Coronavirus COVID-19: Latest updates

Many council services are reduced or disrupted. Check our coronavirus page for the most up-to-date information. Read the latest and sign up for updates.

Guidance for businesses that are reopening

On 25 May, the government announced the easing of lockdown measures in England, allowing non-essential retail to reopen from 15 June as long as they are COVID-19 secure.  

With some exceptions, all shops will be allowed to reopen providing certain conditions are met. It is a legal requirement that all businesses undertake a COVID-19 risk assessment. It is also important that businesses aim to maintain social distancing on their premises of at least 2 metres wherever possible. 

What we’re doing 

The Council has been allocated funding through the Reopening High Streets Safely Fund to implement practical safety measures to help businesses resume trading again. These include things like new signage, street markings and temporary barriers. 

We’re also going to encourage residents and visitors to shop in our town centres through our Shop Safe campaign. There will be regular communications and public information messaging to reassure everyone that these public spaces are being managed safely. 

So far we've given out over 1,000 Shop safe collateral packs to retail businesses. These contain things like floor graphics, queueing tape and stickers to help shops keep customers safe and we've produced a guide for businesses that are reopening with information about how to use the items in their Shop safe packs and where to find help and support.

Business advice surgeries

If you were not able to come along to one of our business advice surgeries held in our town centres and high streets in June, we're holding more until 11 July, between 11am and 2pm. We will be giving out more business collateral packs and offering advice to businesses to help them reopen safely. The surgeries will be held at:

Plumstead - Abery Street car park

Friday 3 July
Friday 10 July

Greenwich - Cutty Sark Gardens

Saturday 4 July
Monday 6 July
Saturday 11 July

Woolwich - Calderwood Street at the junction with Powis Street

Saturday 4 July
Wednesday 8 July
Saturday 11 July

Eltham - Passey Place

Tuesday 7 July

Guidance and information 

The government and other organisations have created comprehensive guidance for businesses and employess as restrictions begin to be lifted. We’ve listed the information we think will be most helpful for businesses. 

Support for businesses 

The coronavirus business support information for all types of businesses in one place. It covers: 

  • funding and support 
  • self-employed people and sole traders 
  • your responsibilities as an employer 
  • what businesses should be closed 

Managing risks at work 

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has published guidance to help you work safely and manage the current risks associated with running your business. It covers how to: 

  • protect people from coronavirus in your workplace 
  • talk to your workers about working safely 
  • carry out a risk assessment including a risk assessment template 

Guidance about using public transport 

The coronavirus transport and travel guidance is government guidance for people using or working in the transport sector.  

The Mayor of London has set out a Streetspace plan to make London’s roads easier for people to maintain social distancing and safer for walking and cycling. Read about what we’re doing to improve streets and maintain social distancing.  

Test and Trace workplace guidance  

The NHS has published workplace guidance about the test and trace service for employers, businesses and workers

There’s also guidance about the COVID-19 tests and testing kits for patients, the public and professional users

Other sources of coronavirus support for businesses 

GOV.UK has published a helpful list of coronavirus support for business from outside government. We’ve also included some more:  

Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) 

All CIEH resources relating to coronavirus - including guidance for food and takeaway businesses 

Food Standards Agency 

Reopening and adapting your food business COVID-19 

British Retail Consortium (BRC) 

BRC Coronavirus Hub  

Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers (Usdaw) 

Coronavirus advice for Usdaw members 

Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) 

Resources for retailers 

Business Companion 

Impartial, government-backed information and guidance