Decision details

COVID-19 Emergency Update

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: Yes


The Leader and Promoting South Lakeland Portfolio Holder addressed Members with regard to the COVID-19 pandemic.  He stressed the fact that this was a major crisis demanding a great deal of attention.  He thanked officers for their excellent response to the many new challenges, for example dealing with Government funding, housing the homeless and facilitating virtual meetings.  The Leader asked the Chief Executive to pass on gratitude to the Council’s employees.  He further extended thanks to councillors for their work, for example, within their communities and supporting the vulnerable.  In addition, he thanked the other group leaders for their collaboration, support and collegiality.  The Leader also wished, most importantly to express thanks to the National Health Service (NHS) and care workers for their fantastic work.


The Leader highlighted the Council’s role which was to support and implement Government policy, protecting the health of residents and visitors and offering assistance to businesses.  Collaboration was critical, and the Leader referred to the hard work being carried out together with authorities Cumbria-wide and beyond, district leaders, parishes and the third sector.  He drew particular attention to the Shielding Programme and expressed appreciation for the work being carried out in this regard by Cumbria County Council, the Health, Wellbeing and Financial Resilience Portfolio Holder and officers.  The Leader referred to businesses which were suffering and to the Government grant being administered by the Council, stressing the need for those who had not already applied to take up the opportunity.


The Leader referred to the Government’s request for town centres to re-open and to the work required before June in order to prepare public spaces to facilitate social distancing.  The Economy, Culture and Leisure Portfolio Holder would be leading on this project, as well as on an initiative to help local businesses rebound.


The Leader summarised, highlighting the vital role of local government and thanking his Cabinet colleagues for their critical role.  He pointed out that there was still a lot of work to be carried out and decisions to be taken.  This would not be easy but the Leader stressed that together, we would get through.


The Leader then invited the Chief Executive to provide an update on the use of Kendal Leisure Centre as a Temporary Recovery Centre.  The Chief Executive explained that the Centre had been identified as a recovery centre for the provision of additional medical capacity in response to the COVID-9 emergency, capable of accommodating between 60 and 70 patients.  At the request of the NHS and Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust, the Leisure Centre continued at this time to be a recovery centre.  The Council was, however, in discussion with the NHS on the implications of the recent Government Announcement regarding steps of adjustments to current measures and the potential of re-opening leisure facilities from 4 July.


RESOLVED – That the verbal update be noted.

Publication date: 22/05/2020

Date of decision: 20/05/2020

Decided at meeting: 20/05/2020 - Cabinet

Effective from:

Current call-in Count: 0