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Richmond Park News: 6 November 2020

Updated: Nov 12, 2020

Richmond Park News: 6 November 2020


Remembrance events will be very different this year, though I encourage all of my constituents to stop for a moment on Sunday and express their gratitude for all those who have sacrificed their lives to protect others.

Kingston residents are invited to join a Commemoration Service livestream via Youtube on Sunday 8 November at 10.55 a.m. Residents are encouraged to lay wreaths at the war memorial in Kingston at any point between the 8th and 15th of November.

Richmond's wreath laying events will be closed to the public, but video recordings will be made available afterwards. Residents are encouraged to lay their wreaths at their local memorial any time, carefully observing social distancing.


I visited Kew Gardens today to meet with the director Richard Deverell. The original guidelines for the new lockdown included the rule that botanical gardens had to remain closed, but I spoke to Matt Hancock, the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care about this on Sunday evening. I emphasised the inconsistency with other guidelines and the importance of Kew Gardens to local residents needing green open spaces for fresh air and exercise during lockdown. I am delighted that the government has now changed the guidelines to enable Kew Gardens to remain open during lockdown, and I encourage you all to pay a visit.

While in Kew I also visited the Original Maids of Honour, one of our most historic local businesses. Owners Kimberley and Darren have been supporting the community, especially the elderly and vulnerable, with delivery of basics such as bread and milk during the pandemic. They will be offering a delivery service during this lockdown and will continue to serve Kew as they have done since 1860.


Funding petition presented to the House of Commons

Earlier this week I presented a petition to the House asking the Government to support Hammersmith and Fulham Council to build a temporary foot and cycle bridge and restore the main bridge. You can see my presentation here:

Richmond Council commits to funding for the ferry

Richmond Council agreed this week to fund a quarter of Hammersmith ferry infrastructure costs. The Government has stated that they expect local stakeholders to contribute. To ensure that Richmond Council is doing everything they can to move this project along, last night they approved funding £375,000 to the cost of the ferry. The remainder should come from the Government, Transport for London and Hammersmith and Fulham Council. TfL has kick-started the procurement process for the ferry service and aims to award a contract within twelve weeks, subject to planning permission on both sides of the river.

You can see more details here:


I am very pleased that the Government has at last agreed to extend the furlough programme until March, ending a period of terrible uncertainty for British businesses and workers. I wish they had taken this step sooner, and saved the jobs of many people who have been made redundant during the delay.

I am extremely disappointed, however, that the Government continues to ignore the nearly three million self-employed people who were excluded from income support schemes. These are hardworking people, many of them in my constituency, who have not received any support for their livelihoods since Covid-19 struck. The furlough extension is an opportunity to right that wrong, but instead the Government continues to heartlessly ignore them. I will keep calling for them to get the same assistance other self-employed people have received.


I just wanted to remind my constituents of the rules of the new lockdown. You may only leave the house now for these reasons:

  • For education

  • For work, if you cannot work from home

  • For exercise and recreation outdoors

  • For all medical reasons, appointments, and to escape harm or injury

  • To shop for food and essentials

  • To provide care for vulnerable people or to volunteer

Anyone who has Covid-19 symptoms (cough, fever, loss of taste or smell) should book a test here and self-isolate until their result comes back. Their household members should also isolate during this time. If the test comes back positive, the whole household should follow the instructions they will be given.

The virus has an incubation period of up to two weeks, and many people who are carrying it do not show symptoms. So it is vital that anyone exposed to a confirmed case of Covid-19 remain in self-isolation for the full two weeks, to ensure they do not unknowingly expose someone else to the virus.

Please wear your mask any time you are in an indoor public space, and be careful to give other people plenty of space. If you have a smart phone and you haven't yet downloaded the NHS Covid-19 app, please consider doing so. This is an important part of the contact tracing programme. Tracing and isolating the virus is our most important line of defense against the pandemic now.

People who are designated as clinically extremely vulnerable are advised to stay at home all times, unless for exercise or doctors’ appointments. Further information for Richmond and Kingston residents can be found in their respective sections of this newsletter, and the updated national guidance can be found here:

Lastly, please make sure you contact your doctor if you have any symptoms that suggest you may have a serious illness. The NHS is worried about cancer being diagnosed late because people are not going to the doctor. Please call your surgery if you have any of the symptoms on this page:


WWT London, the lovely wetland centre in Barnes, will remain open for wintry wetland walks during the lockdown. However, they will be closing their living collections, exhibitions, play areas, shop, café and hides. They will not be able to offer wheelchair or mobility scooters for hire or grain for sale to feed the birds. Toilets and takeaway food and drink will be available. They are temporarily reducing their admission prices to £5 for adults and £2.50 for children for the duration of this lockdown. You can book your place via their website.



As the UK moves into a second lockdown, Richmond Council has asked me to share their news about Council services during this lockdown: