Having not visited a close relative who was gravely ill last Christmas, and who passed away in June, it was stunning to see a video of someone joking about an event which did not sound anything like a "business meeting".
Following this, I was asked how I felt about the position where people are now being asked to respect and support further rules to contain Covid-19. Would people abide by them given recent revelations?
I reflected on why I had done my bit over the last 20 months to honour the requests made of us and to follow the rules laid down: As Torbay’s MP I should do what I ask of others, our local NHS teams who were on the frontline had asked us to support them by staying at home and curtailing many activities we normally enjoy, plus we would not be able to look forward if we did not win the fight against the deadliest threat to face our Bay since the darkest days of the 1940s.
Yet ultimately, I did my bit because I wanted to protect those I love and care about. My Dad is in the shielding group and lives in a local care home, Hazel is close to a group for which isolation was strongly advised. It was all too obvious what could happen if they caught this early on, especially before vaccination was available.
Whatever anyone’s views on the events of recent weeks, the Prime Minister, my party or any other political figures or groups, the requests being made of us to do our bit are there to protect those we care about, even if it appears a few who should have known better did not do theirs.
With less than two weeks to go I will not be the only person who still has a few items left to buy for Christmas.
Luckily, there are a range of independent businesses across our Bay selling everything from train sets to tool kits, with many having unique products which could be an extra special gift this Christmas. The even better bit is when buying from a local business you may not only find something unique, but make a difference locally as well. It is estimated buying items from a local business, instead of from national chains, can see up to double the amount of your spending stay within the local community.
If you are still to get all your shopping done for Christmas, do give some of the local stores across our bay a try, perhaps combined with stopping into an independent coffee shop or café for a drink whilst doing so.
My next surgeries are: Saturday December 18, 11am till 1pm at Torquay Library, Lymington Road, Torquay TQ1 3DT and Saturday January 8, 2022, 11am till 1pm at 5-7 East St, Torquay, TQ2 5SD. Sadly, my surgeries must remain appointment only at this stage given the prevailing public health guidance.
For an appointment you can either email me at email@example.com or leave a message on 01803 214989. You can also drop into my office at 5-7 East St, Torquay, TQ2 5SD between 10am & 1pm Monday to Friday, please note you may have to wait outside if others attend at the same time.
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