In light of the current Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, please find below some useful information including contacts for local support services & advice, meal deliveries, ideas for home activities, as well as a list of known event cancellations in Thame. Please let us know via firstname.lastname@example.org if you spot something we’ve missed – this page is updated daily.
Use the links in the menu below to navigate this page:
- Council Services & Information
- Local Support Services & Contacts
- Health Support & Prescriptions
- Support For Businesses and Self-Employed
- Food Support, Supermarket Priority Hours & Meal Deliveries
- Financial Support
- Activities For Children
- Activities For Adults
- Event Cancellations & Closures
- Scams to be aware of
- How can I help?
To contact Thame Town Council for any assistance, please email (email@example.com) or call 01844 212833 (this number is monitored during our standard office hours). Please note the Town Council will close for Easter from 5.00pm on Thursday 9 April and will reopen on Tuesday 14 April at 9.00am.
Thame Information Centre is currently closed.
Whilst the Information Centre remains closed, if you have an outstanding parking fine please make payment online at www.councilparking.org/thame/pages/home.aspx if possible.
- Thame Market – This will remain open unless the Government advise against trade. The market will operate with a reduced number of stalls & in line with Government guidance. For the latest updates, visit the Thame Tuesday Charter Market Facebook page
- Play areas and skate park – Please remember that during the pandemic all play areas remain closed and safety inspections of the equipment are not being undertaken. Unfortunately, despite notices informing members of the public the skate park is closed the Community Neighbourhood Police team report it is still being used and groups of people are gathering there. It has therefore been necessary to erect barriers around the site to prevent entrance. Please respect the guidance that is being given to keep us all safe.
- Parks & Public Open Spaces – Parks and Public Open Spaces are open for daily exercise but users are asked not to linger, sit or congregate.The Police are patrolling the Public Open Spaces, Parks, Skate Park and Play Areas around the Town and can enforce the law regarding gatherings and non-compliance in relation to social distancing. The Maintenance Team are continuing to litter pick in the parks and open spaces and also grass cutting. These services are under constant review and being performed in line with Government guidance for the safety of the public and Town Council staff. Read the Government’s advice on using open spaces.
- General services – our phone lines remain open during office hours and all staff are working from home, with regular communication with each other and Councillors via phone, email and video conferencing.
- Council Meetings – New Government legislation now allows Councils to meet online and the National Association of Local Councils have issued guidance on how to hold virtual meetings. Please keep up to date with future Council meeting dates by visiting our website, the Town Council weekly newsletter and social media.
- Grants – applications for the annual grant scheme which were due to open on 30 March 2020 have been postponed.
The Town Mayor, Cllr Ann Midwinter, has issued a message for the residents of Thame, view the video below (a transcript of the video can be download below the video):
Good Morning, A message from the Mayor asking you all to keep safe. Check for update on https://www.thametowncouncil.gov.uk/2020/03/16/coronavirus/
Posted by Thame Town Council on Tuesday, 24 March 2020
For the latest information from SODC, please go to: southoxon.gov.uk/covid19
- Waste collections (recycling, food & general waste) will continue, however due to staff shortages some bins may not be collected on your scheduled collection day. Please leave any uncollected bins out for three working days (including weekends). Kerbside service collections of small electrical items, batteries and textiles for recycling have been suspended. Please do not put batteries in your bins as there is a risk of fire to bin trucks.
- A reminder that due to the Easter bank holiday, your bin collection date will be a day later on the week commencing 13 April 2020.
- Bulky waste collections have been suspended until further notice and SODC will not be taking on new customers for garden waste collections.
- Council Tax – If you are having any difficulty paying your council tax for any reason, including if you have lost work or now have a reduced income due to the coronavirus, contact SODC as soon as possible on 0345 302 2313 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. SODC are awaiting details of the Government’s £500m hardship fund, which is likely to provide support for people on an existing Council Tax Reduction scheme, and will make adjustments to begin helping people when more information is available.
- Thame Leisure Centre is closed until further notice.
- Car parks – All charges are suspended until 1 June and during this time you do not have to display a ticket.
- Support – Support line (01235 422600) for anyone who is not considered high risk and does not have a support network around them to help.
