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News and Features from Harborough District Council - July 2020
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Councillor Phil King,
Leader of Harborough District Council
It's time to get behind our shops and local economy
In just a few days time, more local businesses, including hairdressers, hotels, and pubs, will reopen in the Harborough district. 

The message from retailers is clear: 'we are open in the Harborough district' and fortunately not affected by the localised lockdown in Leicester. 

Working with retail groups, businesses, the county council, and other organisations, Harborough District Council has put in place, very quickly, a number of measures to create a safe environment for shoppers to ensure that businesses could reopen safely.

Getting these businesses open again is a hugely significant milestone. It has been great to see people return and begin to shop again, and I urge everyone in the district to continue to support their town and village centre shops at this time. 

Look out for our 'shop local' campaign which is encouraging people to help reinvigorate the local economy.

In light of what's happening in Leicester, I reiterate the importance of hand-washing and maintaining social distance in our day-to-day lives.

Finally, I thank all those local businesses which are working with us as we move forward, with optimism, to a new 'normal'. 

Councillor Phil King
Do you need support from our local hub?
If you, or someone you know, is vulnerable or self-isolating, and does not have a local support network, you can contact Harborough District Council's Community Hub if you:
  • need immediate help with supplies of essential food
  • are feeling lonely or would like a friendly phone call or text message
  • would like to connect with a local community group
  • need transport to medical appointments
  • would like advice about staying active and exercising
To refer yourself or someone you are concerned about please visit:   

If you cannot use the online forms please email: including contact details and support required or call
01858 821 232 from 9am-5pm.
Town centres 'open for business' with safe shopping measures in place
Shops and businesses are 'open for business' across Harborough district following the Government's easing of the national lockdown – and more businesses are set to reopen in July.

Harborough district is not affected by the Leicester lockdown imposed this week and our shops remain open for trade. More information about the Leicester lockdown, and affected areas (with a handy postcode checker), can be found on our website here
In Market Harborough and Lutterworth; 'Highstreet Helpers' (pictured) wearing high-visibility vests, are helping guide shoppers in our town centres; there are also public hand sanitiser stations in high streets, and street markings to show people where to queue.
The public toilets in the Commons car park in Market Harborough, are open with additional cleaning arrangements in place, new signage, and staff on hand to allow one person in at a time. We have also opened our public toilets in Welland Park and Little Bowden Recreation Ground.
To create a safer pedestrian environment, temporary road closures have been introduced in collaboration with Leicestershire County Council, Lutterworth Town Council, retail groups and local businesses.

These apply to Adam and Eve Street, and Church Street (pictured) in Market Harborough, and in Church Street in Lutterworth. These road closures will be monitored and reviewed on an ongoing basis.
We are also working with local businesses following further Government announcements this week that hairdressers, hotels, pubs and other businesses in England can from 4 July 2020 and how they can do this safely.
We are also working on a 'shop local' campaign to encourage people to support their local shops, and markets, at this time.

In line with businesses opening, Harborough District Council will look to re-instate car parking charges at all Council-owned car parks across the Harborough District, over the coming weeks, but with some changes. Details will be shared publicly once a date is agreed.  Parking restrictions continue to apply at on-street locations in town centres.

The latest information for the Harborough district is available at
New podcasts on how the council has responded to Covid-19 crisis
A new podcasts series is being published over the next couple of weeks on YouTube, documenting how Harborough District Council have adapted to support residents and businesses throughout the Covid-19 crisis, and onwards as we look forward to the recovery phase.
The episodes, which are each approximately seven minutes long, cover a range of topics including, fly-tipping management, virtual planning meetings, increased safeguarding and local food banks.
They include interviews with council colleagues who have been redeployed from their usual roles to support the evolving needs of people across the district.
You can find the podcasts here:  
We hope you enjoy listening to the podcasts in the series, and we would welcome any feedback.

Please send comments to:
Plea to use parks responsibly as action taken on litter and disorder
A joint patch walk and extra patrols are among the actions taking place to tackle recent anti-social behaviour at a park in Market Harborough.

