CORONAVIRUS has forced the closure of the public areas at the main city council offices in Winchester.

The public receptions on Colebrook Street and in the Guildhall will be closed from today (Thursday March 26) until further notice.

The council says the decision has been taken to protect residents and staff in line with public health guidance on reducing the spread of COVID-19.

Civic services are available online, by email and by phone, including those that are usually available from the kiosks in reception areas.

In a statement posted online the council said: "We are sorry for the inconvenience to our customers and thank them for their support in following public health advice."

Initially the notice on the door of the office in Colebrook Street simply said 'closed' with no detail of how people who are not online can contact the council. That has since been replaced with a sign with contact details and a phone for the public to use.

Another notice paid tribute to the NHS and emergency services. It said: "(The pandemic) has bought out the best in our society as witnessed by the selfless work of those working to stem this pandemic and to keep the country running, many of them at great risk to themselves."

It called on the people of Winchester to make a noise at 8pm this evening as has been done across Europe, starting in Italy: "So at 8pm let's get out our musical instruments, vocal chords or simply applaud to show our gratitude."

Key contacts for the city council:

Customer Service Centre: 01962 840222

Waste: 0300 300 0013

Housing: 01962 848400

Payments: 01962 848512


Online links:

For online payments -

For housing repairs -

For parking permits -

To apply for council services -