IT is now several weeks since the restrictions brought in across Greater Manchester earlier this summer were eased across the borough.

At the time of writing, while it is encouraging that our infection rates remain low in comparison to other areas, we are continuing to warn against complacency and would like to thank all residents who are following public health guidelines.

We have seen several examples during the pandemic of other local authorities having to deal with a spike in cases, including neighbouring areas.

I know that many felt frustrated when under the tighter restrictions and it is important we make a collective effort to not be in a position where we may have to return.

We are reminding everyone to keep the three Ws at the forefront of their minds: wash your hands, wear a face covering and watch your distance.

Our testing centre is now up and running and available to residents who have symptoms with results coming back within 72 hours. The facility includes mobile testing units so that officers can travel to different areas of the borough if required.

It has been encouraging to see our schools return in the last week and I must acknowledge the fantastic work undertaken by council staff and workers across our education sector.

A lot of effort has gone on behind the scenes to ensure pupils, teachers and all staff at our schools feel reassured that they are returning to a safe environment.

We recently approved plans that will see those that litter or fly-tip hit with larger fines. It’s a move we were very happy to introduce as part of our ambitions to be a litter-free borough by 2030.

We estimate that £4m is spent taking litter off our streets, parks and greenspaces each year and we know it’s an issue that a vast majority of residents feel very strongly about.

The increased penalty fee levels will hopefully act as a deterrent and anybody who witnesses environmental crime is encouraged to report it.

To report an incident of environmental crime visit or download the council’s Report It app.

To request a Covid-19 test, visit