Local heroes reflect on a year like no other

Tuesday 22 December 2020

At the end of a year like no other, local heroes have been reflecting on how the community has come together and their roles in keeping local services going.

Key workers from Kensington and Chelsea Council have:

  • Provided 5,229 key workers with free parking in the borough
  • Collected 12,340 tonnes of recycling
  • Issued 357 new licenses to businesses for outdoor trading
  • Made over 5,650 telephone calls to check on the welfare of vulnerable residents
  • Covered 3,000 miles in our warden's team, tackling anti-social behaviour

Maddy McHale began her role as a warden supervisor in the new community wardens’ team in July, as the first national lockdown had lifted. The wardens keep our streets safe, enforcing public protection orders, dealing with anti-social behaviour, begging, busking and highway and road faults. 

Maddie said:

“We’ve built great relationships with residents over the past 6 months. Many we know on a first-name basis. Particularly the elderly who have been quite lonely during this time, we always make an effort to stop and talk to them, ask them about their day and make sure they have what they need.”

Daniel Lewis was redeployed from his usual role as a neighbourhood business support manager at the height of the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic to coordinate welfare calls to residents in council housing. He said:

“The welfare call system has helped to give residents faith in the council, and it gives us a chance to support them and their needs.

“I’m really proud of the work the team has done, one resident was suffering a bereavement and we had flowers sent, another needed urgent food supplies and we bought them ourselves and hand-delivered them straight away.”

Sohail Shahzad is a community enforcement officer in the local area. He and his team have acted as a friendly and reassuring face for the local community. He said:

“Every day is different. I walk around 15 miles a day so it keeps me fit. The community respects us and that makes the job so much better, it makes me feel alive and gives me a fullness of heart.”

Council key workers will be working over the Christmas period to support the community, with the covid hub supporting those who are isolated and need support or emergency food deliveries. For full opening hours of council services this Christmas go to the Council website.