Latest information, help and advice available

If you would like to contact us, please use the online links if you can to free up the phone lines for people without access to the internet. You can either:

We recommend you don't visit the Council Offices in Oxted unless it is absolutely necessary, or you have a booked appointment to minimise any risk to you or our officers in relation to the coronavirus (COVID-19).

Sign up to keep up to date

Please sign up to receive regular e-mail updates straight to your inbox. Read our latest recycling and rubbish update, coronavirus newsletter and our business newsletter.

Support for the most vulnerable people in our district

In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, parish based and district wide voluntary groups throughout Tandridge are offering support to the most vulnerable in our community.  To help you or someone you know access this support, we have compiled an online directory with contact details.

Examples of support available to those who are vulnerable or self-isolating include:

  • Help with essential shopping, prescription collection and dog walking
  • Emotional telephone support for those who are lonely, isolated or are carers.

We will continue to update the directory, so please refer back to it regularly, as well as share the information with anyone you know who could benefit.

Community helpline

Community helpline number: 0300 200 1008 (Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm and Saturday and Sunday 10am to 2pm).

This community phone line is to

  • To help direct residents who need support, such as picking up shopping, prescription collections or having someone who can be a telephone friend, to services who can help.
  • To provide advice on where to register your offer of help to support your community.

The helpline can not provide public health advice or answer enquiries relating to council services.

Get the latest guidance about community support from Surrey County Council.

How can I sign up to volunteer to help support the community?

Tandridge Voluntary Action (TVA) is registering a pool of potential volunteers to support the local community in the next few weeks/months.

The support may include activities such as:

  • Providing practical support to older people and other vulnerable groups affected by COVID-19 e.g. shopping.
  • Checking in with people over the phone.
  • Supporting the running of foodbanks and community meal providers.
  • Driving - to transport people and supplies.
  • IT advice for voluntary organisations and individuals about communicating online.
  • Administrative support - helping organisations to change the way they deliver services and contact people in need.

To register your interest to be a volunteer, visit their website or call 01883 722593.

If you are a charity and need more volunteers to support you, e-mail or call 01883 722593.

Directory of community initiatives for vulnerable people in our district

In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, parish based and district wide voluntary groups throughout Tandridge are offering support to the most vulnerable in our community.  To help you or someone you know access this support, we have compiled an online directory with contact details.

Surrey Drug and Alcohol Care

SDAC provide confidential, non judgemental support for drugs, alcohol, mental health and wellbeing, call their freephone number 0808 802 5000 which is open 24 hours a day.

Is the Westway Community Cafe and Wellbeing Centre in Caterham open? (previously called the Douglas Brunton Centre)

The Westway Centre is closed until further notice. The centre will be able to provide some services with the help of Dial-a-Ride such as, collecting shopping and medication or organising for a hot meal to be delivered to your home. Please call 01883 347230.

For information about Surrey Choices please call 01483 806650.

Keeping active

If you're stuck at home, it's still important to stay as active as you can. Even a small amount of activity will have a positive impact on your physical and mental health, and there's plenty you can do at home:

  • Everyday activities such as doing the vacuuming, hanging out the washing, and mowing the lawn all count towards your daily activity levels.
  • Try to break up long periods of sitting by getting up and moving for at least five minutes each hour. Play your favourite music and have a dance or walk up and down the stairs. 10 Today also has a short, enjoyable and easy exercise routine.
  • Looking for stay-in workouts? NHS workout videos are great place to start. From wake-up exercise to aerobics, the most technical equipment you need is a bottle of water. 
  • Going for a brisk walk or a gentle jog also helps reduce stress and anxiety and benefits your body, but ensure you only go out once a day, don't mix with people outside your household and avoid unnecessary travel by staying in your local area.
  • Visit Sport England's 'Join the Movement' at which gives you fun and creative ideas on how to get active at home or outdoors.
  • Cosmic Kids Yoga is great for mindfulness and relaxation for kids. 

What should I do to help my mental wellbeing?

Mind has produced information on coronavirus and mental wellbeing. The government has issued guidance for people struggling with their mental health during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Additional online support and practical guidance has been issued to help them cope.

