Coronavirus: Covid-19

Please join our Weekly Operational Calls on Wednesdays at 11am, where members are encouraged to share their respective business status & plans, as well as discuss different operational aspects of reopening. Add these calls to your calendar with joining instructions by clicking here.

Please also follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn for additional news and information.

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Key Government Advice

For the most up-to-date and reliable information, please follow the links below for the latest Government updates and advice:

COVID-19 Winter Plan

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Coronavirus Action Plan: A Guide to What You Can Expect

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COVID-19: Latest Government Advice

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COVID-19: Guidance for Employers and Businesses

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VisitBritian: Wuhan Novel Coronavirus Update

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Public Health England: Latest information on Coronavirus

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NHS Coronavirus (COVID-19) Hub

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Government Business Support Website

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Westminster City Council advice and guidance for business, residents & volunteering

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British Retail Consortium resources and operational guidance

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UK Hospitality advice on employment and staffing decisions

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REVO: advice for Property Management and Service Providers/ Contractors

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Business Support and Relief

Transport for London

Transport for London is advising the public not to travel unless essential. For live updates, please visit the TfL Website.

HMRC Business Support Helpline

The Government has opened a new HMRC Business Support Helpline: 0800 024 1222

Coronavirus Whatsapp Information Service

To use this free service, simply add 07860 064422 in your phone contacts and then message the word ‘hi’ in a WhatsApp message to get started.

Weekly News Bulletins

With more stringent measures now in place to slow the spread of COVID-19, we remain focused on ensuring public safety and an economically resilient West End.

You can sign up for the bulletins here.

Advice and Guidance

We will continue to monitor the spread of the virus and its implications on our members, so we’re equipped with the latest intelligence to feed into public bodies.

Our FAQs

We’ve had a number of queries come through from members with regards to operations, lobbying and general communications. We will continue to update this section on a regular basis.

Ahead of reopening of the West End of 1 December 2020, we are working closely with the Metropolitan Police Service (Met) and Westminster City Council (WCC) to ensure we have appropriate plans in place across the BID area.

Policing and security

The Met will be re-introducing manned podiums at Piccadilly Circus and Leicester Square to provide a visible deterrence to any would-be offenders. Special Constables, Response Team officers and Dedicated Ward Officers will be available throughout re-opening week, working alongside our private security team to enhance visibility in the area.

Our private security team will  be increasing their area patrols and rearranging their shift patterns to improve their presence on-street to mitigate concerns of low-level crime, anti-social behaviour and crowding.

Heart of London’s dedicated City Inspector resource continue to be on duty 7 days a week. The City Inspectors will be providing guidance to businesses on queue management. They will also work to ensure the public realm spaces remains clutter free, that the required cleansing standards are maintained, and the public highway remains free of unsightly commercial waste. They will continue to engage with illegal street traders, buskers and street gamblers and take the required enforcement action when this is required. Furthermore, the City Inspectors will continue to engage with the more vulnerable members of our community and ensure that they are receiving the required support from Outreach services.

Cleaning

Our cleaning team will introduce further on-street sanitisation cleansing frequencies, disinfecting touchpoints and surfaces. In addition, our rapid janitorial response team will be available to respond to any on-street cleansing concerns.

Westminster City Council have updated their social distancing queuing guidance for retail, which can be found here. Should your business have any specific event plans or product launches that may possibly cause crowds or crowding, or you anticipate larger numbers than can be managed with appropriate social distancing, please email Robin.hibbert@heartoflondonbid.co.uk with as much advance notice as possible to ensure our team are sighted on proposals. You may need to process an event application should the plans have an impact on the public realm.

Please visit the events section for further information.

The Heart of London’s Security team can be reached directly on 07432273388 or 07523901505. In an emergency please call 999 for non-emergency 101.

Should you require any further information, please contact Robin.hibbert@heartoflondonbid.co.uk

Both our City Inspectors and security team continue to patrol the area and we are also working closely with the Met Police. This will enable the team to ensure the continued safety and security of employees where businesses are operating with a skeleton staff and to monitor buildings that have been temporarily closed. If you have any particular security concerns, please contact Rico Pieri, Area Manager rico.pieri@heartoflondonbid.co.uk

Most commercial insurance policies are unlikely to cover pandemics or unspecified notifiable diseases, such as COVID-19. However, the Government has confirmed that the business impact of government advice restricting individuals’ movements – and the knock-on impact on their financial activity – provides sufficient grounds for businesses to claim on their insurance where they have appropriate business interruption cover in place. Please check with your provider to check the terms and conditions of their policy.

Advocacy and lobbying – matt.arnold@heartoflondonbid.co.uk
Operations – robin.hibbert@heartoflondonbid.co.uk
If you would like to sign up to our mailing list, please contact matt.harris@heartoflondonbid.co.uk.
Please also follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn for further updates.

Message from Chief Executive, Ros Morgan

During these uncertain and worrying times we want our members to know that we are here for you and are determined to provide the most up to date information and support via our website, social media channels, weekly COVID-19 conference calls and direct communication with our team members.

Ros Morgan

I am proud of the fact that we have already made headway on our campaigning and lobbying towards government in support of business rates as well as other key asks. We are engaging daily and partnering with wider West End and National bodies to ensure we bring our suggestions and solutions forward in how we can manage and come out of this stronger together.

On behalf of all of us here we wish you all the best and hope that you, your family and friends stay safe.

Ros Morgan
Chief Executive
Heart of London Business Alliance