CORONAVIRUS LATEST: Places of worship close in Redbridge

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Redbridge churches, mosques, synagogues and other places of worship are now closed to the public.

Only one faith leader and one assistant will be allowed inside and the council suggests prayers and services are live-streamed instead.

The drastic measures, which will remain in place until further notice and are under constant review, are aimed at reducing person-to-person contact during the coronavirus crisis.

There are more than 100 cases of COVID-19 across Redbridge and neighbouring Waltham Forest.

Guidance from the council reads: “In Redbridge we recognise the importance religion and places of worship have within our communities.

“We have seen these places come together to help our most vulnerable residents during this unprecedented pandemic.

“Whilst the government guideline advises that places of worship remain open for solitary prayer, we should also remember that the underlying message from the government is to remain in your homes and keep social distance to prevent the spread of the virus.

“The longer we are able to maintain our distance from one another, the greater our chances of preventing any further outbreaks and cases within our communities.

“We urge all places of worship to continue to assess the situation carefully and consider whether they remain open during this time. Our priority must be the health and wellbeing of all residents.”

The leader and assistant should only stay inside the place of worship for essential tasks and must make sure the doors are closed behind them, according to council rules.

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Victoria Munro

Local Democracy Reporter