[Last updated 6-11-21]
We are currently experiencing wave three of the coronavirus pandemic, but the situation around the country is very variable and the future remains uncertain. Our village was relatively untouched by the first two waves, but a significant number of people have tested positive in the village recently, reminding us that it is still necessary to maintain our guard to prevent the spread of infection.
A high proportion of residents has now been vaccinated, which reduces the likelihood of infection and, more to the point, dramatically lowers the chances of serious illness if you do become infected. Between 80% and 90% of those currently hospitalised with covid are unvaccinated, and as of the end of September 2021, just 0.5% of Covid-related deaths were of fully vaccinated patients. (BMJ)
The advice is still to remain cautious, avoid close contact with others, and wear masks inside public spaces primarily to lower the possibility of transmitting the virus to others. Further advice can be found in the links below.
Help for those in self-isolation
Many people in the village have already risen to the challenge, offering help to neighbours who may need shopping, prescriptions or other supplies collected, or just a friendly phone call. Kelly de Silva, Clerk to the PC is acting as an information exchange. If you need any form of help, or you have any questions, do contact Kelly by phone or email: email@example.com 07701 053903
(Please note that the shop is also offering free delivery via volunteers to any residents who need it—see below.)
See also this government web-page (and this News post) concerning support for those who are considered ‘extremely vulnerable’. This is another government web-page specific to help with obtaining food.
The village shop in the Royal Oak is operating an updated version of the Shop Coronovirus Policy originally developed by Ian Upshall. Customers are asked to use the sanitiser provided, to wear masks, and to limit numbers to six (including staff). The free delivery service supported by volunteers continues to be available. Please ring 07842 992825 or email firstname.lastname@example.org if this would be helpful to you.
The pandemic has taken a sever toll on many people’s sense of well-being. This leaflet from Somerset County Council, offers a wide range of options for help with different aspects of this, from money worries to loneliness. Mindline Somerset offers a 24/7 emotional support helpline on 01823 276 892. Please also bear in mind that there are many people within our village who would be only too willing to offer help if they know you need it.
Links to further advice
Be healthily sceptical of information on social media. The best source of authoritative advice on health matters is NHS.uk. A banner on their home page will take you straight to their current Covid-19 advice and to the current Government response information.
Somerset West and Taunton Council also has an information page, and have put out an information pack which may be read online or downloaded. Somerset County Council also have an information page, which covers many of the same topics.
On 6 April, this joint press release was put out on behalf of Somerset County and all the District Councils. It is primarily to announce a new phone Helpline (0300 790 6275) offering support for those needing help (except health advice) in coping with the coronavirus crisis. Also you are encouraged to visit this website if you are interested in volunteering.
See also this post on advice to avoid coronavirus scams.
If you have any information which you think would add to the usefulness of this page, please contact Nick Sloan. We will do our best to update and adapt as the situation develops.