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Gloucestershire Business News

Coronavirus LIVE Updates: The latest news from across Gloucestershire on Tuesday, December 22

The ongoing coronavirus situation is changing by the hour with announcements being made about businesses and services that are being forced to adapt and change.

Punchline is committed to trying to keep you up to date with all the news that matters to you and your business.

Our team will update this story throughout the day, to ensure the latest important developments can be found in one - clickbait free - place.

If you or your business has any news, views or advice to share with the Gloucestershire business community, get in touch with Punchline team at news@moosemarketingandpr.co.uk.

Tuesday, December 22

Update #8211 - 11.21 Borrowing hits new November high

Government borrowing reached record levels once more in November as support during the coronavirus pandemic pushed it to £31.6billion.

The figures from the Office for National Statistics make it the highest November figure and third largest monthly amount since records started in 1993.

Since the start of the financial year in April, borrowing has reached £240.9billion - up £188.6billion on a year ago.

Estimates from the Office for Budget Responsibility put the total for the financial year to March at £372.2billion.

Update #8210 - 08.30 Latest coronavirus figures for the UK and Gloucestershire

The latest data for coronavirus cases and deaths of patients with COVID-19 were released yesterday by the Government's department of health and social care and NHS England.

Updated UK figures show the total number of deaths within 28 days of positive test rose to 67,616 - which includes those in care homes, hospitals and in the community.

This is an increase of 215 on the previous day's figures.

Across the UK, 33,364 people have tested positive for the virus over the last 24 hours and 2,073,511 since the outbreak began.

Latest Public Health England figures show that the total number of cases within the county sits at 10,401 as of Monday afternoon - an increase of 210.

The total number of deaths in Gloucestershire within 28 days of a positive test sits at 560 - a rise of four on the day before.

Cases are split across the following regions:

Gloucester - 2,981 cases (increase of 60)

Cheltenham - 1,900 cases (increase of 29)

Stroud - 1,805 cases (increase of 31)

Tewkesbury - 1,305 cases (increase of 26)

Cotswolds - 1,183 cases (increase of 29)

Forest of Dean - 1,227 cases (increase of 35)

Monday, December 21

Update #8209 - 12.55 Latest on Gloucestershire's mobile testing unit locations

An important part of minimising and managing any future spread of Covid-19 is the speed at which people can be tested and isolation measures put in place, should an outbreak occur.

The mobile testing unit is now available at locations across the county. Click here to see this week's locations below.

SEE MORE 

Update #8208 - 12.22 COVID concerns keep congregations away

Findings by Gloucester-based Ecclesiastical Insurance has found that one in three churchgoers will not attend church this Christmas due to fears about contracting coronavirus.

The survey asked 1,367 churchgoers whether they planned to go to church this Christmas.

While almost two-thirds (61 per cent) said it was important for them to celebrate Christmas events at church, many churchgoers have admitted they will not attend church this festive season.

Michael Angell, church operations director at Ecclesiastical Insurance, said: "It is clear from the findings of these surveys that the shadow of COVID-19 is still with us this festive period, and it can't be ignored as a hurdle for churches to consider."

Update #8207 - 11.57 GO Mobility offering help to reach coronavirus vaccinations

Teams from a Gloucestershire wheelchair accessible vehicle provider are helping some of the most vulnerable people in our communities reach Covid-19 vaccination hubs.

GO Mobility, based at Staverton, are helping care homes, charities and community groups in the county transport people in the top priority groups.

Managing director Richard Caine said: "We recently became aware of a number of local care homes who had been offered the Covid-19 vaccination for all of their residents, but they had real logistical challenges in transporting their residents to the vaccination hubs, particularly those with more severe mobility issues and wheelchair users."

SEE MORE 

Update #8206 - 11.36 Cirencester's new car park to open 'free of charge' over Christmas holidays

Cotswold District Council is opening the new Whiteway Car Park in Cirencester free of charge to the public for seven days over Christmas and New Year.

The car park will be free to use from 7am-7pm between Monday, December 21 and Thursday, December 24 and between Tuesday, December 29 to Thursday, December 31.

Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays are reserved for use by Cirencester Rugby Club. From 4 January 2021 the car park will be for permit holders only.

FIND OUT MORE 

Update #8205 - 10.52 Name companies that have taken furlough money, say MPs

MPs are calling on the UK government to publish a list of companies using the furlough scheme.

It follows a concern from the Commons public accounts committee about "opportunistic fraud" created by the scheme, where furloughed employees are still working while bosses claim the grant.

The committee predicts that this could be happening in between seven and 34 per cent of cases.

Chair of the committee Meg Hillier said: "With the Treasury claiming it can't give even a ballpark figure for the cost of COVID job support until the end of next year, public scrutiny of where taxpayers' money is going is essential." 

Update 8204 - 10.33 Arcadia brand Evans sold to Australian firm for £23m

Administrators of Arcadia Group have announced the sale of fashion brand Evans to City Chic Collective.

The Australian business will acquire the Evans' brand, intellectual property, customer base and inventory. However, administrators Deloitte said the sale does not include the Evans' store network.

Deloitte added: "The process to secure new owners for the other Arcadia Group brands is ongoing. There have been significant expressions of interest for all brands. The Joint Administrators expect to provide a further update in the new year."

Evans sells plus sized clothes for women and in the financial year to August 2020, its website had 19 million visits and generated approximately £23 million of sales. 

Update #8203 - 08.30 Latest coronavirus figures for the UK and Gloucestershire

The latest data for coronavirus cases and deaths of patients with COVID-19 were released yesterday by the Government's department of health and social care and NHS England.

Updated UK figures show the total number of deaths within 28 days of positive test rose to 67,401 - which includes those in care homes, hospitals and in the community.

This is an increase of 326 on the previous day's figures.

Across the UK, 35,928 people have tested positive for the virus over the last 24 hours and 2,040,147 since the outbreak began.

Latest Public Health England figures show that the total number of cases within the county sits at 10,191 as of Sunday afternoon.

The total number of deaths in Gloucestershire within 28 days of a positive test sits at 556.

Cases are split across the following regions:

Gloucester - 2,921 cases

Cheltenham - 1,871 cases

Stroud - 1,774 cases

Tewkesbury - 1,279 cases

Cotswolds - 1,154 cases

Forest of Dean - 1,192 cases

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