Forty-five people sleeping rough in Watford have been given temporary accommodation during the coronavirus crisis.

Homelessness charity New Hope has been able to secure a roof over the heads of some of the town's most vulnerable people.

They will either be staying at a Watford town centre hotel or OneYMCA.

For many of them, this will be the first time in a long while that they have had their own room.

New Hope has urgently worked with Watford Borough Council and the town's MP, Dean Russell, to secure this accommodation.

New Hope says over the next week or so, its focus will shift from providing meals and support at the Haven Support Centre, to preparing meals at the Haven and them delivering them to the new accommodation.

Further support will also be given and New Hope is well aware of how logistically challenging this will be.

New Hope chief executive, Matthew Heasman, said: "During these unprecedented times, it is yet again those most vulnerable who are at the highest risk. I am delighted that after a huge effort, we will be able to provide accommodation for 45 homeless people in Watford.

"New Hope has been working extensively with both the Watford Borough Council, OneYMCA housing team and Dean Russell MP.

"The council, OneYMCA and Dean Russell have shown their commitment to New Hope and helping those in the most need during this time."

Mr Russell said: "I am delighted that 45 homeless people will now all have somewhere safe and secure to sleep during this pandemic. Achieving this was a cross-partnership effort and it shows how powerful Watford can be when we work collaboratively.

"Special praise is due to New Hope who every day of year are out helping the homeless in Watford. I was pleased when they called me for help to be able to do my bit."

And Watford mayor Peter Taylor added: "It is vital that we do all that we can to help the most vulnerable members of our community at this difficult time. Over the last few days the teams at New Hope, One YMCA and the council have responded quickly to make sure that we can support people who are sleeping rough or experiencing homelessness in our town.

"I know that they have worked closely with local and national politicians and local hotels to make sure that we do everything we can to stop the spread of this deadly virus among rough sleepers in Watford.

"I am pleased with the impact this work has had and it is a testament to the hard work of many people.

"We must remain committed to seeing the end of rough sleeping in Watford so that every person can have the dignity of a decent home and the opportunity to lead a fulfilling life."

If you are interested in volunteering with New Hope or can donate to the charity, visit and

Nationally, the government has asked all local councils to house all rough sleepers and those in hostels and night shelters by the weekend, according to the charity Crisis.