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Coronavirus: Council building closed to public after fears staff have virus

PUBLISHED: 09:41 19 March 2020 | UPDATED: 09:41 19 March 2020

Wayland Hall, home to Watton Town Council.
Photographer: Graham Corney.
Copy:  Ian Clarke
© EDP pics 2004 Tel: 01603 772434
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Wayland Hall, home to Watton Town Council. Photographer: Graham Corney. Copy: Ian Clarke © EDP pics 2004 Tel: 01603 772434 Contact:

A town council’s offices and museum has closed for deep cleaning amidst concerns a member of staff as been in contact with a coronavirus patient.

Mayor of Watton Pat Warick and town council clerk Jane Scarrott. Photo: Emily ThomsonMayor of Watton Pat Warick and town council clerk Jane Scarrott. Photo: Emily Thomson

Watton Town Council’s offices, in Middle Street, is also home to Museum 4 Watton which has also closed for the foreseeable future.

A message on the door of Wayland Hall said: “Possible coronavirus case from within this building.

“A member of council staff has been in contact with a suspected case of coronavirus.

“Arrangements have been made to deep clean the building. In the interest of safety the museum is closed until further notice.”

Watton mayor, Patricia Warwick, said: “The partner of the member of staff advised me they had a cough and a high temperature with the staff member having no symptoms at this time.

“A full clean of the building was arranged, although the chance of contamination was highly unlikely, as the staff member had not been in the building since Wednesday, March 11.

“The decision may be perceived as ‘over the top’, but I believe that public safety is of paramount importance.”

Cleaning of the building is expected to be completed on Wednesday, March 18.

Ms Warick added: “Following the clean, there will be staff in the office to answer the telephone and deal with Emails.

“The building will remain closed to the public for the time being. In line with Government guidelines, we have cancelled some future public events.”

Museum for Watton said it has closed to protect its volunteers “many of whom fall into the vulnerable category”.

Phil Kibler, trustee for Museum 4 Watton said: “Initially we closed the museum on Sunday, March 15, after we heard a council staff member may have been in contact with someone who may have the coronavirus.

“This is because we are sharing the same building, although they are separated and have separate entrances, we preferred to be ultra cautious.

“We remain closed following the government advice issued yesterday and will remain so until there is a change in government advice.”

The museum held a birthday event on Saturday, March 14 and Sunday, March 15.

It has asked those who attended to seek action if they believe to have symptoms.


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