Hello Everyone

So today is another big day and milestone in the roadmap out of lockdown restrictions.  Monday May 17th means we can cautiously hug our loved ones, so make sure you check out the correct ways to hug, make sure you take up the offer of free Covid 19 tests and most importantly make sure you keep safe and well.

Communicating Covid Clearly – Carer Focus Group 2pm Today

The Carers Centre is facilitating a focus group on carers experiences of Covid messaging during the last year within Tower Hamlets.  Email tony@ccth.org.uk for an invite but be quick.

The Government’s roadmap out of lockdown is on track, and stage three begins today, with more restrictions being lifted. See below for full details.

This staggered lifting of restrictions requires four tests on vaccines, infection rates and new coronavirus variants to be met at each stage. Covid-19 infections in England are at their lowest levels since August 2020, and we are making tremendous progress with vaccinations in Tower Hamlets. Over 100,000 of our residents are now vaccinated, thanks to the incredible efforts of our healthcare workers, volunteers, everyone working behind the scenes, and of course all our residents who have taken the vaccine so far. Please take up the offer of vaccination when it’s your turn and play your part in keeping our community safe.

From today, pubs, restaurants, bars and café can serve customers indoors. Museums, theatres and cinemas can reopen, along with hostels, hotels and B&Bs. Lockdown hit many businesses in our borough hard, and we are delighted to welcome them back. They need your support now more than ever, so remember to shop safe, shop local and support the venues in your neighbourhood.

People can now meet in groups of up to 30 outside, and six people or two households can meet indoors, and stay overnight. Up to 30 people can now attend weddings, receptions, and commemorative events such as wakes. You should be cautious about hugging close friends and family. Consider the vulnerability of your loved ones and use common sense. We should be in no doubt that Covid-19 is still here, and there remains a risk of further outbreaks. The responsibility remains with each of us to do our part to keep each other safe.

We can get through this together by continuing to adhere to the restrictions, moving through each step of the roadmap safely, taking up the offer of vaccination when it’s our turn, and getting tested.

I urge you to continue following the rules to protect yourself, your loved ones, and others. By remaining vigilant and all playing our part, we can keep Tower Hamlets safe.

Stay safe,

Mayor Biggs

Lifting of Covid-19 restrictions: step 3

From today, 17 May 2021:

Meeting others

  • Six people or two households can meet indoors, with overnight stays allowed. People can meet in groups of up to 30 outdoors.
  • Up to 30 people can attend weddings, receptions, and commemorative events such as wakes. The number of people who can attend funerals now depends on the size of the venue.
  • Up to 30 people can attend support groups, or parent and child groups. The limit does not apply to children under five.
  • Residents in care homes can now have up to five named visitors.

Social distancing

  • People can now make personal decisions on close contact with their family and friends. Remember that Covid-19 is still here and infectious. You should be cautious about hugging others, especially if they are not vaccinated.
  • Social distancing remains in place in retail, hospitality, business, and medical settings. You still need to wear a face covering on public transport and in shops, unless you are exempt.

Leisure and entertainment

  • Pubs, restaurants, bars and cafés can serve customers indoors.
  • Museums, and cinemas can reopen, along with hostels, hotels and B&Bs.
  • Theatres, concert halls, conference centres and sports stadiums can all reopen.
  • Children’s indoor play areas can reopen.
  • Steam rooms and saunas can reopen, and indoor organised sports and exercise classes for adults can restart.


  • Face coverings are no longer required in secondary schools and colleges.
  • All remaining university students can return to in-person learning.


Check with your local place of worship for the latest advice.

The government is continuing to review cases of Covid-19, vaccination rollout, and any new variants of the virus. Each stage of the roadmap will consider these to ensure the safe lifting of restrictions.

More test centres opening – get tested now

As more Covid-19 restrictions lift, testing remains vitally important – whether you have symptoms or not. Testing finds Covid-19 cases and stops further spread, because people can self-isolate when they know, they are positive. One in three people with Covid-19 do not have symptoms so can pass on the virus without knowing.

Testing protects everyone. That is why we are increasing the number of testing sites across the borough. This includes more walk-in sites and collection points where people can pick up kits and take a test at home.

To continue moving out of lockdown, we all need to play our part and take regular tests. Find your nearest test centre or collection point and starting testing now.

Proud to support IDAHOBIT

Today 17 May is International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOBIT). To mark the occasion we’re proud to support our partners at ELOP (East London Out Project), Tower Hamlets LBGT Community Forum and St. Margaret’s House, who have arranged a special online event at 6pm on the day.

The theme is Together: resisting, supporting, healing, and remembering those lost to hate, featuring speeches and poetry followed by a vigil.

We’ll also be proudly flying the rainbow flag from the Town Hall – so look out for posts on our social media channels on Monday.

Fast, free, and totally confidential HIV and STI tests

Did you know you can have an STI without showing any symptoms?

You may not have had a check in a long time because of lockdown – but many people with sexually transmitted infections (STIs) do not get symptoms, so it’s worth getting tested even if you feel fine.

Getting checked is easy and free. As of next week, Positive East is offering free and confidential appointment-based HIV/STI testing in convenient locations across east London.

This year’s Creativity and Wellbeing Week has been given the theme of ‘care’ and is taking place between 17 – 23 May 2021.

There is a wide recognition of the value of participation in arts and culture in supporting wellbeing. We are marking the week through a series of activities to raise awareness of the challenges and barriers Londoner’s face in participating in arts and cultural activities.

Keep your eye on Thrive LDN’s social media channels next week (via @ThriveLDN) and let us know how creativity helps your wellbeing.

Taking part in arts and creative activity is known to have a positive effect on our mental health and wellbeing.

For Creativity and Wellbeing Week, Thrive LDN is hosting two FREE interactive live workshops to help spark your creativity.

Interactive spoken word workshop with Yossi
Tuesday 18 May, 5.00pm – 6.30pm
Find your creative spark by joining Yossi Goodlink for an interactive workshop which will show you that poetry isn’t stuck to the traditional formats you think it is.

The Green Behind the Cloud with YourStudio’s Tom and Howard
Wednesday 19 May, 11.00am 12.00pm
Join Tom and Howard, founders of creative design agency, YourStudio, for a workshop to discover nature’s superpowers and make your own creation!

Our friends at Good Thinking have been working in partnership with Muslim communities in Newham, Newham Council’s Public Health Team, and the Mental Health Lead for North East London CCG to create the Five Ways to Wellbeing and Islam.

Endorsed by the Muslim Council for Britain, British Islamic Medical Association and The British Board of Scholars and Imams, the Five Ways to Wellbeing and Islam will be available in seven languages English, Bengali, Gujarati, Urdu, Somali, Hindi and Arabic.

Important Numbers:

Unpaid carers can still access FREE PPE supplies. If you would like to receive PPE, Please contact the Carers Centre on 0207 790 1765 or Ayeda directly.

Domestic Violence Duty Line:  020 7364 4986 between 9am – 5pm.Victim Support:  020 7364 2448/7957

Just wishing everyone a peaceful, safe and week and remember if you need information and advice from the Carers Centre just email enquiries@ccth.org.uk

Tony Collins-Moore
Carers Academy Manager

Get in touch

The Carers Centre
21 Brayford Square
London, E1 0SG

020 7790 1765


Opening hours

Monday - Friday – 9.30am – 5pm
Saturday and Sunday – Closed

Follow us

advice quality standard logo