Eric Leach's Ealing Covid-19 Latest Update

Appointments now needed at Ealing Hospital A&E

Now We have to Book an Appointment to Attend Ealing Hospital A&E

First it was Covid-19 response that required us to book an appointment to visit the tip, then it was swimming pools and now it’s for potentially life-saving treatment at Ealing Hospital Accident & Emergency. This began as a pilot at the beginning of November 2020. People who have an ‘urgent, but not serious or life-threatening medical condition’ are being ‘encouraged’ (i.e. told) to telephone ‘111’ before attending Ealing Hospital (EH) A&E. This is called ‘111 First’.

We are all being asked to self-diagnose here. The 111 call handler will investigate our condition and may organise an appointment for us at EH A&E. Anecdotally the call handler might tell us to get an appointment with our GP. There’s currently no guarantee that the 111 call handler will be clinically qualified. Another concern is how the 111 service is linked to the 999 service. 999 call handlers often redirect ‘medical’ calls to 111. On 21 October 2020 the activist group Ealing Save Our NHS (ESON) wrote to the boss of NHS North West London expressing concerns about 111 First. ESON has yet to receive a reply.

NHS North West London has been trying for at least eight years to reduce the number of attendances at Ealing Hospital’s A&E department. Closing Children’s A&E at the hospital in June 2016 clearly cut down the numbers. But the latest ‘demand management’ technique is based on trying to filter out on the phone those potential attendees who might be ‘time wasters’ or just not seriously ill or injured. However, there is of course a risk that inaccurate telephone triage (especially by a non-clinician) could cause unnecessary pain or a needless death.

Covid-19 Infection Rates in Ealing

The current infection rate in Ealing is 205.1/100,000. This is a drop of 24.2% since last week. For the three neighbourhoods I regularly check, the infection rates in the order of last week and this week are:

Cuckoo Park, Hanwell: 280.9, 237.7

Southall Park: 392.7, 254.7

Elthorne Park: 93.3, 155.4

The ‘R’ rate in the UK has fallen to 0.88.

(Public Health England)

Ealing Council’s Public Health Will Have No Involvement in Covid-19 Vaccinations

On 24 November 2020 Ealing Council’s Director of Ealing Public Health (EPH) Anna Bryden said EPH will have no involvement in the Covid-19 vaccinations of Ealing’s population. Its role will be limited to communication and community engagement. She also confirmed that her small team of 15 began contacting locally those in Ealing who had contracted Covid-19 on 12 November 2020. Surprisingly EPH have not been given the role of contacting Covid-19 contacts. No doubt the multi-£billion NHS Track and Trace operation will continue doing (or not doing) the contact tracing.

Ealing Pubs to Re-open as Pub Restaurants on 2 December 2020

Included in this list are:

‘Drayton Court’, West Ealing

‘Duke of Kent’, West Ealing

‘The Grange’, W5

‘The Grosvenor’, W7

‘The New Inn’, W5

‘The Plough’, W5

Save Watermans Emergency Appeal

Watermans Arts Centre in Brentford houses an art cinema that Ealing residents regularly visit. Its future looks very uncertain. As part of an initiative launched by the Theatres Trust to prevent the closure of hundreds of UK theatres, Watermans is raising cash to fund its survival. Over 400 people have already donated over £36,000. Please help by clicking here.

Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs)

Be in no doubt – Ealing LTNs exist in response to Covid-19. Ealing Council has announced that in mid-December 2020 it will carry out ‘an interim assessment (which) will check feedback on all eight Ealing LTNs and look at whether any immediate changes are needed’. However before then as from Monday 7 December 2020 the owners of vehicles which drive through any of the LTN road blocks and whose vehicles are snapped on CCTV cameras ’could’ receive a £130 Fixed Penalty Notice.

On Thursday 3 December 2020, beginning at 7:00pm an Ealing Council’s Overview and Scrutiny Panel will discuss the Council’s ‘COVID Emergency Transport Measures’ report. This 17 page ‘update’ details how £1.13 million grant funding has been spent since June 2020 on ‘active travel and social distancing measures in response to Covid-19 and to aid economic and social recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic’. To view the report and to view the virtual meeting click here.

A reader of my newsletter has requested that I should be neutral about Ealing LTNs. But I am not neutral. I oppose the way the Government and Ealing Council have thrust LTNs upon us in Ealing. I am aggressively opposing LTN 21 ‘West Ealing South’, where I live. I am a co-founder of CAMTAG ( which will do what Ealing Council has not done - survey all the residents in LTN 21 and find out if they want LTN 21 retained or removed. The survey is planned to take place in January/February 2021. CAMTAG is one of the main instigators of the Ealing LTN Judicial Review (JR). In just 10 weeks time the JR Court Hearing could quash LTN 21 along with four other LTNs (21, 25, 30 and 35). Crowdfunding is being employed to fund this legal action. Over £34,000 has been raised, but more is needed.

95% of 1,900+ Surveyed Want Ealing LTNs Removed

Ealing Conservative Party has recently completed an LTN survey of almost 2,000 residents. 95% want the LTNs removed. In ‘West Ealing South’ LTN (21) and in ‘Loveday & Mattock Lane’ LTN (30 & 35) 97% wanted rid of their LTNs.

A Martinware ‘Wally Bird’ Turns Up after Being Stolen from Pitshanger Manor in 2005

Martinware pottery was created by the four Martin brothers from 1873 to 1914. Their factory was opened in Southall in 1877. In 2005, 15 Martinware pieces were stolen from Pitshanger Manor in central Ealing. A pottery expert recently spotted one of the stolen pieces for sale on eBay – a ’Wally Bird’ (valued in ‘The Times’ 30 November at £200,000). The bird has now been re-united with the remaining ‘un-stolen’ Martinware pieces in Southall Library. Mores the pity we can’t all view this recovered bit of valuable pottery as Ealing Council’s Covid-19 response has kept the library closed to the public.


Eric Leach

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November 30, 2020