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Coronavirus Links: Local & National

Chris Satori

Most services that are operating are very shortstaffed. Please check services online before attempting to contact them by phone. 

Last Updated: Thursday 26 March 2020

Links to local services and contact points that we currently know about. We are doing our best to keep it updated. Please post any new information you might have to us at Facebook: Virtual-Lancaster or

What is Coronavirus (COVID 19). What must I do if I show symptoms?
New UK Government regulations for everyone on 'Staying at home and away from others (Social Distancing)' 
Council Information
Apply for state benefits / support 
Please Donate: Money, food, petfood, other goods. Pickup can be arranged.
Food & Deliveries (Commercial & Voluntary + Foodpacks)
Business & Retail Categories that must close, and permitted exceptions 
Local Support & Help Groups
Business Support
Public Transport
Vets & Animal Rescue 


COVID-19 / Coronavirus is a new illness spreading quickly worldwide that can affect your lungs and breathing. It's caused by a type of virus called a coronavirus. Its specific name is COVID 19. It is highly infectious and, while most people recover, it can be serious or fatal.

Read the NHS Advice For Everyone (Coronavirus (COVID 19) on how to protect yourself and others from catching this new infection, and what to do if you catch it or were in contact with someone else who has it. Please check it regularly for updates and follow advice to the letter.
Click this link for: NHS Advice For Everyone (Coronavirus (COVID 19)

If you think you have symptoms or may be infected do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital for advice. You should self-isolate and not go out. You could easily spread it to other people. Read the NHS advice. You can also visit NHS 111 Online for advice and help, or phone 111. 

The NHS will contact you if they know you are at particularly high risk of getting seriously ill with coronavirus. You'll be given specific advice about what to do. 

NHS 111 Online

NHS Morecambe Bay - Covid-19 Advice

If you are extremely vulnerable to COVID 19 you can register on the GOV.UK coronavirus support database and get help, such as essential food deliveries. You will need your NHS number.

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Click link here for: Latest Government Guidance on 'Staying at home and away from others (Social Distancing)'   

This covers:
1. Staying at home (and keeping visitors out of your home)
2. Closing certain businesses and venues
3. Stopping public gatherings
4. Going to work (ie. who can or can't go)
5. Delivering these new measures
6. There are links on how to get financial support.

To explain how all this must be applied to different social activities and businesses, the UK Government has also issued more recent New Rules On Staying Away From Home And Away From Others 
Click this link for: New Rules On Staying Away From Home And Away From Others

NHS Morecambe Bay - Covid-19 Advice

Mental Health: For people struggling with their mental health, then Positive Futures #positivefuturesnorthwest are a local charity working virtually

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There have been a number of changes to local council services. These have been adapted to meet the needs of the current situation. 

Lancaster City Council: Coronavirus Advice

Lancaster City Council: What you can do to help your family, friends, neighbours and our community Also lists local organisations offering help for those in severe need: local foodbanks, organisations delivering food parcels and meals, and phone support.

Lancashire County Council Services: Coronavirus

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Eggcup Food Redistribution - delivers packs of donated food to people in need. Please donate surplus stock, Visit them on Facebook too.

Lancaster District Urgent Response Fund Morecambe Bay Foundation (established by Lancaster District CVS) has set up an Urgent Response Fund you can donate money to, to provide financial support to community organisations across the Lancaster district that are working to mitigate the impact of the outbreak. 

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If you are extremely vulnerable to COVID 19 you can register on the GOV.UK database and get help, such as essential or priority food deliveries. You will need your NHS number.

Lancaster City Council (LCC) has set up an emergency food voucher system, to supply fresh food where possible, either to community centres or direct to people's homes. They are looking for local organisations who can identify clients needing this service. See LCC: Emergency Food Provision

LCC also lists local organisations offering help for those in severe need: local foodbanks and organisations delivering food parcels and meals.

See also 'Local Support & Help Groups' below for organisations who can link you with a volunteer to do your essential errands if you have to be in self-isolation.

Lots of local commercial food suppliers are offering home deliveries of cooked and freezable meals, groceries, drinks, newspapers and many other handy household items. There are two new and updated lists Lancaster & Morecambe Delivery Services  and Visit Lancaster: Coronavirus. Support your local businesses!

Morecambe Bay FoodBank is no longer open to the public but they are delivering Foodpacks. For a Food Voucher call 01524 400404. 


Most large supermarkets have changed their opening and closing hours. 

Most have exclusive opening times for NHS & other Emergency Workers with ID. The stores will be closed to other shoppers during those times. 
Elderly and / or vulnerable people are advised to stay home and arrange to have any shopping delivered. 

Supermarket shopping arrangements vary widely. Please check the individual supermarket websites below for details.


Online Supermarkets are struggling to meet the sudden huge demand for online shopping and home delivery. Large Supermarkets who operate online shopping / delivery services will soon be able to compare names with the Government database of the most vulnerable and will prioritise these accounts for delivery.
If you are extremely vulnerable to COVID 19 you can register on this Goverment's database and get help with essential or priority food deliveries. You will need your NHS number. 

