February 2021 – Chairman’s Blog

posted in: Chairman's Blog | 0

Covid – 19 Pop-up Testing hub

As the days gradually get longer and the coverage of covid vaccinations embraces an ever greater number of residents there is some reason to be more hopeful that better times are on the horizon.  However, effective suppression of the Covid-19 transmission remains vital.  To help reduce the amount of cases Staffordshire County Council are offering free Covid-19 testing for residents without symptoms.  Around 1 in 3 people with the virus do not have any symptoms which means they could be spreading the virus without knowing.  To make it easy for people to attend, a local pop-up testing hub will be at Barlaston Village Hall on Friday 5th February from 2 pm – 4 pm with further dates through the month to be confirmed.  Results of the test are delivered in 30 minutes so if you test positive you can act quickly to self isolate and prevent passing the virus on to others.

If you’d like to attend, you need to book a slot in advance.  You can book a test by visiting https://www.staffordshire.zipporah.co.uk/Track#AndTrace/  Select: BOOK A TEST, scroll to the bottom of the page and select appointment location Stafford – Barlaston Village Halll (near the bottom of the list).  Now select Friday 5th February on the calendar and choose your time slot.

If you have symptoms of Covid=19, PLEASE DO NOT ATTEND.  You will need to book through the national portal at https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test or call 119.

Outdoor Space

There is an expectation that the hard work undertaken on the Green will begin to be realised with the germination of the wild flower seed that has been sown.  It should greatly enhance this attractive part of the village.  The Village Green with its new play facilities adjacent to the car park will be a welcome addition for parents with young families.

One think lockdown has shown us is how great a draw the Downs Bank and the canal towpath are.  There have been a lot of visitors recently wanting to share our village with us.  I know that many villagers have mixed views about this though as restrictions loosen people will have more options and the pressure on us should reduce.


I would again like to pay tribute to the work of David Norman and his Speedwatch team in recording and analysing the traffic flow through the village with particular reference to Meaford Road.  Information is regularly being passed on to the traffic police on the level of speeding and meetings are being held with our County Councillor.  It is frustrating that to date little or no action is being taken on the data supplied but there is a resolve to continue to bring pressure on the relevant agencies.

A programme is also underway to examine now the pedestrian area on Longton Road around the Village Hall could be made less hazardous.

Drainage Issues

The very wet January has again highlighted the need to address drainage issues, particularly on the Village Green and Station Road.  Whilst it has not got direct responsibility the improvement of the situation stands high on the Parish Council website.

Access to support

Leaflets have been distributed in the village shops indicating how support services can be accessed.  The Barlaston Community Group are also updating their Website to reflect the increasing need for a variety of support services and Stewart Jones, Vicar of Barlaston, is always available at the end of a phone (01782 373126).  Please continue to look our for your neighbours and be sensitive to need.

Keep Safe

Gareth Jones