In common with other council offices, district housing offices will be closed for public access during the firebreak. Our staff are still contactable and our online services will be available as normal. Emergencies will be dealt with.

What if I need emergency repairs during the firebreak?

There is no charge to the emergency repairs service. It will still be available to council tenants throughout the firebreak period.


Education

 

Will schools be closed?

All schools will break-up for a week for the October half-term as planned on Friday 23 October. For the week starting 2 November then all primary schools will reopen as usual. Comprehensive schools will also open on 2 November but for Year 7 and 8 only with older pupils learning from home that week. Pupils in Year 9 and over will return to school on Monday 9 November. Any pupil who has an exam during this period should attend as normal. School transport will run during the week starting Monday 2 November and arrangements will be in place to ensure all pupils who are eligible for free school meals will receive a payment or food parcel.

What about universities?

Universities can continue to provide a combination of in person teaching and blended learning. While incidents of Covid-19 have risen in the student population, evidence shows this is taking place outside the teaching and learning environment. Universities are operating Covid-secure campuses and adhering to strict social distancing. Coronavirus cases amongst staff remain low. It is also much safer for students to remain on campus than to travel home.

When will pupils at Special Teaching Facilities (STFs) return to school?

All children in specialist teaching facilities in Swansea's secondary schools can access their facility during week commencing 2 November.

How can parents and carers support schools?

It is important when you are dropping off or collecting children from school that you follow social distancing and no matter how tempting please do not congregate at the school gates. It is vital that all parents and carers avoid social gatherings inside and outside their homes during the next fortnight and beyond.


Culture, Leisure

 

Can I visit my local gym or pool?

No. They'll be closed during the firebreak. This includes the LC, leisure centres, pools and gyms run by Freedom Leisure on behalf of the council - and the Wales National Pool. In the meantime, to keep Freedom Leisure customers active they will be running a virtual fitness class programmeOpens new window during lockdown as a free service to all current members. They also plan a healthy eating and mental health seminar. Freedom plan to re-open their centres at 6.00am on 9 November, with the same opening times and programmes as pre-firebreak.

Will the Wales National Pool be open?

No - although Swim Wales will continue to use it as they are classed as an elite sports organisation and permitted to continue training.

Is Blackpill Lido open?

No This has already closed for the winter months. We plan to re-open it next year.

Can I pop to the Glynn Vivian or Plantasia?

No. They're closed under the firebreak restrictions. We'll let you know when they re-open.

Is the Grand Theatre open?

The Grand Theatre is not open for performances but part of it is currently being used as a Covid testing centre and this continues.

What about Swansea Museum?

That remains temporarily closed. We'll let you know when it re-opens.

Where do you suggest I exercise?

Please stay local and please only exercise with people from your household ie. those that live in the same house as you. Our beaches, parks, play areas and open spaces including our countryside rights of way, remain open for local exercise, as does the Prom. Please respect the 2m distance in these areas and on narrow paths. Exercise should start and end at home (unless there are mobility issues).

What exercise am I allowed to do?

No specific form of exercise - either by yourself or with members of your household - is prohibited. There are no limits on the distance you can travel during exercise, though the nearer you stay to your home, the better. Your exercise should start and finish from your home and you should exercise alone or with a member of your household.

Will council-led half-term activities take place in parks and open spaces eg. the Park Lives programme?

No. Unfortunately we've had to cancel all planned and pre-booked activities, including those scheduled for half-term. Participants who have booked online will be notified directly by programme organisers. The council's sport and health team have planned some virtual ParkLives health and fitness session during the firebreak. Details on: www.swansea.gov.uk/parklives

Will community centres remain open? Can I access these buildings for planned activities such as dance and other social events?

No. Community centres will be closed for all such activities. Some community centres will continue to provide emergency response to the pandemic, for example community led foodbanks, Covid testing centres and registered childcare provision - but the majority of services normally offered will be cancelled for the firebreak period.

Will I be able to train outdoors with my sports club or play outdoor sport with a group of friends?

No. All organised and social gatherings of this kind are not allowed. Further information will be made available direct from your local club or the national governing body of your sport.

Why may some people use the St Helen's rugby ground during the firebreak?

Under the restrictions the Ospreys - classed as an elite sports organisation - may continue training there.

Can I visit a council-run library or the West Glamorgan Archive Service?

No. They're closed for the firebreak from 6.00pm 23 October.

Are libraries automatically renewing all books and other items due for return during the firebreak?

If you have items out on loan your library will automatically renew them for you. If you have concerns about your account please email libraryline@swansea.gov.uk

Will Singleton Park's Swansea Bay Pop-up big top remain open?