 Public Health England has also published guidance for the public on mental health and wellbeing during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

If you're isolated or feeling anxious about coronavirus, here are some ideas to look after your mental wellbeing:

  • Practise relaxation and mindfulness to boost your mood. The NHS has hints and tips on mindfulness and Every Mind Matters has specific advice on maintaining good mental wellbeing during the current situation.
  • Mental health charity Mind has put together detailed advice.
  • Gardening can help tackle stress and anxiety and improve your physical health, so it's a great time to get outside and brighten up your garden

If you would like more ideas on how to look after your physical health and mental wellbeing please contact our Wellbeing Prescription team via the contact us form on the Wellbeing Prescription website or call 01883 732787.

What support is there for the self-employed?

The government has announced a new Self-Employed Income Support Scheme, which will pay a taxable grant of 80% of average annual profits over the last three years up to £2,500 per month.

The scheme will be open for at least three months, backdated to 1 March 2020. The scheme will provide targeted support for self-employed people with profits up to £50,000 a year.

The scheme will be for those who earn the majority of their income from self-employment and have filed a tax return for 2018/2019. Those self-employed workers who have not yet submitted their tax return will have four weeks to do so.

The scheme will be administered by HMRC and it is expected businesses will be able to receive the grant in early June. 

All the government’s support, and associated guidance, for businesses can be found at

Frequently asked questions about the scheme.

You will only be able to access this scheme through GOV.UK. If someone texts, calls or emails claiming to be from HMRC, saying that you can claim financial help or are owed a tax refund and asks you to click on a link or to give information such as your name, credit card or bank details, it is a scam.

The Money Advice Service also has a helpful list of financial support available to people. 

What support is there for businesses affected by COVID-19? (Updated 31/03/20)

Following the budget 2020 (COVID-19) and recent announcements, the government announced it will provide additional business rate support to businesses.

The Chancellor announced, as a temporary measure for 2020/2021 only, that he would:

  • Increase the level of the retail discount to 100% for eligible occupied retail businesses (previous threshold of £51,000 rateable value has been removed).
  • Expand the retail discount to include estate agents, letting agents, bingo halls, hospitality and leisure properties, such as museums, theatres, gyms and hotels.
  • Increase the level of the pubs discount to £5,000 for pubs, with a rateable value less than £100,000.
  • Nursery Discount – 100% relief will apply to premises occupied by providers on Ofsted’s Early Years Registers.
  • A £10,000 grant to our smallest businesses with a rateable value of £15,000 or less.
  • A £25,000 grant for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000.

Businesses do not need to apply for the Expanded Retail Relief, an amended bill will follow in due course. 

With regards the Small Business Grant Fund and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant, the authority will be identifying businesses eligible for a grant and will be contacting the businesses to arrange payment by BACS shortly.  Please continue to review this web page for further information.

If your business does not meet the above criteria and your organisation is affected by COVID-19, we do have the discretion to give hardship relief. Please complete our application form.

For more information visit business rates

Government business support

A full range of business support measures have been made available to UK businesses and employees. The business support details the different schemes available, when they open and how to apply.

Get answers to business questions in the government’s frequently asked questions or over the phone on Monday to Friday, from 9am to 6pm on 0300 456 3565.

Business closures and stay at home frequently asked questions

Government guidance

Business support from Coast to Capital’s Growth Hub in response to the COVID-19 pandemic

Coast to Capital Growth Hub advisers are available to businesses for initial telephone discussions and signposting for specialist financial advice. 

Online workshops will be held in the coming days and weeks on issues related to business resilience, cashflow management and home working methods.

Meanwhile, Coast to Capital is conducting regular conference calls with business support and membership organisations to understand issues businesses are facing and communicate these to the government to help inform future support.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has asked Growth Hubs to report weekly on the economic impact.

The Growth Hub is working hard to provide an additional support package for local businesses and further updates will follow. 

Businesses should contact the Coast to Capital Growth Hub via e-mail or visit their Business Support page. More information about their operational response can be found here.

