Calling all businesses – apply for a grant up to £25,000

We are delighted to announce that businesses in West Berkshire may now apply for grants from a new scheme called the Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG) Challenge Fund, which aims to support environmentally friendly economic recovery and growth.

Whether you are a sole trader or a limited company, you can apply for grants ranging from £5,000 to £25,000. The funding will be paid upfront towards projects that will help your business to recover and grow in an environmentally friendly way.  

Businesses must submit a full proposal in line with the Council’s eligibility criteria and are invited to apply from 13 December to 13 February 2022. This will be followed by a review and payment period in March 2022.

Return of Holiday Activities and Food Programme

Our Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) programme is back for the Christmas holidays.

Primarily for children who receive free school meals, HAF is designed to keep kids fit and healthy through a range of fun activities.

We’ve now been given more money by the Government to expand this programme  so even more children and young people can get involved.

HAF will run from 20-23 December 2021 with 500 places on offer at 13 sites across the district.

Reduce your food waste

Will you be cooking for more people this Christmas? Make sure your food doesn’t go to waste by:

  • Only buying what you need.
  • Checking the use by dates.
  • Seeing if you can freeze anything you won’t use in time.
  • Getting creative in the kitchen with any leftovers.
  • Keeping your fridge cool between 0-5 degrees centigrade, this can help make your food last for longer.

Household Waste Recycling Centre permit scheme is going digital

We are introducing a new online registration scheme for access to our Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRCs), replacing the current paper permits with a digital system. Online registrations are now open but paper permits, including green car permits that have already expired, will continue to be accepted until 28 February 2022.

The digital permit system will enable households to register and update their vehicle details, household addresses and contact details instantly, allowing for seamless entry into the Household Waste Recycling Centres, so long as you have booked an appointment.  

Tilehurst South and Holybrook Bi-Election

A reminder that a poll for the election of a District Councillor for Tilehurst South & Holybrook will be held on Thursday 16 December 2021, between the hours of 7:00am and 10:00pm.

Those entitled to vote will have already received a poll card or a postal vote. Please check your polling station location on the card. 

Remember to take a pen or pencil to mark your vote and you must wear a face covering and follow the procedures in place at the polling station.

Shop Local, Shop Green

Don’t forget, if you are thinking of some sustainable Christmas presents this year make sure you check out our special green magazine.

The bumper edition has a magnificent collection of eco-friendly local businesses to shop with while looking after our planet. Plus there are some special discounts available too! 

COVID Update

Now, more than ever, we know how important it is to protect yourself, your friends and family and the wider community by testing with Lateral Flow Tests (LFTs). 

It is recommended that you complete a test before:

  • visiting someone who might be more at risk or vulnerable to Covid-19, or
  • going into an environment where the risks will be higher, for example, crowded and enclosed spaces where more people might be infectious, and there is limited fresh air.

The LFTs are also to be used by people contacted by NHS Test & Trace; if they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19, they will advise you to complete a seven-day course of Lateral Flow Tests.

Completing this will enable you to have security that you do not have the virus or pass it on to other people you may be in contact with.

For more information, please visit our Contact Tracing Page:

If you feel unwell and have symptoms, please book in a PCR immediately:  

With these changes and the build-up to Christmas, the demand for the kits has risen dramatically over the past couple of days. It is recommended that you order online or visit your local pharmacy if possible:.

Our Mobile Assisted Testing Team will be at the Kennet Centre next week, 20 to 24 December, to support residents, advise on how to complete your tests, and provide information on Vaccinations and Boosters.

They will be on site:

  • Monday 20 December: 9.30am to 4pm
  • Tuesday 21 December: 9.30am to 1.30pm
  • Wednesday 22 December: 9.30am to 4pm
  • Thursday 23 December: 9.30am to 4pm
  • Friday 24 December: 9.30am to 2pm

They can offer test kits to residents who have not been able to order them online or collect from a pharmacy. Priority will be given to those households where someone has been advised to test daily via test and trace as a close contact.

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