The second wave of Covid-19 in Harrow is expected to last for “at least six months” and things will “get worse before they get better”, according to the council.

Harrow Council officers and senior councillors told an overview and scrutiny committee meeting on Tuesday (October 20) that it is expecting a “challenging period” as winter approaches.

This includes managing the ongoing impact of the coronavirus pandemic alongside expected winter health pressures, as well navigating colder, darker evenings and protecting staff wellbeing.

Services are expected to come under increased strain, with Cllr Graham Henson, leader of Harrow Council, noting the need to “prioritise” key responsibilities.

Alex Dewsnap, Harrow Council’s divisional director of strategic commissioning, said it would have to juggle delivering immediate services with longer-term strategic goals.

These include the upcoming budget, regeneration plans including the move to a new civic centre, the climate emergency and the 2021 Greater London Authority elections.

“People have done an incredible job so far and we’ve seen them go the extra mile during the first wave,” he said.

“But we will now move into a more challenging period – people are tired, they are fatigued around Covid, and we are moving into a more difficult time of the year.”