Great Milton website: have your say…

The Parish Council is planning revisions to the Great Milton village website to comply with changes to legislation.
As part of that process the content and navigation of the site will be reviewed.
We have created a completely anonymised survey to gather your views and opinions on the website and would be very grateful if you could take a couple of minutes to complete it.
Link to survey:
The website can be accessed at

Many thanks,

Cllr Steve Harrod
On behalf of Great Milton Parish Council


Volunteers make all the difference in South and Vale

At the start of national volunteers’ week, the leaders of South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse district councils have offered their heartfelt and sincerest thanks to the thousands of volunteers that are helping in their communities.

Within days of lockdown starting, charities and voluntary groups in our districts were helping those in need. As it became clear more support was required hundreds of residents set up informal help groups in their local communities to make sure their most vulnerable and isolated neighbours were able to get help.

They used the powers of social media to recruit other volunteers and to get the message out to those who needed it. They also used more traditional methods to reach people, such as telephone calls, door-knocking and posting home-made leaflets through their neighbours’ doors.

There’s no doubt these local heroes have saved lives in their communities – they have been the backbone of the country’s response to the crisis.

To help coordinate the community response, the district councils set up a community hub, which has helped bring the hundreds of independent groups and individuals into a huge linked network of volunteers responding to requests for help.

Working together with the district councils and others, local volunteer groups have made an enormous difference to people who are having to self-isolate. They’re carrying out tasks that in normal circumstances would normally seem simple such as doing the food shopping or picking up people’s prescriptions.

More than 30 members of staff at the council have been redeployed to work on a community support helpline to support the coordinated effort across the county. So far, the helpline has referred 910 people onto community groups for ongoing support. The district councils have also created a food hub, which has supplied meals for 783 adults and children.

Cllr Emily Smith, Leader of Vale of White Horse District Council said, “I’m extremely proud of the hundreds of local volunteers that have been helping their neighbours and some of our most vulnerable residents. I hope the work that we have been able to do as a council creates a long-lasting legacy of active community groups that support vulnerable and isolated residents far beyond this pandemic to support ever more cohesive and connected communities”

Cllr Sue Cooper, Leader of South Oxfordshire District Council said, “We are so grateful to our local community groups, volunteers and own staff that have stepped up and helped to provide all the extra support. Without them, vulnerable people would have undoubtedly suffered so much more during the pandemic.”

SODC Community Support: change to opening hours

We previously communicated the identified reduction in referrals received directly to our Community Support helpline. This really emphasises the hard work we’ve all collectively accomplished so far to help those most in need throughout our communities. We want to thank you for your continued support.
We’ve recently reviewed our operations with current data trends across the districts. In completion of this, we’ve decided to change our opening hours to reflect those of the shielded helpline operated by central government.

New opening times!
Monday to Saturday – 9am to 6pm
Sunday – Closed

We will continue to review this as we transition into the recovery phase and will follow any future changes government make to their operating hours.
We continue to improve the way we work to ensure that no one is falling through the gaps, so please keeping talking to us and let us know how we can best support your efforts to stay connected with those in need.
If there’s anything we can help with directly, or if you have any questions, please email
Take care and stay safe!
Best Wishes,
South & Vale Community Support Team

Update from SODC

Bank holiday bins
Monday 25 May is the Spring Bank Holiday which means – as usual – there is a change to the waste and recycling collections next week. For details please see our bank holiday collections pages.
*Collections on a Saturday begin at 6am so please put your bins out the night before.

Free webinar for businesses in South and Vale
We’ve partnered with Graham Ballantyne, Director of the UK Business Mentoring Group, to deliver a free webinar on Thursday to help local businesses with their recovery plans. A recording of the session will also be available to view online afterwards.
The webinar will include lots of tips and pointers, along with useful templates, and complementary mentoring sessions.
You can find out more information on the South and Vale Business Support website.

Free online business school
Anybody with a new business, or who is hoping to set one up, can take part in a free Pop-Up business school which will take place online between 15 and 19 June. To find out more and to register visit the Pop-up Business School website.

Recycling centres update
All recycling centres across Oxfordshire are now open again. However, the advice is still to check before travelling to a site as they’re operating at a reduced capacity with new site rules in place and some changes to opening times. You can find out more details on the county councils website.

Parish Council ‘virtual meeting’ Mon 18 May, 7.30pm

If you wish to attend Great Milton Parish Council’s virtual meeting on Monday 18th May, please enter the following joining code into your browser and follow any instructions:

Given reported issues with security on Zoom meetings, please also advise the Chairman that you would like to attend by calling 01844 278068 in advance of the meeting.  A link to the agenda appears below:



Recycling centres to reopen

Oxfordshire’s seven Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRCs) have been shut to waste delivered by the public since 24 March 2020, following Government’s direction that everyone should stay home due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

Since then we have been working with the city and district councils to ensure excellent kerbside collection services have continued, and preparing for full service reopening of the recycling centres. The sites will reopen on Monday 18th May at 8:00am.