No. The big top will close for the firebreak at 10.00pm on 22 October. Keep checking its social media for reopening plans.

Will outdoor markets take place?

No. The outdoor markets scheduled for Saturday 31 October (in Uplands) and Sunday, 8 November (Marina) will not take place.

Will outdoor eating areas within council parks remain open eg. Southend Gardens, Mumbles?

No. The eating places provided within parks were to allow business to extend their dining experience into the outdoors. These outdoor areas will close by 6.00pm on 23 October. Please keep checking with the relevant providers for their reopening plans.

Can I attend an organised fireworks display, Halloween party or other organised events?

No. The new restrictions prevent you meeting indoors or outdoors with people you do not live with. The aim of this short lockdown is to reduce physical contact between households to a minimum. Organised fireworks displays and other themed activities and parties must not take place.

Will I be able to attend an organised outdoor fitness class?

No. All organised classes of this nature are not allowed. You should exercise close to your home and all exercise must be undertaken alone or with members of your household ie. those people that you live with.

Can I visit the beachside hut I hire at Langland or the caravan I have at the Mumbles Hill Caravan Park?

Some people live on-site at the caravan park. If they don't leave, it's classified as their home so they should use it as such in line with the #StayHome restrictions. Regarding the huts, people with a 10-month lease or winter lease can't use them for the two-week firebreak. People may walk past their huts as part of their exercise but they can't spend time there.

Will Swansea Marina be open?

The Marina will be closed to all berth holders. Further information can be found on their webpage: Swansea Marina websiteOpens new window

Can I visit Swansea Tennis Centre through the firebreak?

No. It closes at 6pm on 23 October. All indoor and outdoor tennis activities will cease until 9 November. Ace Fitness will be closed for this period. the centre's autumn coaching programme due to re-start on 2 November will now re-start on 9 November. Through the firebreak, enrolment queries and bookings can be made by phone - 01792 650484. More information can be found on their Facebook page: Swansea Tennis Centre Ace Fitness FacebookOpens new window


Public toilets

 

Will the council's public toilets remain open?

Yes - except those at park and ride.


Swansea Market and toilets

 

What about Swansea Market?

Swansea Market will be open for essential traders including food traders and those offering takeaways. Normal opening hours will apply, 8.30am - 4.30pm, Monday to Saturday. The public toilets located there will remain open. Those traders who can open but are offering delivery services will be promoted via the Swansea Market website: www.swanseaindoormarket.co.uk/Opens new window


Shops

 

Which shops are allowed to stay open during the firebreak?

While most premises have been told to close for the duration of the firebreak, the following is a list of those allowed to remain open:

Premises remaining open:

  • Food retailers, including food markets, supermarkets, convenience stores, those providing food takeaway services and off-licences
  • Canteens in prisons or military use
  • Hospital and educational libraries
  • Newsagents
  • Building and hardware stores
  • Pharmacies
  • Bicycle shops
  • Petrol stations
  • Car repair and MoT services
  • Taxi or vehicle hire businesses
  • Banks, building societies and credit unions
  • Post offices
  • Laundrettes and dry cleaners
  • Dental services, opticians, audiology services, chiropody, chiropractors, osteopaths and other medical or health services
  • Veterinary surgeons and pet shops
  • Agricultural supplies
  • Livestock markets
  • Funeral directors

You can download a full list from the Welsh Government here. The list starts on page 22.

 


Waste and recycling

 

Can I still recycle my household waste?

Kerbside collections continue but, in line with Welsh Government regulations, Swansea's recycling centres will close for the firebreak. We'll let you know when they reopen. Anyone that has booked to use Llansamlet HWRC between Saturday 24 October 2020 and Sunday 8 November 2020 (inclusive) will need to re-book. Bulky waste collections continue.


Social Services

 

What about childcare in council settings?

Childcare settings, special schools and primary schools will remain open during the firebreak period. This includes childcare provision and holiday clubs that act as childcare intending to run over half-term. There will be some restrictions on the services that can run from community centres and places of worship, but these can remain open for childcare provision. Longstanding informal childcare arrangements that are absolutely necessary can continue. Nannies can work as normal.

Childcare in Swansea

 

Care providers in the City and County of Swansea

You can find more information about the care sector from the links on the Western Bay site.

There's a dedicated page for care providers including specific information for Swansea here.


Business support

 

What measures are being put in place to support businesses through the firebreak?

From Wednesday 28 October, businesses will be able to start applying for grants. Two lockdown grants will be available to support businesses, based on criteria set out by Welsh Government and we're aiming to make them as easy as possible to receive.

For full information go here: www.swansea.gov.uk/firebreakgrants

Which businesses can open?