Business Improvement District (BID)

Contact either the Caterham Business Improvement District (BID) and the Oxted Business Improvement District (BID) for additional information and support.

Surrey Chamber of Commerce

The Surrey Chambers of Commerce issued their official statement on Monday 23 March outlining their support for Surrey businesses, both now and in the future, once the area is in the recovery stage.

Personal Protective Equipment urgently needed

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is in high demand at the moment to protect key workers. If any businesses have any supplies available, please contact

Will my recycling and rubbish collections be affected?

In the coming weeks, the service is likely to be impacted by staff shortages due to sickness.

As there are more people at home, there is an increase in the amount of waste being collected in the district. In addition, the need for social distancing, more parked cars and staff absence due to sickness means some waste collection services may take longer to be collected and there may be delays.

If there are staff shortages due to sickness increase, we may temporarily suspend the service.

Sign up to receive our recycling and rubbish collection updates straight to your inbox.

To minimise delays, follow this guidance:

  • Don’t park your car so it blocks the access to the road. Our collection vehicles and emergency vehicles need to easily access your road.
  • Put your bin out early and leave it out till it’s been emptied.
  • Put it at the edge of your property, not on the pavement or in the road.
  • Put food waste in your green food caddy, do not put it in your rubbish bin.
  • Compact your recycling as much as possible to maximise space and only put bins out when they are full.
  • Excess rubbish on top of or down by the side of your black wheeled rubbish bin will not be collected.​
  • Bin crews are working hard to keep this essential service going during this difficult time. If you see them, please let them know you appreciate what they’re doing and give them a wave or a smile but please maintain a distance of at least two metres.

Recycle right and reduce your waste

  • Put the right items in the right bins. Use the Surrey Recycles search tool to find out what goes where. 
  • Reduce your waste as much as possible. Could you use an alternative reusable item, or use something again instead of throwing it away? Read these tips on how to reduce the amount of waste.
  • Don’t buy more food than you need and remember to freeze it if you can’t eat it before the use by date. Use up leftovers rather than throwing them away. Check the recipe page for ideas.
  • Start composting at home. Buy a compost bin at a reduced rate or for those wanting to compost all their food waste, food waste digesters are also available.

What do I do with my waste if I’m self-isolating?

The government has advised anyone who is self-isolating with symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19), including those with a diagnosis of the virus, should treat their household waste as follows:

  • Personal waste ­­– eg. used tissues and disposable cleaning cloths can be stored securely within disposable rubbish bags. These bags should be placed into another bag, tied securely and kept separate from other waste within your own room. This should be put aside for at least 72 hours before being put in your usual external household waste bin.
  • Other household waste can be disposed of as normal.

The advice also says when cleaning you should use your usual household products, like detergents and bleach, as these will be very effective at getting rid of the virus on surfaces. Clean frequently touched surfaces.

For more information, read the government’s stay at home guidance for people with confirmed or possible coronavirus (COVID-19) infection.

Community Recycling Centres

To protect the centre staff and the public, the community recycling centres in Caterham on the Hill, Warlingham and the Earlswood depot have closed until further notice.

Store at home any items you would normally take to a centre until they re-open, please don’t put them in your bins.

Can I have a bonfire to dispose of my waste?

Residents across the district are being asked to think of others and to not light bonfires to dispose of their waste. Bonfires create smoke, cause air pollution and prevent people from being in their gardens and can have a bigger impact at this time.

Coronavirus is known to cause serious respiratory problems, which could be made much worse if the sufferer is exposed to smoke from bonfires.

Bonfires can also become out of control or cause accidents, creating extra pressure on the already busy emergency services.

We understand the closure of our community recycling centres may create a storage issue for some residents. Please think of others, compost your garden waste where possible, and store your rubbish for disposal when the current emergency is over, rather than burn it.

I'm having a spring clean, what do I do with my additional rubbish?

If you decide to have a spring clean while you’re at home, don’t put everything in the bin straight away, please wait until normal service resumes. To ensure your rubbish and recycling is collected, please don’t put items in your bins, which should be taken to a community recycling centre.