Harborough District Council, Police, Leicestershire Fire, and Leicestershire County Council have joined forces as part of a proactive response to anti-social behaviour at Little Bowden Recreation Ground including public disorder, rowdiness and littering.

There will be a multi-agency patch walk, as well as extra patrols of both police and council officers. Further signage and security measures are also being looked into.

Extra bins have been provided and fines of £150 will given out to those caught littering.

A letter is being sent to residents, living close to the recreation ground, to update them on steps being taken.

Read about the actions being taken here. 
People should report litter to the Council via our online form

To report anti-social behaviour residents should call the police on 101 or report online.
Farmers market set to return to town centre with new measures in place
The popular Farmers Market will return to The Square in Market Harborough on Thursday 2 July 2020, from 9am to 3pm.

The monthly market had been stopped due to the coronavirus pandemic but will restart with new safety measures in place.

Social distancing measures will be introduced, which includes fencing of the Square to create a one-in, one-out queuing system at entry, a revised layout and hand sanitiser stations in place.

Sit down seating will not be available, and shoppers will be asked not to touch produce without buying and are encouraged to pay by card.

The return of the Farmers Market follows the full reopening of the indoor market hall.
Council's customer services reopening for appointments only
We will reopen the Council's customer services at The Symington Building for essential enquiries from week commencing 13 July 2020.
This will be by appointment only
Appointments will be offered on a Monday and Wednesday between 10am-12noon and 1pm-4pm. 

There will be no internal seated waiting area and, to limit access to the building, only one customer per enquiry will be allowed unless the customer is vulnerable or exceptional circumstances apply. 

Only customers with a pre-booked appointment will be able to see a customer services advisor – our walk-in service is not available.  Once entering the Customer Services area you will be required to follow the signage and support the 2m social distancing.

Hand sanitising station will be available on entering the building which customers will be required to use.
From 9 July 2020, customers will need to call 01858 8282828 number and select the option for an appointment, or they can make an appointment online at 

An adviser will see if they can deal with the enquiry over the phone and if not the customer will be invited in for an appointment. Payments payments for services will not be taken through the appointment service.  
To ensure the number of people in the building is kept to a minimum, the public access PCs are not available and there are no toilets available for use by the public. 

Our Customer Service Advisors have been supplied with PPE including face coverings, gloves and hand sanitiser for their personal use, and our customer services desks have been fitted with plastic screening. We will also be carrying out cleaning on a regular basis to help reduce the risk of infecting others.
Fly-tipping campaign still catching culprits - and now it's up for awards
A campaign which has dramatically reduced fly-tipping in the Harborough district and led to a number of prosecutions and fines for culprits has been has nominated at the National Recycling Awards 2020.

Our Tip Off campaign has been shortlisted in two categories - 'Campaign of the Year' and 'Local Authority Success'.

It comes as the Council announces a double success after a man who dumped rubbish in a lane in the Harborough district was caught on CCTV and fined – along with the householder who paid him to remove the waste.

Householders and businesses are reminded that they legally responsible for any waste produced on their property. They have a 'duty of care' to check that any person or business disposing of their waste is legally allowed to do so and can do this on the Environment Agency website.

We have also just launched banners on some of our refuse collection vehicles which read: "Fly-tippers beware - we are watching you."

Report fly-tipping or find out more about Tip Off at
New Chairman to support charity for visually impaired people
Councillor Stephen Bilbie has been appointed as the chairman of Harborough District Council for 2020/21 receiving the chains of office from outgoing chairman Cllr Barbara Johnson.

Cllr Bilbie, a district councillor for the Fleckney ward since 2015 who has been involved with many community groups in Leicestershire, has chosen Vista, which works with people with sight loss and their families in Leicestershire, as his nominated charity for the year.

The Vice Chairman will be Cllr Neil Bannister, ward councillor for the Dunton ward.

Outgoing chairman Cllr Johnson, helped raise a total of £4,000 for her chosen charity Spectrum LAS over the year – a support group for parents and carers of children, young people and adults on the Autism Spectrum, thanked those who had supported her during her year in office.
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