18 Mar 2020

Council services respond to Covid-19

The Isle of Wight Council is continuing to urgently review and adjust its activities to maintain critical services to Island residents in line with the ongoing updates from the government in relation to Covid-19 (coronavirus).

See the updated list of service changes here

From today (Wednesday 18 March) a number of key changes will take place, while maintaining critical front-line services.

“We are putting all our efforts into keeping our most essential services running during the outbreak”, said Councillor Dave Stewart, leader of the Isle of Wight Council.

“Unfortunately, that means that we’ve had to temporarily close some Isle of Wight Council services. We apologise for any inconvenience that may cause, but feel it is essential to help to protect our community and minimise unnecessary travel and social contact during this time.”

“Our staff are changing their ways of working to ensure that we maintain our business continuity and the essential services for our community, especially those most vulnerable who rely on our services,” said John Metcalfe, chief executive and head of paid service.

“Where possible our staff are being encouraged to work from home in order to minimise travel and support those who have had to socially isolate themselves. We have plans in place to support critical services and are working hard to ensure that this continues throughout the coming weeks.”

Many of our services are available online - please save time and go online if you can.

Service details

Adult Community Learning

The Community Learning Centre, Westridge, Ryde is closed, however staff are still contactable by email to: acl@iow.gov.uk 

Further updates will be shared on Facebook. www.facebook.com/IWCACL

Adult social care

Offices are open as normal: Monday to Thursday 8.30am until 5pm and Friday 8.30am until 4.30pm
Telephone: 01983 814980 or 821000

  • Outside of these times urgent calls should be directed to Wightcare: 821105.
  • If you are worried about a vulnerable adult, please contact: Wightcare: 821105 (24 hours).
    You do not need to know everything about a vulnerable adult and what is happening before you contact us.

Bereavement Services

Crematorium Grounds and Book of Remembrance: [Open Monday to Friday 9am to 4.30pm.

The office, chapel and Book of Remembrance room will be closed weekends until further notice starting from 29 March 2020.

The grounds can be accessed at any time, but if the gates are closed, please park in the road outside and use the pedestrian gate.

Office hours are as above for weekdays, except for bank holidays, when the office is closed.

All cremation documentation, burial forms and music should be delivered at least three clear office working days prior to each service, especially over this period.

Funeral services are continuing as normal at present and we will keep you informed of any changes that may have to be put into place in the near future.

Children’s Services

Offices are open as normal: 9am - 5pm
If you are worried about a child or young person, please contact: Isle of Wight Children’s Services: 0300 300 0117 (24 hours).
You do not need to know everything about the child or young person and what is happening before you contact us.
In an emergency contact the police by dialling 999.

Contact Centre and help centres

The Contact Centre remains open as usual.
Newport Help Centre remains open as usual.
Ryde Help Centre, at Ryde Library, remains open as usual.

Coroners office

As from 23 March 2020 the office will be closed to the public.
To contact the Coroner Service please email coroners@iow.gov.uk or telephone 01983 823010.

Council buildings or land

For emergencies involving council-owned buildings, please contact Wightcare: 821105.

Floating bridge

Cowes floating bridge is operating as normal.

Highways emergencies

Flooding, fallen trees, traffic lights not working etc - please contact Island Roads: 822440 or visit the website - www.islandroads.com

Emergency calls received during these times will be diverted to the duty engineer and dealt with accordingly.

Housing Needs

Email: housing@iow.gov.uk
Phone: 01983 823040
Opening Times: Monday - Thursday 8.30am - 5pm and Friday 8.30am - 4.30pm
Emergency contact number (out of hours only): 01983 821105

Leisure Services facilities

The Heights: will close at 9pm on 18 March
Medina: will close at 9pm on 18 March
Westridge: will close at 9pm on 18 March.


The following libraries are open as usual. However, venues are subject to changes due to availability of staff.

  • Cowes Library
  • Freshwater Library
  • Newport Library
  • Ryde Library
  • Sandown Library
  • Ventnor Library
  • The mobile library
    Service 24-hour online facility is available with your library card. Please log on www.iwight.com/thelibrary
    Home library service is not scheduled for the next two weeks and will be reviewed.

Museum Service

Record Office (Hillside, Newport) will close at 5pm on 18 March
Dinosaur Isle Museum will close at 4pm on 18 March

Cowes Maritime Museum

The same opening hours as Cowes Library, above.
Museum of Island History will close at 5pm on 18 March

Planning and Building Control

All planning applications should be submitted electronically, either to development@iow.gov.uk or via the Planning Portal https://www.planningportal.co.uk/.

Planning files are still currently available to view at Seaclose, although customers are asked to carefully consider whether viewing files is necessary.

Building Control is maintaining its service, but applications should be submitted electronically either to building.control@iow.gov.uk or via the Planning Portal https://www.planningportal.co.uk

Recycling and waste collections

All recycling and waste collections continue to operate as usual.

Please remember to set out your wheeled bins/gull-proof sacks and food waste by 7am on the correct day of your collection or they will not be collected.

If your household is self-isolating you will need to follow guidance for Cleaning and Disposal of Waste:

Use your usual household product, like detergents and bleach. Clean frequently touched surfaces such as door handles, handrails, remote controls and tabletops.

• Place cleaning product plastic bottles & nozzles in the recycling
• Place used kitchen towel, tissues and wipes in the General Waste
• Wash tea towels and cleaning clothes appropriately.
• Personal waste such as tissues and disposable cleaning clothes must be placed in the general waste.
• During your period of self-isolation please
• place waste and recycling in plastic bags, tie these and then place in a second bag and tie again. (Double Bagging)
• do not place your waste out for collection for 72 hours after it has been double bagged.

More guidance is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-households-with-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection

If you or a member of your household receives a positive Corvid-19 result you will be provided with guidance on waste by your healthcare provider. Do not place out for regular collection.

Register office

The register office is open but with some restrictions:

  • No in-person copy certificate request or collections – please order online
  • No in-person provisional ceremony bookings – please call us
  • The number of guests at any ceremony at Seaclose at has been reduced – couples will be advised individually.
  • To register a birth or a death please tel: 823233 option 1. There are limits on the number of people attending to register – you will be advised as you make your booking.

We will continue to take ceremony bookings but this may change at short notice.

Regulatory Services (Licensing, Environmental Health and Trading Standards)

Jubilee Stores - Regulatory Services (Licensing, Environmental Health and Trading Standards and Housing Renewal)

Jubilee stores reception will be are closed to the general public from Friday 20th March 430pm. Services are still available Monday – Friday by contacting:

Environmental Health – eh@iow.gov.uk or 01983 823000
Trading Standards – trading.standards@iow.gov.uk or 01983823000
Community Safety – communitysafetyteam@iow.gov.uk or 01983 823000
Housing Renewal – housing.renewal@iow.gov.uk or 01983 823000
Licensing – licensing@iow.gov.uk or 01983 823159

Out of hours service, please tel: Wightcare on 821105.

Revenues, Benefits, Parking Services, Blue Badges

Online applications remain available for council tax/local council tax support/housing benefit and Blue Badges. To apply for a Blue Badge please visit www.iow.gov.uk/bluebadge
To use the Citizens Access Portal to view your council tax account online please visit www.iwight.com/revsandbens (selecting Council Tax and then Citizens Access Portal).
To use the Citizens Access Benefits Portal to apply and notify a change of circumstances please visit www.iwight.com (selecting under the 'Save time do it online' Housing Benefits).

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  • Some changes to council services will come into force from today (18 March)
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