Supporting our tenants, visitors and partners
An update from our Chief Executive, Dr Victoria Edwards OBE
Given the uncertainty, risk and disruption associated with COVID-19, we want to reassure you that our priority is continuing to support the wellbeing of all our tenants, business partners, beneficiaries, staff, and their families.Your health and wellbeing is our number one priority.
Although our offices and educational centres are now closed, we are working hard to identify initiatives that inspire love and understanding of the natural world in these difficult times.
We will honour all grants already committed.However, in light of the current emergency our previously published grant ‘streams’ are now suspended.We are considering how funds might be redirected to ensure that we are able to support priority needs.
Please keep an eye on the website and we will update the Grants page as soon as we have any revised grant application opportunities.
As schools have now closed, all routine and pre-booked educational visits to the ECT estates have been cancelled.However, please do contact us in the usual way if we can help your school or community group with resources for outdoor activities appropriate to current guidelines.
We will be carrying out only emergency repairs while the nation has been asked to self-isolate.In doing so, we continue to prioritise the most vulnerable and those at higher risk in our communities.We appreciate your patience while we help those at most need first.
All of our contractors have been asked to follow the government guidance in relation to hygiene measures when visiting tenants.
Our organisation is now being managed remotely with no visitors to our offices.Phone calls, mail and email will be responded to routinely as we continue to support our tenants and business stakeholders.
We recognise that outdoor space and fresh air are imperative to everyone’s wellbeing.At the moment our permissive paths remain open, but we are experiencing higher than normal use of them.We ask people to observe all Government guidelines regarding social distancing (2 metres minimum) and unnecessary movement. It is imperative that you use sanitising gel when touching gates – the virus can live on hard metal surfaces for up to 9 days – please do not put other walkers at risk.
We continue to follow Government health and wider guidance and stand ready to adapt to future changes.We will be posting any updates as soon as we have them on our website and social media, so please look out for these.
In the meantime, we know that coronavirus poses both practical and communication challenges for everyone. On behalf of the Trustees, and everyone at The Ernest Cook Trust, I would like to thank you for your continued support.We wish you the best of health.Please feel free to call me or any member of the ECT team if we can do more to support you.
Dr Victoria Edwards OBE
Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Update 16 March 2020, 4.00pm
Given the uncertainty, risk and disruption associated with COVID-19, we want to reassure you that our priority is continuing to support the well-being of all our tenants, business partners, beneficiaries, staff, and their families.
Our offices and educational centres are all open and we remain fully mobilised to deliver our activity with and for you over the coming weeks and months.
Should remote working become necessary, ECT staff have secure access to our central IT systems. This means that we will be able to continue supporting our tenants and business stakeholders.
With regards to attending to urgent repairs at your home, we will be prioritising the most vulnerable and those at higher risk in our communities. We ask all of our tenants to respect this decision and be patient with routine repairs in the meantime.
We have asked all of our contractors to increase their hygiene measures when visiting our tenants.
For those who have confirmed bookings for group visits to our educational sites, please ensure that you supplied an emergency out of hours contact number on your booking form, so that we can let you know if sessions are to be cancelled at short notice.
Visitors and Business Partners
We recommend that as many meetings (especially non-essential) as possible are conducted by Zoom/Skype/other technology or over the telephone, keeping face to face contact to a minimum.
We would be grateful if our business partners would work with us using compatible software to enable this.
For any essential visitors to our premises, we will kindly ask you to adhere to our visitor protocol.
We continue to follow Government health and wider guidance and stand ready to adapt to future changes.
We will inform you immediately if we decide to close our office and sites but, for now, we remain open and are working on a ‘business as usual’ policy.
In the meantime, we know that coronavirus poses both practical and communication challenges for everyone. Please feel free to call me or any member of the ECT team if we can do more to support you.
Take care and best regards,
Dr Victoria Edwards OBE