Lots of local food suppliers and producers are now offering home deliveries. For an updated list see: Visit Lancaster: Coronavirus

For an up-to-date list of types of retail businesses and shops that are permitted to stay open see GOV.UK

26/03/20 Only a small group of retailers are allowed to stay open including:

Off Licences
Medical Services
Bicycle Shops 
Corner Shops & Newsagents
Hardware stores
Banks, Building Socs, Credit Unions
Post Offices
Petrol stations
Car rental
Garage repair Shops
Storage & Distribution Facilities
Market Stalls selling essential items
Vets & Pet Shops
Retail shops in hospitals
Laundrettes & Dry Cleaners
Funeral Homes

Some of these have had to close or are only seeing people by appointment. Check before you go. 

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For a list of Community and Healthcare support providers try: Visit Lancaster: Coronavirus. (used to be Lancaster Tourism! Respect!)

Eggcup Local organisation that collects donated food and redistributes it as food parcels to people in need. Visit them on facebook

Lancaster Coronavirus Support Line This is a community-led response coordinated by Hope Church Lancaster, to offer support to people in need due to the ongoing Coronavirus situation.

Lancaster CVS supports the voluntary sector and supports and promotes volunteering across the district.

Lancaster Acorn Coronovirus Community Support - volunteers who help with shopping, prescription collection, post etc for isolates. Individuals needing help can apply for it through their online form.

Does your Community Service need volunteers to tackle the demands of Covid-19?  Acorn will try to link you up with some. There's an online form

Lancaster and Morecambe Support Group - Coronavirus is on facebook

Lancaster Business Support during Covid-19 is on facebook

Most local faith groups are offering online support. Check their websites. 

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GOV.UK Covid 19 Guidance and Support for businesses, employers and employees. 

Lancaster & District Chamber of Commerce Coronavirus Advice for Businesses

HMRC: Coronavirus Online Advice. Scroll down to 'Featured' items for current changes.
HMRC has set up a help line specifically for the self employed and businesses who are struggling due to the Pandemic. The Coronavirus helpline: 0800 024 1222, open Mon-Fri, 8am-4pm.  They will give you advice on your tax and benefits.

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Lancashire County Council: Schools  Local schools are closed except to particularly vulnerable children and children of key workers. If you think your child qualifies, contact your individual school for more information. 

Lancaster University: Coronavirus  How COVID 19 is affecting services

University of Cumbria: Coronavirus  How COVID 19 is affecting services

Lancaster and Morecambe College: Coronavirus How COVID 19 is affecting services

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Using public transport is only allowed for those forced to make essential journeys.


Please check with bus and rail operators' websites before travelling, as they are operating reduced timetables due to reduced travel and staff absences.

Stagecoach Bus: Coronavirus Temporary timetables

NoWcards: Anyone with a NoWcard pass or Disabled NoWcard in the Lancashire County Council area, Blackburn with Darwen and Blackpool can now also use it for free travel before 9.30am in the morning, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. If you are over 70 or have a physical condition that makes you more vulnerable to COVID 19, or makes it more difficult for people who aren't familiar with your needs to care for you if you get ill, you should not use Public Transport. Ask others to go for you if needed.


Network Rail: Coronavirus Northern Railway is operating an amended timetable to keep the country's key workers on the move. Please only travel if absolutely necessary.

Nothern Railway: Coronavirus Essential travel information

Northern Railway: Keyworker Timetables

TransPennine: Coronavirus

Avanti West Coast: Coronavirus Essential travel information 

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Local vets are only dealing with emergencies, and observing government guidance on social distancing to protect customers and staff. Do not go to the surgery unless you have made an emergency appointment first. Check the web site of your vet for specific guidance.

Bay Vets on facebook
Baldrand House, Bowerham Road, Lancaster, Lancashire LA1 3AJ
Tel: 01524 32696 Email:
Web: (facebook is more regularly updated)

Burch Tree Vets
43 Gladstone Terrace, Lancaster
Tel: 01524 720002 Email:

Lanes Vets (Dimples)
Units 4 - 5 Lake Enterprise Court, Ladies Walk, Caton Road, Lancaster LA1 3NX
Tel: 01524 67777

Lost or found an animal?

Most services are unable to accept new animals at present due to COVID 19

RSPCA services are not currently available to the public. 

Pets Lost and Found in Lancaster, Morecambe and Heysham on facebook

Cats Protection group has reduced its activities. See also on Facebook at Cats Protection, Lancaster & Morecambe

Animal Care is closed but you can visit them on facebook
Blea Tarn Road, Scotforth, Lancaster, LA2 0RD
Tel: 01524 65495 Email:

visit their support group on facebook
Tel: 07931220094 Email:

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PLEASE NOTE: There is a high volume of people currently registering to volunteer. You may only be contacted about volunteering if and when an organisation needs support. Throughout April and May many more new volunteers will be needed and activated.  

National call-up to do support work for the NHS  You can register here to volunteer your services - shopping and delivering essential items, delivering medical supplies, transporting medically fit-for-discharge patients, or being a phone friend, there's plenty to do to help the NHS and save lives.

Lancaster Volunteer Centre - Apply Online Run by Lancaster & District CVS, who are recruiting and deploying volunteers across organisations.

Lancaster Acorn Coronovirus Community Support - volunteers needed to help with shopping, prescription collection, post etc for isolates. You can apply through their online form.

Eggcup Food Redistribution - delivers packs of donated food. Can you help? Visit them on Facebook too. 

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