For the latest information from OCC, please go to: https://www.oxfordshire.gov.uk/.
- Support – If you or someone you know has been identified as extremely vulnerable by the NHS (“shielded group”) and have no support network, please contact the dedicated team on 01865 897820 or email email@example.com.
- Adult Social Care – if you know of a vulnerable person who is not in the “shielded group” and you are concerned for their mental or physical welfare, call 0345 050 7666 (Mon – Thurs 8:30am-5pm, Friday 8:30am-4pm) or 0800 833 408 (out of hours).
- Financial Support (for community groups) – go to the Financial Support section of this page for information on OCC’s Councillor Priority Fund.
- Volunteer support / opportunities – Oxfordshire All In (https://www.oxfordshireallin.org/) is the go-to volunteer website for Oxfordshire. It allows groups and individual to sign up, but most importantly, it has an interactive map that allows vulnerable residents to find local support.
The Town Council will do all it can to support its local community and businesses, so please do contact us on the above information if you need help.
“Hello! If you are self-isolating, I can help” leaflets – download a help request leaflet (JPEG) to print at home.
Below is a list of useful numbers and local support services, and make sure to check out the links to the Useful and Emergency Contacts pages too.
Age UK Oxfordshire – 01865 411 288 – new telephone support service including a friendly, regular weekly call to see how people are and offer advice if needed.
Love Thame Helpers Line – 0330 022 1441 – Local telephone support line available for anyone needing a chat, support or help with shopping or prescriptions collections. The Love Thame Helpers have a map of local coordinators and will be able to put you in contact with someone who can help. If you are on Facebook and would like to help, join the group: www.facebook.com/groups/lovethamehelpers. If you would like to help with the phone line, email firstname.lastname@example.org giving your name and contact number.
Oxfordshire All In / Oxfordshire Together – if you are not in a high risk category but still in need of support, there are a number of initiatives taking place across the county. You can visit Oxfordshire All In or Oxford Together for more information on community support near you.
Spiritual / Prayer Support
- Barley Hill Church – https://www.barleyhillchurch.org.uk. Contact email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
- Cornerstone Thame – http://cornerstonethame.org/
- Grace Church Thame – https://www.gracechurchthame.org.uk/home
- St Mary’s Church Thame – http://stmarysthame.org.uk. Contact: Mike@stmarysthame.org.uk, Graham@stmarysthame.org.uk or Office@stmarysthame.org.uk
- St Joseph’s Catholic Church – https://www.facebook.com/saintjosephsthame/
Thame Foodbank & Community Larder – If you need support from the Foodbank or Community Larder, or would like to volunteer, please call 0300 201 0212 or go to www.sharinglifetrust.org. For more info, go to the Food Support section of this page.
Thame Good Neighbour Scheme – 07913 713 452 – www.thamegns.org. This scheme exists to help residents of Thame with tasks such as shopping and prescription collection. You will need to register with TGNS first to receive help or volunteer. TGNS is currently directing new requests to the Love Thame Helpers.
Looking after yourself
These are unprecedented times and it is normal to feel anxious, stressed or worried, but it is important to take care of yourself during this time. Access free resources & virtual classes online, see: www.thamerewardsclub.com/corona-virus-shopping-thame. To keep children entertained: https://oxon.ankle-biters.co.uk/children-entertained-coronavirus/. Exercise videos for the elderly – Generation Games (part of Age UK Oxfordshire) have uploaded exercise videos specifically for the elderly – https://generationgames.org.uk/
Coronavirus (Covid-19) symptoms?
Follow government guidance on isolation and social distancing
and observe good personal hygiene at all times. DO NOT attend your doctor’s surgery FOR ANY REASON if you have a temperature, a persistent cough or flu-like symptoms. Get help online at
https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19 ONLY call 111 if you cannot get help online.
Other medical conditions?
GP surgeries are temporarily suspending all non-urgent services. DO NOT CONTACT YOUR GP UNLESS IT IS ESSENTIAL TO DO SO. Hospitals have suspended routine operations and referrals, as well as many outpatient appointments, for at least 3 months. Possible cancer referrals will continue. Please do not call the surgery about an outstanding referral unless your condition has deteriorated. Necessary consultation will take place online or by telephone or video link:
- Rycote Practice: www.therycotepractice.co.uk/appointments-clinics/appointment-types/econsult/
- Unity Health: In the first instance use the AskNHS app, or if this is not possible, please call reception.