You may like to consider giving unwanted clothes, shoes and household goods to charity when they re-open. Do not leave anything outside closed charity shops as this is fly tipping, which is illegal dumping and a crime.


We appreciate options for disposing of your waste are reduced now, but please don’t be tempted to dispose of your waste elsewhere in the district, this is flytipping.

Flytipping is against the law and those convicted face fines of up to £50,000 or up to five years’ imprisonment, as well as other potential penalties.

How do I keep up to date with all these changes?

To be kept up to date on our recycling and rubbish collection service, sign up to receive our recycling and rubbish e-newsletter.

If you need to contact us about your bin collections, please use our online links if you can to free up the phone lines for people without access to the internet. 

To be kept up to date, please:

Will you stop providing any of the council services?

We are putting plans in place to ensure our services continue to be delivered and we are prioritising the critical services we deliver.

Services that are closed or not available

  • All our play areas are closed until further notice. Parks and open spaces will remain open for the time being and people can still visit their allotments as long as you are two metres apart from anyone outside of your household
  • Skate parks, tennis courts, basketball courts and multi use games areas are all closed.
  • Queens Park Pavilion in Caterham is closed.
  • Caterham and Warlingham Recycling Centres are closed. 
  • Public toilets, except for those on the A22 and A25, are closed until further notice.
  • Freedom Leisure's leisure centres - Tandridge Leisure Centre, de Stafford Sports Centre and the Village are all closed.
  • The Westway Centre in Caterham is closed.
  • Environmental Health and Licensing officers are not carrying out site visits, but are are available by phone and e-mail to answer enquiries and give advice.

Computers in our reception area

We are aware some residents use the computers in the council reception area to access the website for Universal Credit Claims. Due to the ongoing situation it is not possible to sanitise keyboards etc between each use and so we have taken the decision to remove these computers until further notice to safeguard our staff and residents.

If you are unable to access the website remotely from home you can call the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to claim Universal Credit on the freephone number 0800 328 5644.

Will the committee meetings still go ahead?

The following committee meetings were postponed:

  • Strategy and Resources Committee - which was scheduled for 26 March.
  • Overview and Scrutiny Committee Meeting - which was scheduled for 31 March.
  • Planning Committee - which was scheduled for 2 April.

The government has just issued guidance on new powers being given to councils to hold public meetings remotely. We will review the guidance and take a decision about other committee meetings taking place later this month.

Stay home, Protect the NHS, Save Lives

COVID-19 presents with flu-like symptoms, including a fever (37.8 degrees or higher), a cough or difficulty breathing. Anyone with concerns is advised to follow the latest online advice from the NHS. Only call 111 or 999 if it is an emergency. Full guidance on staying at home and away from others

Pharmacy opening hours

Like many other frontline services, pharmacies are having to be flexible about their opening hours to ensure staff have time to rest and for the pharmacy to be cleaned. Find your nearest pharmacy.

Other advice

Social Distancing for everyone and protecting vulnerable people

There is also useful and regularly updated information on the following websites.

How can I avoid catching and spreading coronavirus (COVID-19)? 

Everyone is encouraged to look after themselves and play their part in helping to slow the spread of viruses and germs, including coronavirus and reduce the impact on NHS services. Remember to:

  • Always carry tissues with you and use them to catch your cough or sneeze.
  • Bin the tissue and to kill the germs wash your hands with soap and water, or use a sanitiser gel – do this for at least 20 seconds. [See our guidance in the recycling and rubbish section about disposing of your waste if you have the virus or are self-isolating]
  • Always wash your hands when you get home or into work.

If you are struggling to pay your rent, we can provide some financial support which may help you if your income is reduced by illness, the need to self-isolate, job loss or a reduction in work hours.

Can you help me because I can’t pay my rent?

If you are experiencing financial hardship because of the COVID-19 pandemic there is additional support available through the benefit system. If you receive:

  • Housing benefit - please e-mail with a recent proof of income so your housing benefit can be updated.
  • Universal Credit (UC) - your monthly UC payment should reflect your change in circumstances. You should e-mail your work coach from your journal to explain the situation and also complete a change of circumstances form.
    This also applies to residents who are self-employed because the application rules and minimum income limit have changed because of the pandemic.
  • No current benefits - you need to see if you are eligible for and apply for Universal Credit.

