Olton Friary - Corona Virus (COVID-19)

Recent Notices  January 2021 - National Lockdown (Stay at Home)

Vaccination Update (21-01-2020)

Vaccinations continue to be rolled out across Solihull – more than 10,000 over 80s have now received it, so focus moves  to over 70s and the clinically vulnerable (remaining over 80s to still be prioritised).Because it’s still not clear whether those who are vaccinated can transmit the virus, they still need to observe the restrictions. Some people are less ready to self-isolate if somebody they know has symptoms. Please do not relax on isolating. It’s really important if we’re to keep the virus under control and, in particular, protect our hospitals, currently under huge pressure  Thanks for all your efforts!

Ruth Tennant Director of Public Health - Solihull Council

NHS COVID-19 APP USE (11-01-2020)

Each individual from a single household must register with their own NHS COVID-19 smartphone app. This is because an instruction to isolate from the app is delivered to an individual and therefore cannot be used collectively for a household. If only one person has the app and gets an isolate alert any person at church with them in the same family or support bubble also needs to isolate. With the transmissibility of the virus greatly increased with the new varient it is vitally important to follow this guidance.

COVID-19 Important Message from the Director of Public Health at Solihull Council (06-01-2020)

The vaccination programme has successfully started in Solihull, with the immediate priorities being over 80s and care homes. The next three phases are: 75-80 year olds, 70-75 year olds, and those with underlying health conditions. GPs will contact you when it’s time to arrange your vaccination appointment. The most important thing is to register with a local GP if you have not previously done so. Try not to contact your GP to raise questions about the vaccine, as this will slow down the rollout. There’s lots of information available about the vaccination programme at: https://www.birminghamandsolihullcovidvaccine.nhs.uk/what-you-need-to-know/



End of Recent Notices

Guidance and Policy

Olton Friary has implemented Track and Trace Policy in line with NHS and Department of Health and Social Care guidance for the Autumn & Winter period 2020 / 21. This contact tracing requirement will remain in place for as long as government guidance considers it necessary. The NHS Test and Trace App will be the primary method of collecting attendance information with an additional secure online form for those who cannot for any reason use the app.

The Friary follows the acronym PIP




We want to Protect each and every parishioner and the SCJ community by creating a COVID-19 secure environment including social distancing, the wearing of masks, the use of sanitiser and one way systems in the church. We employ contact tracing to Inform people of positive cases of COVID-19 in the congregation or the SCJ community and in taking this action Prevent onward transmission of the virus.

Primary Method - NHS Test and Trace App


The NHS and the Department of Health and Social Care have launched a Test and Trace app to help make tracing contacts more effective should a person test positive for COVID-19. Olton Friary are adopting this method of Test and Trace as the primary method for our church for the following reasons:

  • The app is totally secure and data never leaves your phone except where you test positive for COVID-19 and the NHS send you a code asking you to release your anonymous contact and venue codes.

  • Use of the app only involves a limited role from Olton Friary, displaying prominent QR code posters so that you can register your attendance and assisting the NHS in the event of a positive COVID-19 test in the parish.

  • It does not require any wardens or stewards to collect information or come in close contact with parishioners causing issues for social distancing.

The NHS COVID-19 Test and Trace app can be installed on all iPhones running iOS 13.5 or later or Android 6.0 (Marshmallow) or later although Android 9.0 is recommended. We ask where possible to install and setup this app on your phone as this will allow you to be alerted if you sit within 3 metres of someone who tests positive for COVID-19.

Most importantly for Olton Friary is that you can register your attendance at every Mass, Service or time of Prayer in the Church. This is done by opening the app and clicking the Venue Check-in > as shown in the Test and Trace App image on this page and pointing the camera at the QR code displayed. Your attendence is automatically registered. This should be done each time you attend church. If you go into anywhere other than the church for example, the Hall or Parish Office a seperate QR code will be displayed there and you will need to scan again. This ensures that the Church is kept seperate from the rest of the building. 

Further information on the NHS Test and Trace App including links to the Apple and Android Store can be found on the official website here:

NHS COVID-19 Official Site

The following link is a short video into how the NHS Test and Trace app works. (This is the trial period video)

NHS Test and Trace Introductory Video (Youtube)

Secondary Method - Olton Friary Attendance Tracking Form

It is recognised that not everybody will have a modern smartphone to adopt the NHS COVID-19 Test and Trace App described above and therefore we are providing a secure Microsoft Form within the Olton Friary Microsoft Office 365 system for anybody attending the chruch to register their attendance. The Microsoft Office 365 system is a GDPR compliant secure area. The data will be deleted after 22 days.

This data where requested, within a 21 day period, could be shared with NHS Test and Trace in the event of a positive outbreak in the parish. A combination of the official NHS Test and Trace app and the Olton Friary Form should hopefully bring us close to 100% coverage. This form can be filled out on a smartphone, tablet or standard PC or MAC. You can fill this out on the same day as attending church. If you forget you can fill it out a day or two later. However please remember that the data will be kept for 22 days from completion of the form and not the date of your attendance at Olton Friary.

The link to the form is as follows: 

Olton Friary Test and Trace Form

The image below is also a link.  

Olton Friary COVID-19 Form

Method for those without a Smart Phone or Internet Access

It is recognised that a small number of parishioners will not have access to a smartphone or computer and therefore may not be able to acces this information. In order to facilitate parishioners without technology we have devised a paper form shown on this webpage. We ask those who want to use this method to take a number of forms home so that they can be pre-filled out at home and given to a steward upon arrival at the church. I would request that this information regarding the paper forms is relayed to those without access to the internet so that they are aware. The information on these paper forms is entered daily into the Microsoft Office 365 online form above and the paper slips destroyed. The information is then aligned, stored and deleted with the electronic submissions.

The basis of Olton Friary attendance tracking is paperless. This is so that the data can be held securely in line with GDPR and additionally in the event of action needing to be taken, the parish contact tracing co-ordinator in liaison with the NHS can do this remotely and effectively.

I therefore would ask parishioners to assist those parishoners that don't have access to technology to ensure that their attendence is recorded.

Conclusion and Call for Help

The aim of this endeavour is to protect everyone in the parish and to contain and manage any outbreak that could happen this winter. This is especially important during the Advent and Christmas season. Information is key to protection and this system will help us ensure everyone is informed in the event of a COVID-19 positive case in the parish and this allows each individual to take any action necessary to protect themselves, their families, friends or vulnerable contacts.

A special COVID-19 email address has been setup and any information or assistance can be directed to this address. This email can also be used to report an attendance at church where it will be entered into the database and the email deleted in line with GDPR.

The email address is as follows:

Olton Friary COVID-19 Email Address

Hopefully, we can work collectively as a community to keep each other safe this Winter.

Many thanks

Martin Hayden

Olton Friary Covid-19 Contact Tracing Co-Ordinator

Page updated: 27 January 2021