DO NOT ORDER MEDICATION MORE THAN 2 WEEKS BEFORE YOU RUN OUT.
The Love Thame Helpers have created a Google Form to request prescription collection and delivery requests for Boots High Street or East Street pharmacies. The delivery team have been DBS checked and have strict protocols to manage the deliveries which protect them and you. If your prescription is required urgently please call 0330 022 1441.
01844 261066 or www.therycotepractice.co.uk
Use one of the following options:
- Post your prescription form by mail
- Send an administrative eConsult (see link above)
- Order via online access account (to set this up if not already registered, download form www.therycotepractice.co.uk/appointments-clinics/online-services-2/patient-access or ask for one to be e-mailed or posted to you)
- By telephone IF YOU CAN’T ACCESS OTHER OPTIONS.
01844 212553 or www.unity-health.co.uk
Use online access. If you do not already have online access, call reception and they can arrange this. No access to internet? Call reception.
DO NOT attend your GP practice – all prescriptions will be sent to your nominated Pharmacy -inform your GP practice which pharmacy you would like this sent to. (Note: Unity Health will automatically send to Boots High Street unless you told otherwise). If you choose to use Boots then you can register for their text alert service. You will receive a text when your prescription is ready in-store so that you do not have to risk attending the pharmacy to find it is not yet ready.
Prescription Delivery to your home?
- The following online services allow you to order repeat prescriptions directly without being registered with online services (these are only available to Rycote Practice patients at present):
- JMW Vicary Pharmacy, Haddenham, also deliver. They will telephone you to prepay (where relevant) and then arrange a delivery to your door. 01844 291 960, www.jmwvicary.co.uk
- If you have been advised to self-isolate and need help collecting a prescription, contact the Love Thame Helpers phone line on 0330 022 1441. If someone is collecting your prescription for you, they will need your full name, address, postcode and whether you are exempt from payment.
Other health support
- Defibrillators – download ‘Save a Life’ app to find your nearest defibrillators.
- For Carers – locally based ‘Maud & Mum’ blog have put together a guide for Carers: https://maudandmum.com/carers-versus-covid-19/
- Antenatal Support – the Daisy Foundation Thame has offered free support and advice for any expectant parents – https://www.facebook.com/DaisyFoundationThame
- Hospital visits – to protect patients and staff, Oxford University Hospitals have announced that from 23 March 2020 no visitors will be allowed into hospital, except:
- Maternity – 1 birth partner only (no children)
- Paediatrics – 1 parent/guardian only (no siblings)
- Patients at end of life – one visitor per patient to spend time with their loved one
- Advocates / visitors who are required to make decisions on behalf of patients who do not have the capacity to make decisions for themselves.
- Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust are suspending the Community Assessment and Treatment Service (CATS) at the Thame hospital. The Ultrasound Service At Thame Community Hub is continuing but it is a slightly reduced service. A full list of the changes can be found at: https://www.buckshealthcare.nhs.uk/coronavirus/public-information-covid_19.htm
- Sign for the Town Council’s Business Newsletter for updates – www.thametowncouncil.gov.uk/newsletter-sign-up
- South & Vale Business Support – https://www.svbs.co.uk/coronavirus-guidance-and-support/
- SODC’s Economic Development Team – 01235 422208 or email@example.com
- Self-employed helpline – call 0300 456 3565 for advice from HMRC on tax and benefits assistance
- Government grants and support – https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses
- Vacancies in South Oxfordshire – https://www.svbs.co.uk/vacancies/
If you would like to help the Foodbank in Thame, you can download the Foodbank app to your phone, and select ‘Sharing Life Trust’ to see the current list of needed items locally. If you need support from the Foodbank or would like to volunteer, please call 0300 201 0212 or 07541 299010, or go to www.sharinglifetrust.org/foodbank.