Bars, restaurants and most shops must close. A full list of businesses that will need to close is being drawn up by the Welsh Government. In the meantime, any enquiries can be emailed to evh.licensing@swansea.gov.uk

Can I carry out building, repair or maintenance work in someone's home?

Work carried out in people's homes, for example by tradespeople, can continue as long as it is managed in a safe way and both the worker and household members are well and have no symptoms of coronavirus. However, we recommend that people consider whether the work can be safely deferred until after this short lockdown.

Like other businesses, people working in someone else's home must take all reasonable measures to ensure to mitigate the risk of coronavirus spreading when working in other people's households. Please see the guidance on reasonable measuresOpens new window and on working in other people's homesOpens new window for more information.

It is also recommended that no work should be carried out in any household where someone is isolating, unless it is to repair a fault which poses a direct risk to people's safety - for example, emergency plumbing, or carry out an adaptation to allow that household to remain in their property. If attendance is unavoidable (because of an urgent or emergency situation), additional precautions should be taken to keep workers and householders completely separate from each other. In these cases, Public Health Wales can provide advice to tradespeople and households. But no work should be carried out by a tradesperson who has coronavirus symptoms, however mild.

I have already started building, repair or maintenance work in someone's home, can I complete that work?

Work underway can continue as long as it is managed in a safe way and both the worker and household members are well and have no symptoms of coronavirus. However, we recommend that people consider whether the work can be safely deferred until after this short lockdown.


Highways and cleansing

 

Will these services continue as normal?

Yes.


Travel

 

What about Park and Ride?

That's closed temporarily. We'll let you know when it re-opens.

Is public transport still running?

Yes - but with reduced services. Full details on the operator websites including these: www.firstgroup.com/south-west-walesOpens new window and www.natgroup.co.uk/Opens new window

Will Swansea Mobility Hire stay open?

Yes. Please book online - Swansea Mobility Hire


Births, deaths and weddings

 

Can I still register a birth?

We will not be booking birth registration appointments for the two week firebreak period except in emergency cases. New parents can however continue to complete the online appointment form and we will contact them in due course to arrange an appointment. Parents of babies born in September or October need not worry about complying with the requirement to register within 6 weeks.

Can I still register a death?

Death registrations will not be changed by the firebreak and we will continue to register deaths over the telephone.

What about crematoria?

These will remain open.

Will bereavement services be continuing during the firebreak?

Yes, services will continue as follows:

  • For arranging a funeral or contacting bereavement services: the bereavement services admin office remains closed to the public but contact can be made at bereavementservices@swansea.gov.uk or telephone 01792 636481.
  • Cremation services: funeral attendance at Swansea crematorium is limited to 20 people; Singing, chanting and the use of wind instruments is not permitted due to the possible additional risk of infection; face coverings must be worn inside the chapel; the hall of remembrance is open but can only accommodate one visitor at a time.
  • Burial services: Our cemeteries remain open for burials and for visiting graves; the same attendance restrictions apply for burials i.e. 20 people maximum.

In line with Welsh Government regulations you should only attend a funeral if:

  • you are the person responsible for arranging the funeral;
  • you have been invited by the person arranging the funeral;
  • you are the carer of a person attending the funeral.

Mourners will need to keep two metres apart unless they live in the same household; people should not attend a service if they are unwell or if they are self-isolating or are vulnerable to the coronavirus; also extensive travel should be avoided to attend a funeral.

What about notices of marriage/civil partnerships?

We will not be booking any notice appointments for the two week firebreak period except in emergency cases.

What about citizenship ceremonies?

We will not be arranging appointments for individual citizenship ceremonies during the lockdown period except in emergency cases.

What about wedding ceremonies?

Ceremonies that have already been booked for the Civic Centre during the firebreak period can go ahead if couples wish to proceed. We will not be booking in any new ceremonies for this two week period. All couples due to marry in the Civic Centre will be contacted as soon as possible. 

Places of worship and Register Offices are able to remain open for wedding and civil partnership ceremoniesOpens new window already booked. This is subject to the need to take all reasonable measures to minimise the risk of spreading the virus on the premises. However couples due to marry in a place of worship should still contact the church/chapel to check whether their ceremony can still go ahead.

Other 'approved premises' are required to close alongside other businesses in the hospitality sector.

Wedding or civil partnership 'receptions' are not permitted, and in practice many venues will be required to close for the duration of this short lockdown.

What about copy certificates?

Customers can continue to apply for copy certificates online but unless a certificate is urgently required we would ask customers to avoid ordering during this period.


 

Where can I find out more information?

The best place is the Welsh Government website: https://gov.wales/coronavirusOpens new window

Powered by GOSS iCM