'Helping residents get back to our town centres safely'

Shops and pubs reopened last week in Romford Town Centre as Covid restrictions are eased. Picture by

Shops and pubs reopened in Romford as Covid restrictions are eased - Credit: Ellie Hoskins

As we move, cautiously, along the government’s roadmap – the council will continue to do our bit.

Last month we began to see our brilliant town centres spring back to life. We saw many non-essential shops and services such as hairdressers, retail and beauty salons, plus outdoor hospitality venues, reopen after months with the shutters down.

We are carrying out hundreds of patrols and face-to-face visits offering Covid-secure advice to businesses across the borough.

Fifty Covid marshals have joined our public protection officers, working closely with police, to enforce any flouting of the rules. This comes alongside the Havering Business Innovation Grant to help small businesses get back on their feet.

Councillor Damian White, leader of Havering Council. Picture: Mark Sepple/Havering Council

Councillor Damian White is inviting residents to take a minute to remember the Covid-19 victims. - Credit: Mark Sepple

In addition, free parking for four weeks in our car parks and on-street bays is providing a boost to local businesses and helping residents get back to our town centres safely.

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At our annual council meeting last month - I was delighted to see Cllr John Mylod re-elected as mayor of Havering for a second term. His first term was cut short due to the pandemic.

Serving another year will help his chosen charities benefit from more of his brilliant work.

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This looks set to be a brighter year for Havering. The vaccine programme is progressing at pace.

Everyone over 50 has now been offered a jab with Havering having one of the best records for vaccine take-up in London. We are on the path to recovery but let’s all remain sensible and take these next steps safely.

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