South Ribble Borough Council - COVID 19 Support 

South Ribble Borough Council have recently launched ‘South Ribble Together’ to the public, a hub which will allow the council, with the help and support of key organisations from the public, charitable and voluntary sector, along with local groups, organisations and individuals to support our vulnerable residents in this time of crisis.

As part of this work they have:

  • launched a dedicated service to help and support those in need. People will be asked to call 01772 625 625 or email where the team will deal with the enquiry/case then and there if they can, or will signpost to key organisations who can help.
  • reached out for people to contact us to volunteer with the community recovery effort. Any person or organisation interested in getting involved will be encouraged to contact us on or link in with us on social media
  • created with more information and details about how to get in touch along with a list of FAQs

Tax & Credits- HMRC  

HMRC has a set up a phone helpline to support businesses and self-employed people concerned about not being able to pay their tax due to coronavirus (COVID-19).

The helpline allows any business or self-employed individual who is concerned about paying their tax due to coronavirus to get practical help and advice. Up to 2,000 experienced call handlers are available to support businesses and individuals when needed.

If you run a business or are self-employed and are concerned about paying your tax due to coronavirus, you can call HMRC’s helpline for help and advice: 0800 0159 559. 

Universal Credit 

Special arrangements will be in place for people in receipt of benefits who cannot attend reassessments or jobcentre appointments because they are required to stay at home or are infected by coronavirus. 

Those affected by coronavirus will be able to apply for Universal Credit and can receive up to a month’s advance up front without physically attending a jobcentre. 

To make sure people in work can take the necessary time off to stay at home if they are suffering from coronavirus or to prevent its spread, changes have been made to Statutory Sick Pay and how Universal Credit supports self-employed claimants. All information on what employees can claim can be found on the Government website here. 

For all queries relating to Universal Credit please call: 0800 015 9559. 

Travelling abroad? Relatives abroad?   

I've had some reports of people having travel problems in returning to the UK from abroad. The Foreign and Commonweath Office ( FCO )  has a hotline for the general public:  (+44 ) 0207 008 1500 

Today the FCO has updated it's travel guidance.  It is advised to not travel to foreign countries for at least 30 days unless essential. 

Have bookings with a tour company ?  You can access ABTA's latest coronavirus FAQs on their website here


In light of the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, the Foreign & Commonwealth Office advises against ‘all but essential’ travel to mainland China and now recommends that British Nationals who are able to leave China do so.

Read the full FCO Travel Advice for China. British nationals in China who need consular support should call +86 (0)10 8529 6600 or the FCO in London on: 0207 008 1500.

Educational Settings 

There is a dedicated helpline number for educational settings – please call 0800 046 8687 for any specific question.  Katherine will update any specific advice here

Public Health England has created resource materials that contain public health advice about how you can help stop the spread of viruses, like those that cause coronavirus (COVID-19), by practising good respiratory and hand hygiene. To access, download and share this information, you will need to register for an account which only takes a couple of minutes.

Use e-Bug resources to teach pupils about hygiene.

Coronavirus WhatsApp Updates

The UK Government has launched a GOV.UK Coronavirus Information service on WhatsApp. The service will provide information on topics such as coronavirus prevention and symptoms, the latest number of cases in the UK, advice on staying at home, travel advice and myth busting.

The service will also allow the government to send messages to all opted-in users if required. To use the free GOV.UK Coronavirus Information Service on WhatsApp, simply add 07860 064422 in your phone contacts and then message the word ‘hi’ in a WhatsApp message to get started.

Read for at .GOV HERE