Sharing Life Trust have launched a Community Larder for Thame. This will provide a way to access staple food, reduce food waste and improve the well-being of residents. Membership is currently free and home delivery is currently being offered. For more information about the Community Larder, please visit the Sharing Life trust website. After the Covid-19 emergency, the Community Larder will operate as a drop-in cafe at Christchurch.
Can you help? Sharing Life Trust, who run the Foodbank and Community Larder in Thame, need volunteers to help run the schemes as many of their original volunteers are currently self-isolating.
Supermarket Priority Shopping Hours
In Thame the following supermarkets are offering selected hours for the elderly, vulnerable and NHS workers:
- Sainsbury’s – Monday, Wednesday and Friday 8am-9am. NHS and social care workers have access 30 minutes before store opening each Monday – Saturday (with NHS ID).
- Waitrose – Monday-Saturday 7:30am-8:30am, and Sundays 10am-11am. Daily essentials kept aside for NHS workers (ask staff) and priority at tills.
- Co-Op – Monday-Saturday 8am-9am, and Sunday 10am-11am
View the list of other supermarkets here & their hours for the elderly and vulnerable. Where possible try to use delivery services. If you cannot, Supermarket opening hours may change, please check before you travel to shop. Supermarkets are also starting to limit the number of people allowed into their stores at one time.
There are lots of businesses locally who are offering a delivery service from their restaurants, cafes and butchers. Thame Rewards Club has posted a handy guide of the known businesses at: https://www.thamerewardsclub.com/corona-virus-shopping-thame
- Sport England have announced £195m to support sports clubs and organisations who are experiencing financial hardship or have ceased operation – https://www.sportengland.org/news/195-million-package-help-sport-and-physical-activity-through-coronavirus
- Hardship Fund – the Government has announced £500m to provide council tax relief to vulnerable people and households to help those affected most by coronavirus. Find out more at: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/government-confirms-500-million-hardship-fund-will-provide-council-tax-relief-for-vulnerable-households.
- Help Musicians – Coronavirus Financial Hardship Fund: https://www.helpmusicians.org.uk/news/latest-news/help-musicians-launches-5m-coronavirus-financial-hardship-fu?
- John Lewis Partnership – Community Support Fund: https://waitrose.pressarea.com/pressrelease/details/78/NEWS_13/12169
- Oxfordshire County Council: Councillor Priority Fund – Applications are open, and Community Volunteer Groups may be eligible to apply for financial help with equipment and printing. Speak to your local County Councillor in the first instance.
All schools are now closed except for children of ‘key workers’ where no other childcare is available. Each school will offer their own arrangements for this as well as online resources and facilities, so for the latest information please check their websites below. Parent-mail / newsletters will the main way in which the school communicates with its parents so check your emails too.
- Barley Hill Primary School – www.barley-hill.oxon.sch.uk
- John Hampden Primary School – www.john-hampden.oxon.sch.uk
- Lord Williams’s School – www.lordwilliams.oxon.sch.uk
- St Joseph’s Primary School – www.st-josephs.oxon.sch.uk
Ideas for School at Home
- Home Learning Resources for KS1 and KS2 – https://thirdspacelearning.com/blog/home-learning-resources/
- P.E. Classes with Joe Wicks (The Body Coach) – Monday to Friday at 9am on YouTube – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCAxW1XT0iEJo0TYlRfn6rYQ
- Oxford Owl – English, Reading and Maths activities – https://home.oxfordowl.co.uk/
- Check out Little Ankle Biters comprehensive list of ideas of online and offline activities to keep little ones busy and stay healthy – https://oxon.ankle-biters.co.uk/children-entertained-coronavirus/
- Thame Youth Projects ‘Vingle’ (Virtual Mingle) every Tuesday and Thursday at 3pm. Access through the Zoom App (free to download on all devices) and visit www.facebook.com/thameyouthcafe
- Create a rainbow to stick in your window for others to spot whilst on a walk, or why not colour in this brilliant graphic created by local Creation Station thanking our NHS & Key Workers?