You may be entitled to assistance with a discretionary housing payment if there is a gap between the amount of rent you have to pay and the amount of benefit you receive.

Please apply online using the links if you can to free up the phone line for people without access to the internet.

There is also useful and regularly updated information on the following websites.

Who can help me submit my claim?

The Citizens Advice Help to Claim service, can help you with your application online, or call 0800 144 8444 Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm.

You can also call the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to claim Universal Credit, if you can't submit your claim online, call 0800 328 5644.

I am worried I may be evicted from my home?

If you are worried about your housing situation, visit our homeless and need housing advice page and complete our self-help assessment or phone 01883 722000.

If you are struggling to pay your council tax, we can provide some financial support which may help you if your income is reduced by illness, the need to self-isolate, job loss or a reduction in work hours.

Can you help me because I can’t pay my council tax?

If you are experiencing financial hardship because of the COVID-19 pandemic, please contact us straight away, either e-mail, complete our contact us form or call 01883 722000 and press option 2.

You can apply for council tax support if you are unemployed or on a low income by completing this form and e-mail it to

Council Tax COVID-19 hardship fund 2020/21 – The Government has recently announced a council tax hardship fund.  The amount will be in the form of a minimum £150 reduction in council tax for recipients of working age local council tax support scheme.  Should the current liability for 2020-21 be less then £150, then the liability should be reduced to zero.  Further information will be provided in due course.

Please apply online using the links if you can to free up the phone lines for people without access to the internet.

Please be aware not everyone out there is trustworthy and some people will take advantage of this unusual situation.

Here are just some of the scams we are aware of, but please note criminals come in all shapes and sizes and can contact you at the door, by phone, post or online:

  • Be aware of people offering miracle cures or vaccines for coronavirus – there is no specific treatment for coronavirus (COVID-19). Treatment aims to relieve the symptoms until you recover.
  • Home cleaning services.
  • People impersonating healthcare workers, claiming to be offering ‘home-testing’ for coronavirus – this is a scam and these kits are not currently available to buy.
  • E-mails saying you can get a refund on taxes, utilities or similar are usually bogus and they are just after your personal and bank details.
  • There are lots of fake products available to buy online saying they can protect you or cure coronavirus. These will not help and are designed to take your money.
  • There are new mobile phone applications which claim to give you updates on the virus but instead, they lock your phone and demand a ransom.
  • Your bank or the police will never ask for your bank details over the phone.
  • People offering to do your shopping or collecting medication and asking for money upfront and then disappearing.

Tips to avoid being scammed:

  • Be cautious and listen to your instincts. Don’t be afraid to hang up, bin it, delete it or shut the door.
  • Take your time; don’t be rushed.
  • If someone claims to represent a charity, ask them for ID. Be suspicious of requests for money up front. Check with family and friends before accepting offers of helps if you are unsure.
  • If you are online, be aware of fake news and use trusted sources such as or websites. Make sure you type the addresses in and don’t click on links in e-mails.
  • Only purchase goods from legitimate retailers and take a moment to think before parting with money or personal information.
  • Know who you’re dealing with - if you need help, talk to someone you know.
  • Protect your financial information, especially from people you don’t know. Never give your bank card or pin number to a stranger.

Contact information:

  • If you think you’ve been scammed, report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 and if you need advice, call the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0808 223 1133. If you are in immediate danger, contact the police on 999.
  • Contact your bank if you think you have been scammed.

To learn more about different types of scams and how to protect yourself and others, visit and complete the free online training.

Could you become a Scam Marshal?

A Scam Marshal is any resident in the UK who has been targeted by a scam and now wants to fight back and take a stand against scams. Scam Marshals do this by sharing their own experiences, helping others to report and recognise scams and sending any scam mail that they receive to the National Trading Standards Scams Team so that it can be utilised as evidence in future investigative and enforcement work. Visit for more information and to sign up.

I am worried about losing my home?

If you are worried about your housing situation, visit our homeless and need housing advice page and complete our self-help assessment, e-mail or phone 01883 722000.

