Support our NHS

I WRITE to tell you of my experience with our NHS workers in Winchester RHCH.

We couldn’t enter the hospital to visit, in order to support the increase in their safety measures, due to the viruses.

To provide items needed for my father, I was advised to go to the reception desk, following the precautions of masking and hand gels.

Simply entering the front door though showed how many staff a hospital employs. Along corridors, elevators, reception, shop and much more on wards (unseen), in theatres and no doubt essential offices.

So, yes if a virus homes in zooming like a bumble bee seeking nectar and pollen, the petals can bloom too.

To communicate with my father, I thank all staff, particularly the ward clerk who set up a zoom session, enabling us to wave and chat, at least. The clerk had to set up the system on lap top, dress herself in gowns, masks and gloves. I mentioned I could wait a day, but no she insisted setting up with success!

So, we are all fortunate with our technology for communication, however I have now experienced the difficulties suffered, particularly by those following losses the virus has and still is causing.

So let’s follow the orders, all do our best, to support our National Health Service to enhance all our lives and futures. Stay safe!

Linda Price

Fyfield village

No Mask hostility

I HAD the great good fortune to contract Covid-19 earlier on 2020. I suffered the type known as long-Covid and it gave me a continuous cough for two to three months, all day, every day, and often through the night. As a result my lungs are cursed with a condition known as pulmonary fibrosis, meaning that they are all scarred up inside and just don’t work very well anymore. This means that I cannot wear a face mask.

I have found shop-keepers and most other shoppers very understanding but have met with hostility on several occasions. The worst by far being in the Chantry Centre, when somebody seemingly working for the company managing the site took it upon herself to berate me most publicly, even though I explained very carefully what my particular problem was.

I simply write to ask that if any sensible adult is not wearing a mask as required ... I am in my sixties and rather past the rebel-without-a-cause stage of life ... then they probably have good reason. I have pulmonary fibrosis, my cousin has bad asthma, other people may have other health problems. Please accept that we are not wearing masks because we cannot.

John Solomon

Sunnyside Close, Charlton

‘Kinder’ politics

I LIE in my Hospital bed in Winchester, it is 7.25pm with 2021 soon approaching, recovering from Covid 19 and Sepsis. The staff here have been of the highest calibre with out exception, with out them I may not be writing to you now.

I have had much comfort from my family, friends but what has shown me the kindness of human spirit at this time of year is that the RT Hon Councillor for the Romans Nick Matthew’s and former Winton Councillor Jan Budzskinsy have been calling to check on my welfare as good representatives of the local community do.

The current representatives for Winton Ward, appear to have not made a squeak about the pandemic, Rowles did put up a fence in the rain, so he is working to the best of his abilities. But his gold chain is dearer to him than the local people.

The lesson here I feel is that in 2021, a return to a more traditional, kinder, local politics would be a refreshing change from the last couple of years.

Kind Regards and a Happy New Year to All.

Luke Hysted

Elm Bank Road, Andover

A ‘clean slate’

The imaginary 2020 yearbook has taken its place on the bookshelf of life and can be readily dipped into for memories good and not so good for there have been more worries this year than ever before. This explains why the book is so much bigger this time. Most of the chapters reference Covid19. No mention of the previous 18!

I feel there will be a good number of pages filled with peace, hope and reflection. Healthy ones hopefully.

The new 2021 volume is already to hand and contains blank pages that will soon begin to accommodate the every day story of this country boy and his wife Jenny commencing with Chapter 1 - January.

January was named after the Roman God Janus who had two faces - one looking forward and one looking backward.

One looking forward to the challenges and the hoped for achievements in the year ahead particularly regarding leaving the EU which is immediately ahead of us. The other aware of the knowledge and experience as well as the lessons learnt that the old year had provided.

A new year always refreshes the mind and clears the decks. A clean slate initially encourages higher expectation levels and several new opportunities and experiences.

Commencing 2021 a positive resolve takes hold regarding the New Year resolutions. My willpower soon goes out the window and maybe the best resolution is not to make any at all.

Like many people, every year brings joy and sadness, the making of new acquaintances and the passing of old friends.

Cherished memories that will never die. Life is too short and accelerating! Will the new year be productive and full of achievement or will there be wasted opportunities to bemoan?

Talking of the town in 2021 there seems to be a total revamp in the offing. Andover New Town will be born.

At the moment the waterway beneath the High Street must be bursting to come to the surface.

With this in mind a silvery stream traversing the High Street with the monumental cenotaph standing proudly centrepiece would be a magnificent tribute to the past and to future progressive thinking from our council.

Here’s wishing a hearty and very healthy new year to all in 2021 especially the editorial staff for putting up with my missives!!! I raise a glass to all!!

John Porter

Millway Road, Andover

Essential workers

With most places closed except essential shops, I would love to say a big thank you to the staff who man: the convenience stores; corner shops; Waitrose, Sainsburys, Tesco, Asda, Lidl, Co -op, Morrison’s, Aldi, Iceland, Holland & Barret, opticians, dentists, chemist and their delivery drivers; the security guards on most shops - those people we simple don’t see as we rush into the shops, yet they provide an essential service during these worrying times.

Whilst writing, I would like to also thank all our Post Men and Women, who trudge up and down delivering mail, even if it at times it’s only flyers. I don’t know the names of the delivery drivers, that bring hot takeaways to our doors, from Dominoes, Showboat, the different Chinese and Indian Take Aways, but they too do a sterling job often in the dark, walking around dimly lit stairwells, searching with their torches.

No thank you would be complete, without acknowledging the cleaners in the town centre,or Neighbour Care voluntary drivers, and indeed the towns taxi drivers, putting their own health at risk, to get us from Point A to Point B. Let us not forget our Train Drivers and Guards and all Bus Drivers.

My thanks go out to all the international, national, and local men and women, that are out there, bringing us up to date news, or commenting on news items, live on the tv radio and for their own newspapers. Last but by no means least, where would we be without our newspapers? So thank you to all the newspaper delivery boys on their cycles getting the papers to our letter boxes.

Manuela Wahnon

Attitude of Gratitude campaigner