We appreciate everything you, your family and your friends are doing to protect each other and the West Berkshire community, and we thank you for that.

We are currently experiencing a large increase in cases across the West Berkshire area; for context, they have more than doubled in the past week and are now at the highest since we started regular testing in the community.

We understand some of the case increase is due to the issues created by the negative lab results that many people experienced. While this is beyond our control, we hope everyone can come together to keep each other safe from Covid-19.

As a reminder, the issues experienced recently were caused by the lab; rather than Newbury Showground, the Showground site continues to run successfully and is available for bookings.

Thank you to everyone who completes a PCR test when feeling unwell; this helps keep everyone safe.

Please help us all to stop the spread of the virus, that means;

  • wearing a face-covering in crowded areas, indoors or on public transport
  • keeping your distance from other people where possible
  • washing or sanitising your hands regularly
  • booking a free test and isolate if you feel unwell
  • testing twice weekly with lateral flow tests if you don’t have COVID-19 symptoms
  • keep up to date with your COVID-19 vaccinations – having all your doses protect you and those around you, check if you can have a booster jab

We ask everyone to do these wherever possible. Even if you are fully vaccinated, you can still catch and pass on COVID, and though you may have a milder case, it could be devastating for a person you give it to.

Remember that from this week 12 to 15 year olds can get their dose of vaccine from the vaccination hubs – book on the NHS site here

If you are eligible for a booster jab and have not yet heard from your GP, you can now book direct if it is six months since your second jab – book on the NHS site here

We want to remind everyone to stay safe while attending parties or Trick or Treating with Halloween next week. While you’re Trick or Treating, being outside is excellent for good ventilation, but we would encourage people to only give up wrapped sweets and try to sanitise hands regularly. 

For parties, do try to keep some windows open for fresh air, and if possible, use masks too, maybe make them part of your costume!

We want to encourage all residents to continue to use Lateral Flow Tests twice a week, especially if they come into regular contact with larger groups of people. 

You can collect your FREE kits from any Pharmacy, or order online. For more information, please visit the West Berks website and go to the COVID-19 section and view the Lateral Flow Testing page.

And finally,

You can join us at our next Local Outbreak Engagement Board Meeting on Tuesday, 26th October at 6.00 pm.
You’ll be able to get an update on our local COVID-19 situation, vaccination programme and our COVID-19 related communications activities.
The meeting will be live-streamed on our YouTube channel.

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