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A morning round-up of cancellations, changes and closures and ways people in Petersfield are supporting each other during the coronavirus outbreak.

Produced by the team at Petersfield Community Radio. Contact 01730 555 500 or email team@petersfieldradio.uk

Nina’s gift stones

In today’s programme, Nina Vennis explains how she’s been decorating stones to cheer-up people around Langrish as she settles into a new routine with her school closed.

Nina’s paints

Information transcript

WHAT’S OFF …

For the last six months, on the P pod, we’ve been running an informative What’s On guide … sadly, our daily bulletins are almost exclusively limited to what’s off. And, as Jimmy Cricket was wont to say, c’mere, there’s more …

The Edward Thomas Fellowship has rescheduled its annual walk in the poet’s honour to Sunday, October 4, one day after the anniversary of the unveiling of the memorial stone on the Ashford Hangers in 1937. It has also cancelled this year’s Edward Thomas Study Day.

The Petersfield Society has cancelled tonight’s [Monday night] Community Forum meeting on Climate Action.

If you were planning to attend an event in the next few weeks there’s a very good chance it’s been postponed or cancelled, so check our events guide at petersfieldradio.uk to see if it’s on or off.

CLOSURES

East Hampshire District Council’s offices at Penns Place will be shut to the public indefinitely from today. The council outreach offices in Alton and Bordon have also been closed. If you’d normally go to Penns Place in person the council wants you to contact them 01730 266551 or via easthants.gov.uk.

All formal council meetings have also been cancelled, with decision-making powers transferred to officers and the Leader, Cllr Richard Millard. While EHDC offices are closed, staff are still working as hard as ever and can still be contacted.

TSB Petersfield will be shut this week. Branches in Alton, Chichester and Portsmouth are open. Please refer to the TSB website for details on how you can access funds and pay your bills  If you have any concerns about how you can access your TSB account please call the Chichester branch on 01243 782316

One Tree Books has closed its doors until further notice but Tim, Sally and the team are still in there, beavering away so you can order books from them by phone, or online. They can send your books by post or, if you ring ahead or knock on the door you can still collect orders from the shop. There’s more including regular updates on their website at onetreebooks.com or you can ring them on 01730 261199.

Petersfield library is now closed until further notice. All overdue fees are now frozen, and if your book’s not due to be returned yet then don’t worry, there’ll be no fees when it reaches the return-by date. You can still borrow electronic books from their expanded range.

The Watercress Line has now closed until the end of May, so sadly there will be no ‘days out with Thomas the Tank Engine this Easter, but it is hopeful of holding the event in August. I’m steaming about that news …

Carphone Warehouse will close on Friday, April 3. The chain’s regional manager told us three staff are affected and he’s working to find redeployment for them or help with finding new employment. The closure is not connected to coronavirus, but is part of a national closure of all standalone Carphone Warehouse stores.

The popular Weald and Download Living Museum, in Singleton, has closed all its buildings, although it is working hard to keep the 40-acre site accessible so the local community has a place to relax and refresh, while still following the Government’s social distancing guidance.

Petersfield Framing, on the Buriton Business Park, is reducing its opening hours. It will henceforth be open by appointment only from 9am to 1pm, Monday to Friday. Call 01730 269926 to arrange an appointment to drop off or collect picture framing orders.

In Rams Walk, both Between The Lines and M&Co announced on Sunday that they will now be closed until further notice.

Queen Elizabeth Country Park remains open to local visitors, but all its car parks are closed and park officials encourage you to find areas where you can follow the government guidance on social distancing.

A reminder that Citizens Advice offices across East Hampshire, are closed until further notice – but the team service remains open by telephone and online. The Citizen’s Advice line is 0300 330 90 28 or visit citizensadvice.org.uk.

Petersfield Post Office remains closed until further notice and you use the facilities in Froxfield or Harting instead.

SUPERMARKET NEWS

Tesco is prioritising a browsing hour before checkouts open for NHS workers on Sundays, giving them dedicated time to shop for their essentials. Given our local store is not a 24-hour mega-market, maybe they could do the same throughout the week here?

Waitrose is turning the first hour of opening into a priority period for the elderly, vulnerable and those who look after them. It is suspending its complimentary coffee facilities for myWaitrose members and sales of many in-demand products will be capped. Some stores across the country will close earlier than usual but there’s no sign yet that this will affect the Rams Walk outlet. 

Lidl has reassured customers that it holds sufficient stocks and is increasing supplies to stores where necessary. It is, however, limiting the sales of some items to no more than 4 per purchase so that availability is managed for everyone. Mrs B was there on Saturday and was restricted to just one meat product … Dave/I told her she should have asked for a buffalo!

There’s a limit of two items of any kind per customer at The Bran Tub on Lavant Street – that’s to ensure everyone can get their fair share of their products.

And also on Lavant Street, Mark at the Domestic Appliance Repair Centre says if something in your house has broken and you need an urgent repair, drop it off at the Tile Shop and give him a call. Mark’s mobile number is on the repair centre door.