- Grow sunflowers outside your front door with your neighbours and see who can grow the tallest! (Remember to keep 2m from others at all times)
- Write notes and colour pictures for local nursing homes
- Indoor Explorer – ideas for cooking, writing, games and advice on screen-time and routines for children and teenagers at home – https://indoorexplorers.com/
- Free online art lessons (Wild Free and Crafty) – youtube.com/c/wildfreeandcrafty
- Mindfulness for children and teens – https://biglifejournal-uk.co.uk/blogs/blog/mindfulness-resources-children-teens
- Wellness with Carrie Messmore (local) – regular free workouts and weekly meditations – https://www.facebook.com/groups/735925613558316
- Mindfulness Challenge with Sandra Zumba Thame – https://www.facebook.com/groups/234577934245319/
- Great British Home Chorus – a new initiative by Gareth Malone. This ambitious digital music project will bring together amateur and professional performers from around the UK. Register https://decca.com/greatbritishhomechorus/
- Learn a new skill – for ideas visit https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/deals/deals-hunter/2020/01/free-ways-to-learn-new-skills/
- Exercise at home including strengthening activities and workout videos – visit the NHS website for guidelines: https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/exercise/
- Learn a new language – https://www.duolingo.com/
- Take a virtual museum tour – https://people.com/travel/stuck-at-home-these-12-famous-museums-offer-virtual-tours-you-can-take-on-your-couch/
The Town Council has been made aware that the following events in Thame have been cancelled or postponed:
- 17 March – Thame Town Council’s Planning & Environment Committee and Neighbourhood Plan Continuity Committee
- 20 March – Thame Comedy Review at Thame Cricket Club
- 22 March – Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea at the Guide HQ
- 24 March – Annual Town Meeting (postponed)
- 31 March – Thame Town Council’s Planning & Environment Committee
- 3 April – Mayor’s Charity Dinner
- 3-5 April – World Village Market
- 4 April – Councillor Drop-In
- 7 April – Thame Town Council’s Community, Leisure & Recreation Committee
- 14 April – Thame Town Council’s Policy & Resources Committee
- 18 April – Thame Tidy
- 18 April – Thame Concert Band presents Heroes
- 3 May – Music in the Park
- 8-10 May – VE Day Celebrations
- 30 May – Taste of Thame
- 7 June – Thame History Festival
- 13 June – Thame Carnival
- 28 June – Thame 10k (new date: Sunday 6 September 2020)
- 11 July – Thame Town Music Festival
All Thame Players productions and performances from March to June have been cancelled.
Please be advised that Thame Museum, Thame & District Day Centre and Thame Youth Cafe are closed.
Unfortunately Trading Standards have reported that there are currently various scams circulating relating to the Coronavirus.
Criminals are targeting individuals as well as industries. In common with most other crisis situations, criminals are using emails, text messages, social media posts, online advertisements and phone calls to defraud their unsuspecting victims.
The following are known scams:
- Emails from doctors claiming to have a cure or vaccine
- Emails offering a Covid-19 Tax Refund – HMRC will never advise you of a tax refund in this way
- Online adverts for protective masks and sanitiser gels, and online appeals from fake charities
- Door-to-door salespersons offering Coronavirus tests
- Offers for help with shopping from people you do not know and where they request your bank card / cash
- Fake information / news on websites and social media
- Click on links in emails, especially ones that look too good to be true or where you do not know the sender
- Accept offers of help from strangers – always ask family, friends or a known organisation/channel to arrange help
- Give your bank card, details or cash to anyone you do not know
- Order products from unofficial websites – always use reputable brands and retailers
If you become aware or a victim of a scam, please report it to Citizens Advice – https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/
For the latest information use reliable and official sources such as the Government Official website and the NHS on the links below:
- Join the Love Thame Helpers Facebook Group, to assist with local requests for support: www.facebook.com/groups/lovethamehelpers
- Volunteer with Thame’s Foodbank and Community Larder, both run by Sharing Life Trust: www.sharinglifetrust.org
- Return loaned hospital equipment that you no longer use to Oxfordshire NRS Healthcare. The following items are urgently needed (please make sure they have an NRS Sticker on which includes a barcode): chairs, beds, wheeled commodes, mattresses, any electrical items, bed rails, walking & toilet frames, telecare items and slings. If you would like to hand back some equipment and would like to arrange a collection, please call NRS Healthcare on 01869 225 420 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Date posted: Monday 16 March 2020
Updated: Thursday 9 April 2020