How do I self-isolate if I live with other people?

The government has produced advice on social distancing and self-isolation for everyone, including those who live together.

How will someone who is homeless self-isolate themselves?

The Council has plans in place to help anyone who is rough sleeping and needs accommodation to protect themselves or others from the risk of catching coronavirus.

If you are concerned about someone you have seen sleeping rough, please send an alert through StreetLink.

If you are someone who is currently sleeping rough, please either call the East Surrey Outreach Service on 07436 273 164, or e-mail

Are you still carrying out repairs to council housing?

We are prioritising emergency and urgent repairs, where there is a risk to your safety. If you're reporting a non-urgent repair, we will take down the details and we will contact you when we are able to carry out the repair.

When you report a repair, our team will ask you a number of questions about you and your family's health. When we need to enter your home to carry out the repair, we will take additional precautions for personal hygiene and where necessary, we will wear protective clothing. You may also be asked to stay in a separate room while we carry out the repair. This is to keep you, your family and our officers safe.

If you already have an appointment for a non-urgent repair, we will contact you in the next few days to advise you the appointment is cancelled and we will contact you when we are able to carry out the repair.

Are you still carrying out the annual safety checks?

We’ll continue to carry out the annual safety checks such as gas servicing to ensure you remain safe in your home.

If you need to contact us either, submit a contact us form, e-mail or call 01883 722000.

How do I report a problem?
If you would like to report a problem please report it online

We will not be carrying out home visits to monitor potential nuisances, unless it is absolutely necessary. This is to minimise any risk to the public and officers in relation to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. 

If you wish to make a complaint about a potential nuisance, please ensure you provide the full address of the property you are complaining about, as well as any further information you have about the perpetrator which you feel may be useful.

We will write to perpetrators to inform them we have received a complaint and we’ll ask them to be considerate and to reduce the impact their behaviour is having on their neighbours.

Are parking restrictions still in place?

In light of the government’s instruction to self-isolate and maintain social distancing, we understand residents are working and staying at home more than usual. This has changed parking patterns and we are adjusting our parking enforcement approach accordingly. For the time being our parking enforcement teams will:

  • Not enforce parking on single yellow lines in quiet residential roads.
  • Issue temporary parking permits for car parks or on street parking schemes where they consider it appropriate to do so.

Parking on double yellow lines or zig zags or on single yellow lines on main roads and in town centres could be dangerous and will be enforced as normal. During this time it is important to remember that essential public services will need to maintain access to homes and facilities so please park considerately.

What is happening with my planning application?

We continue to carry out our planning services, but have had to review some areas of work, in particular site visits.  Officers will not be undertaking site visits for the foreseeable future in relation to all types of planning application and/or pre application enquiries.

We are reviewing the way in which we can continue to assess proposals and would request all applications are accompanied by site photographs which show the proposed development in context (i.e in relation to the building/site to which it relates and also in relation to any neighbouring property). Should the officer require additional photographs, these will be requested during the course of the application.

Guidance about planning and enforcement site visits.

Are your building control surveyors carrying out site inspections?

Following the latest government advice if you have decided it is safe to continue building work on your project our building control surveyors are offering an inspection service through mobile technology using Whatsapp, Facetime and Microsoft Teams. For more information, visit their website.

Can I still submit a building regulations application?

Yes. You can submit an online application by using our online portal

Can I take my children to the playground?

No, all 37 play areas are closed until further notice. This is to minimise any risk to the public in relation to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Can I take my children to the skate ramp?

No, all skate ramps are closed until further notice. This is to minimise any risk to the public in relation to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Can I go for a walk in the park?

All our parks and open spaces remain open to the public, however, everyone should follow the government’s guidance on social distancing for everyone.

Can I take my dog for a walk in the parks and open spaces?

Yes, all our  parks and open spaces remain open to the public, however, everyone should follow the government’s guidance on social distancing for everyone.

Can I go to Queens Park Pavillion?

No, the pavillion is closed until further notice. This is to minimise any risk to the public in relation to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. We apologise for any inconvenience caused.