On Tuesday the 22nd of September Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that pubs, restaurants and hospitality venues will have to close by 22.00 BST in order to help combat the rise in Covid-19 cases.
In response to the new restrictions and effective immediately we will be suspending our normal service until further notice.
From Saturday the 26th of September we will be operating an 'on-call' service between 8pm and 11pm every Saturday night. This means that we will respond to radio and phone calls for assistance directly from our homes. We are confident that we can respond to any request for assistance within 10 minutes in the Cheltenham area. All of the resources available to us on a normal shift will be available to the on-call response team. Between 8pm and 11pm we will be monitoring radio communications between CCTV, the police and venues in order to remain aware in real time as to the situation on the ground and we will respond where and when required.
Over the past few weeks we have seen our workload drop from an average of 12 jobs every shift in pre-Covid-19 times to 1 job every 3 shifts. This we feel is due to reduced footfall in the night-time economy and earlier closing times. It is too early to say how the new restrictions will change the dynamic in the town centre but we will be ready to respond to any eventuality.
Cheltenham Guardians Operations Director Terry Howard said: "With new University of Gloucestershire students in town it is important that we retain the capability to respond to requests for assistance from both the police and the public. I am pleased that we can still maintain a presence in the night-time economy and continue to serve our community.
"We will continue to work closely with our strategic partners Gloucestershire Constabulary, Cheltenham Borough Council and town centre venues in order to ensure a specialised safeguarding and welfare responsive element remains available".
If you would like further information about our response to the coronavirus please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.