Helston Town Council in Cornwall is 'acting on the ground' with an emergency plan, bringing together the whole community, to support people who are self-isolating.

They are one of the first councils locally to start a 'Community Emergency Plan'.

More than 50 Helston locals have already stepped forward to volunteer their services, from food delivery to picking up prescriptions.

Helston has a population of almost 12,000 people and a large proportion are elderly.

Helston Town Council are one of the first councils locally to start a community plan. Credit: ITV West Country

The campaign echoes the World War I style posters with the message 'Your Town Needs You'.

The nation has been advised to undertake self-isolation and social distancing measures in the face of tackling the coronavirus outbreak.

Anyone over 70, with pre-existing health conditions or who is pregnant has been advised to self-isolate for 12 weeks.

Helston Town Council's plan works towards 'easing the burden' on those either suffering from the virus or self-isolating.

Mayor of Helston, John Martin, told ITV News: "It could be shopping, sending messages to family or prescription pick-ups, or a knock on the window or a wave to check they’re OK."

He added:

It’s important to act on the ground rather than respond to national because people are getting different messages so I think we can be more reliable as a source because we know who might be struggling.

John Martin, Mayor of Helston
Helston has a large population of elderly residents. Credit: ITV West Country

Local shops, traders and fruit and veg suppliers are just a few of the businesses who are part of the community plan. They aim to 'fill the gaps' left by retail chains who are struggling to keep up with the high demand.

Deputy Mayor, Tim Grattan-Kane, says: "It is really positive people are stepping up to face this challenge."

We’ve instigated our Community Emergency Plan to help those troubled by Coronavirus. We’re gathering a group of volunteers so that together we can work towards easing the burden on those people who are either suffering from the illness or likely to be under some form of self-isolation over the next few months.

Tim Grattan-Kane, Deputy Mayor of Helston
Credit: ITV West Country

The council is encouraging others to follow their lead.

It's no good trying to implement a plan when the tidal wave is breaking over you, we need to start work now and I urge all the other local parishes and town council – get involved in your local community. We are here to help the community and we cannot expect both our county council and national government to fill in all the gaps, we are down to helping one another – help your neighbour.

Tim Grattan-Kane, Deputy Mayor of Helston