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The Coronavirus virus outbreak in 2020 caused Freegle to have to close down or partly fully moderate the website for selected periods. Here are some links and information relating to those decisions and actions.

March 2020

The website was closed on 23rd March 2020 to comply with the lockdown restrictions and reopened on 17th May 2020 in line with English waste disposal sites reopening. Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland communities opened when their waste disposal sites reopened.

April 2020

Email to Volunteers 11th April 2020

Hello everyone, this is a 'keeping in contact' email to you all.
Update on freegling: We are still closed for business to members, other than chitchat and encouragement to post pending offers. It is looking very likely that we won’t have the restrictions on travel lifted after this three week period, but as soon as there is a change the website will be opened again (perhaps in different areas, depending on the restrictions).
Update on us: The new version of ModTools has been released, and small glitches are being ironed out. Do have a look, let us know on Tech if you see anything amiss. The new IOS app is now available and an Android one will be out soon.
There is continuing discussion and questions on various groups on Discourse, and of course our Cafe is available for a chat about anything at all. Why not post a message there to let the rest of us know how you are getting on and share some stories and comments? Click here to join in.
As you can see, we have a nice new map to show where all the present active volunteers are - which is heartening as we are going still strong here and it’s great that we are all pulling together to get through this horrible time personally and for each other.
On behalf of the Board

June 2020

Questionnaire sent to volunteers for feedback on lockdown period 8th June 20 Emailed to all groups via ModTools:
We are looking for feedback for the Board from all of us Volunteers on the recent actions to close down and then reopen the website. We have devised a questionnaire and ask you to kindly complete it please.

You can find the questionnaire here -

It will be open for feedback for 2 weeks. The results will be given to the Board as a summary and list of comments.

Thanks in advance.

Results of questionnaire:

November 2020

England went into a 4 week lockdown. The Board considered the situation and decided to keep the website open. Announcement on Central explained that Freegle was to continue to be open nationally, with some website changes, and groups set to be fully moderated. Local groups can choose to be closed, or change back to normal moderation, if they wish.

December 2020

19.12.20: The Board discussed the Government decision for level 4 tiers and Christmas arrangements in England and decided to return to the November lockdown decision.

20.12.20: Wales changed their lockdown rules and the Board implemented the same rules as for Tier 4 as in England.

26.12.20: More English areas were put into Tier 4, as was most of Scotland, so they too were returned to the November lockdown decision.

26.12.20: New Northern Ireland restrictions were applied. The Board decided to close the NI groups centrally on the 26th December and reopen them on the 2nd January 2021 as fully moderated with auto-repost/auto-approve disabled.

January 2021

5.1.21: Stricter lockdowns brought into force in England and Scotland. The Board decided to keep Freegle open across the UK, but with stricter rules and stronger warnings in place. Local groups can could choose to close their groups if they wished.

The warning shown to each freegler before posting

14.1.21 - even stricter lockdown conditions adopted by Scotland. The Board decided to write an email all Scottish groups explaining the conditions, but to keep to the existing UK situation.

March 2021

2.3.21 - Board announced plan for loosening of UK lockdowns on 8th and 29th March.

25.3.21 - Board decides to keep current UK wide restrictions in place, although there has been changes in Scottish and Welsh restriction are now slightly different.

29.3.21 - Blanket moderation and restricting to local groups only lifted across all groups. Volunteers able to tailor this to suit their group's circumstances.

August 2021

5.8.21 - Board announced that all reference to Covid restrictions will be removed from the website on 7th August 2021.