All seven sites will be open seven days a week as long as they are not overwhelmed and can operate safely, and will accept all waste materials. Sites will open at 8am and close at 4pm to allow for additional cleaning.

The number of vehicles allowed onto the site will be reduced by approximately 50% to allow for social distancing. This means that queues are highly likely, especially at peak times such as weekends. Traffic marshals will be in place to manage queues, but queuing is not allowed on the public highway.

Residents are therefore being urged only to visit the site if their trip is essential and they cannot safely store their waste at home

Other policy changes in place include:
 – Contactless card payments for DIY waste only
 – Site staff are there for guidance and will not be able to help unload waste from vehicles
 – Only one resident will be allowed out of the vehicle, unless assistance is needed with heavy items, and then 2 people will be permitted
 – For the time being hire vans and trailers will not be allowed access, even if they have a permit.
 – Sites will shut at 4pm promptly and anyone queuing will be asked to return another day. This will allow the site staff the time needed to clear and clean the site thoroughly. Traffic marshals will monitor the queue and warn those who may not reach site by closing time.

In line with Public Health England guidance, residents who are vulnerable, or who are showing symptoms which may indicate coronavirus, should not visit household recycling centres

A full list of FAQs will be available on our website shortly:

Government guidance says that trips to an HWRC should only be made if ‘essential’ – that is if the waste cannot be stored safely without harm to health. The Government guidance states: “It would be reasonable for residents to undertake a journey to a HWRC if the waste or recycling could not be stored safely at home or disposed of through other legitimate routes such as a dedicated collection. By this we mean that the waste/recycling could not be stored on their property without causing a risk of injury, health or harm to the resident or other members of their household or harm to public health and amenity.”

OCC update: Carers ID

Oxfordshire County Council is continuing to support Carers during the current Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic by offering a Carers ID.
The Carer ID scheme is for paid and independent Carers who are providing care and support to youngsters and adults known to OCC Social Care.
The Carer ID is a simple letter of authority which can be presented whilst out and about, should the Carer be challenged.
Contact us at: for further information.

Cancer consultations available via telephone and video

Doctors in Oxfordshire are urging people to get medical advice if they are worried about symptoms of cancer.
A recent national survey suggests getting coronavirus or giving it to their family were among the top reasons that people would not come forward when they have cancer symptoms, along with fears that they could be a burden to the health service.
But NHS staff have worked hard to make sure people can get cancer checks and treatment safely, so there is no need to delay.
Dr Kiren Collison, GP and Clinical Chair of Oxfordshire CCG, said: “We strongly encourage anyone with concerns or worries about their health to contact their GP for advice. If you are worried about any new symptoms, then please get in touch with your surgery.
“We will be able to reassure you or if necessary get you to see a specialist quickly and safely. It is important to remember that the sooner cancer symptoms are picked up and treated, the better.”
Initial telephone consultations or via video mean people do not necessarily need to go to GP surgeries for check-ups, and if they do need to be seen in person then there will be measures in place to keep patients safe. Waiting to get help could have serious consequences for patients and put a greater burden on the NHS in the future.
Dr Shelley Hayles, GP and Planned Care and Cancer Clinical Lead at OCCG, said: “NHS staff here in Oxfordshire have made huge efforts to deal with coronavirus but we are also working hard to ensure patients can get essential services such as cancer checks and urgent surgery safely.
“We are doing all we can to make sure patients receive the life-saving care they need.
“The wishes of patients and their families will always come first, and we have to make sure that people feel safe coming to GP practices and hospitals, but our message is clear: people should seek help as they always would.
“We know that finding cancer early gives us the best chance to cure it, and ignoring potential problems can have serious consequences now or in the future.”
Oxfordshire’s cancer diagnostics and treatment centres are based at the Churchill Hospital, which is a regional centre of excellence, as well as other specialist services in the John Radcliffe and Horton General Hospitals.
Nick Maynard, Cancer Lead at Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said: “We have been working incredibly hard at our Trust to make sure that we can still provide urgent cancer care during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Patient safety is at the heart of everything we do, and we have made every effort to make sure that cancer treatment at our Trust is supported by robust shielding and screening procedures to protect our patients against COVID-19.”
A major public information campaign launched last week to persuade people to contact their GP or 111 if they have urgent care needs and to attend hospital if they are told they should.
Cancers are detected earlier and lives are saved if more people are referred for investigation for checks.