If you are tempted to buy more than you realistically need, don’t. What might sit in your cupboard or freezer for months could be essential for somebody else. Yes, I’m talking about you, there, with a trolley full of mint imperials!

ELSEWHERE AROUND PETERSFIELD

McDonalds is closed from today. The fast food outlet was offering drive-thru and collection with free drinks for emergency workers but the entire operation is shuttered from this morning. 

Caffe Nero is doing free coffee, tea or hot chocolate to you if you’re a member of medical staff and looking after us – it’s their way to thank you for your incredible hard work – just take your medical ID along with you.

Morning Prayer from St Peter’s Church was live streamed on Facebook yesterday. The Church is planning further digital worship possibilities via its website, Facebook and YouTube – and we’ll be hearing from the vicar Will Hughes in Wednesday’s Morning Update to find out how St Peter’s is connecting with its congregation during the pandemic.

The Grange Surgery asks that you don’t go to the surgery UNLESS you’ve been advised to attend an appointment.

And, does anybody know of a deserving local children’s charity or care centre which would welcome an eggstraordinary gesture? Aspire Coaching’s Nigel Gardner – who does such great work with the kids in our communities – has a large number of Easter Eggs to give to a worthy cause. They were bought as presents for children attending Aspire’s sports courses but with the schools closed he wants to give them a good home. Contact info@aspirecoaching.org.uk if you know of somebody who deserves them …

NOSEBAG NEWS

Following last week’s Government edict shutting pubs and restaurants, many in the area are continuing – or now offering – a take-away service …

The Malabon Restaurant in Dragon Street, for example, already offered a take-away service but can now accept card payments over the phone. That’s my dinner sorted then … call 01730 265493 and tell them Dave Bowers sent you …

As is the Paradise Balti House on Lavant Street. The team there is operating the shop as a takeaway business now – but the full menu 

Josie’s is now taking phone orders for collection, call 07394 506 801.

Need cheering up? Mooka Gelato, in Folly Market, has 500ml and 3ltr boxes of  locally made gelato and sorbets for collection or delivery. Call 07748 700 937.

As we said at the top of this piece an unprecedented number of establishments are now offering a takeaway or delivery service, in some cases just to survive. Let’s do what we can to support them too. If you are doing so please let us know on 01730 5 55 500 or email pod@theppod.uk

COMMUNITY SUPPORT

A group of senior players, coaches and club members from Petersfield Rugby Club have volunteered to provide whatever help they can to the community, anything from dog walking to putting the rubbish bins out and collecting prescriptions. Their services are free and they’re offering their time to help – you can get in touch with them on 01730 264588. Trying to help … that should be called

 reminder that the Petersfield Coronavirus Community Support network has been established to connect volunteers with people who may need assistance through self-isolation. You can reach the group by phone – 07392 021 920, by email at petersfieldcoronacommunity@gmail.com, or search for Petersfield Corona Virus Help Network.

CAN YOU HELP?

If you’re available to help those less fortunate than yourself, some organisations need your help. For example …

The Petersfield Food Bank needs more bars of soap, toiletries and small bags of sugar. If you have some you can donate, please drop them off at the Methodist Church on Station Road or at St Mary’s Church in Sheet.

The Half Moon pub, also in Sheet, is donating all its food to the Petersfield Food Bank … well done Colin.

There’s some happy news from Butser Ancient Farm, where not only have they welcomed their first lambs of the season but, after an ultrasound scan, their rare breed English goats, Bella and Sorrel, were found to be pregnant, possibly with twins! 

All being well they’re expecting the patter of tiny hooves at the end of June. And we’ll have the first exclusive interview with the proud parents exclusively in a new show we’re working on right now – it’s called Britain’s Goat Talent.

And here’s a little tale that heartened us no end. Bridget Wilkie posted online about Carol, a till assistant in Marks & Spencer, who showed such care and kindness to an elderly gentleman by the name of James, who goes in each day. They’d even kept him two tins of his favourite chicken soup, as it had sold out the previous day. Bridget said Carol’s wonderful manner with him almost brought her to tears. C’mon Petersfield, let’s all be more Carol. And James, stay at home, sir – somebody will get your soups for you.

TRAVEL NEWS

From today, South Western Railway is running just one fast train and one slow train every hour in each direction on the Portsmouth to Waterloo line. 

It’s for essential travel only and is a reduced service because so many of their teams are at home in self-isolation.

If you have to go to London this morning – the fast trains are at 0649 and 0747.

If you must get to Portsmouth the trains go at 0711 and 0806.

Full details at southwesternrailway.com or nationalrail.co.uk

Stagecoach Buses is now running to a school holiday timetable so make sure you check before travelling… and they’d like you to use contactless payment if you can.

Hampshire County Council says free bus passes can be used at any time, not just after 9.30am.

WEATHER

Cold at first but dry all day with loads of sunshine and feeling rather pleasant if you can stay out of the East wind. Temperatures up to ten degrees after lunch and another cold one tonight.