Update from council leader - 27 October

Front of Time Square building, location of Bracknell Forest Council

Cllr Paul Bettison, OBE, Leader of Bracknell Forest Council, said:

Schoolchildren are now halfway through their half term holidays, receiving a well-deserved break. So, there will be many families taking the opportunity to travel abroad. From last Sunday, the rules on COVID-19 testing for people arriving in the UK have changed. It is important that we all know what that means for residents hoping to travel overseas.

As the children are on half term and receiving a well-deserved break, many families will be taking the opportunity to travel abroad. From last Sunday, the rules on COVID-19 testing for people arriving in the UK have changed.

If you are fully vaccinated – meaning you’ve had two doses of the vaccine – that means the following when travelling back from non red list countries:

  • when arriving back in England, you can take a lateral flow test on or before day 2 of your arrival back into the UK
  • previously this had to be a PCR test
  • these lateral flow tests must be booked through private providers, not through our testing site at One Lexicon or our mobile community collect sites

These changes will make travel cheaper and easier for fully vaccinated residents.

If you have not yet had two doses of the vaccine, and wish to travel to non red list countries, that means:

  • you must take a pre-departure test
  • you must take a PCR test on day 2 and day 8 of your vacation
  • you must complete 10 days self-isolation upon your return (with the option of a test to release on day 5)

There are still opportunities to take up the offer of the COVID-19 vaccine for those who have not had their first or second dose. These can be booked via NHS.UK. Booster jabs are also available to those over 50, or over 16 with health conditions that put them at high risk from COVID-19, who had their second dose 6 months ago. You will be contacted when you are eligible and informed of how to book your appointment.

Anyone seeking more information on foreign travel, should visit the government website giving individual advice for each country.

Those who are not travelling will be able to make the most of the wonderful parks and woodlands in the borough. Meeting up with friends and family in these lovely outdoor spaces is also safer than meeting indoors.

At the end of the week people will be celebrating Halloween. We ask residents to be considerate during this time and respect those who do not wish to take part. There are activities in the town centre including a Halloween Express train. So, a lot of fun can still be had in this very borough.

Whatever you are doing, I hope you all have a fun half term.