Food supply and home deliveries

There is plenty of food but still some problems getting enough into shops. There is a shortage of home delivery capacity for the elderly and ill needing that.

I have put the issue to Ministers again and asked that they broker further talks between the catering and supermarket companies over diverting food from catering packs to retail packs, and possible use of catering delivery assets and drivers to shift more for supermarkets. The government should suspend competition rules to allow collaboration.

Now most non food shops are closing the government could also ask the logistics companies shifting non foods to shops to see what they could do to boost food deliveries, and to see if some of the home delivery capacity of non foods could be used for foods.

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  1. glen cullen
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    My brother is a food logistics consultant, he informs me that they know the daily consumption rate in any given area and the food supply and delivery has remained constant….it’s the buying behaviour that’s changed

    There’s enough food and deliveries its just the idiots that are multi buying beyond the norm and only in certain areas

    However delivery companies are a network that don’t just deliver food goods, so when non-food shops close that multi delivery company has to readjust its schedules and lay-off truck drivers therefore there will be a knock on effect to all deliveries as the whole network is reduced

    Reply There’s also a big switch from caterers to shops as people no longer eat out. That increases retail food demand whilst cutting catering food

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

      Also we are instructed to shop as seldom as possible. So we are doing bigger, fewer shops as instructed!

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted March 24, 2020 at 11:25 pm | Permalink

        Lynn that is more difficult now as they have limited certain things to only two per customer. I don’t know about you but two bottles of tonic don’t last long in our house when you like a long glass on G&T. We also get through a lot of yoghurt and milk so I have yo shop fairly frequently.

    • Ian Wragg
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

      My neighbor works logistics for a large pub chain. They have millions of pounds worth of chilled and dried food for sale. Some entrepreneurs could make a fortune repacking and selling on to small outlets.

    • acorn
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

      Morrisons Group are making up £35 retail boxes and using DPD and the like for delivery. This should be mandated by Boris across the food sector. The two metre barrier can be maintained through the supply chain.

      • Cheshire Girl
        Posted March 25, 2020 at 6:34 am | Permalink

        My Son and I tried to get one of those boxes. They had no delivery slots. However your suggestion is a very good one.

      • Al
        Posted March 25, 2020 at 9:26 am | Permalink

        There are local milkrounds and similar who already serve many areas, yet there’s no sign of the government linking up with them. A couple of pints of milk, a loaf, and a pack of eggs on the doorstep every day or two would make things much easier for many of the vulnerable who have to self-isolate.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 7:29 pm | Permalink

      Also many people want more stock, so they do not have to shop so often and can reduce their chances of being infected.

  2. Lifelogic
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

    How is the rather more important deliveries of ventilators, medical equipment, virus tests and PPE supplies coming along. Also the emergency training of people to operate them and other medical staff?

    • a-tracy
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

      Yesterday Hancock said they’d increased the number of ventilators from 5000 to 12000 with lots more on the way, don’t you think that’s impressive at all?

      • Fred H
        Posted March 24, 2020 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

        enough for a small town I suppose.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted March 24, 2020 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

        Good – but very many more will be needed, plus all the 24hour staff who can work them (if you look at the numbers currently needing ICU care in Italy). Why oh why was the government so slow to take any serious action? Can the ventilators that vets use be used on humans and can the vets be allowed to assist in using them?

        Let us hope the voluntary actions take by people, several days back will lower the rate of increase again today significantly from the 19% of yesterday.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted March 24, 2020 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

          Alas deaths were up a further 26% in one day today.

          • Lynn Atkinson
            Posted March 24, 2020 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

            Still trying to catch up with the normal spike in annual winter deaths.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted March 24, 2020 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

          How many people are in intensive care in the UK. I cannot find are good figures?

          The health secretary just now said “the more people obey the (distancing) rules the sooner we will get through it”. Rather showing he has rather missed the point.

          The reason for the rules is to delay the spread of the infection so that NHS can (hopefully) cope well with the demand and people do not die (who did not need to die) for lack of ICU facilities. It means it will almost certainly take more time to get through it and not less time!

          • Stred
            Posted March 25, 2020 at 10:25 am | Permalink

            Unfortunately, the Chinese found out that the ventilators didn’t work for older and vulnerable patients. That’s why it’s important to stay isolated and take precautions to stop the virus coming in on food and mail.

      • Iain Gill
        Posted March 24, 2020 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

        sounds suspicious, apart from the extra ones they have gained by signing up private hospitals (which are not really new), and the ones taken from vets, where have the rest come from?

        • Al
          Posted March 25, 2020 at 9:33 am | Permalink

          According to the press, there’s a doctor in Wales who has developed a ventilator specifically for Covid-19 (the Covid Emergency Ventilator) that can be built and dispatched in a day. I suspect they have provided much of the increase.

          With Doctors like Dr Alain Gauthier working out how to use one ventilator for nine people, increasing capacity by 2.4 times seems quite reasonable.

          • Iain Gill
            Posted March 25, 2020 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

            using one ventilator for multiple people will only work if they are exactly the same body size, and will probably only be used in extremes for far fewer patients say 2 or 3, plus risk of cross infections rises significantly so not ideal unless real combat medicine.

            PA Consulting are running the ventilator procurement for the govt, and they are clueless, so expect many mistakes and messups. So far only real order has been to make an existing NHS ventilator type in another production facility in quantity.

            But none of these are actually available now.

      • The Prangwizard
        Posted March 25, 2020 at 8:45 am | Permalink

        He said they had been purchased or maybe he used the word ordered, but he did not say they had been delivered or received.

    • SM
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

      No point in keeping people alive if they then die of starvation, is there?

      • Lifelogic
        Posted March 24, 2020 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

        It is quite hard to die of starvation, it takes quite a while. You do not need that much food to keep alive.

        • Iain Gill
          Posted March 24, 2020 at 10:45 pm | Permalink

          depends on your medical condition

        • Cheshire Girl
          Posted March 25, 2020 at 6:30 am | Permalink

          I have been trying to get a food delivery for several days. All of the supermarkets have no slots, no matter how early in the morning one gets up to try. I am in the vulnerable elderly group, and am supposed to stay at home. I heard on the news a few days ago that there would be emergency food deliveries for people who are in my category. I live in an Assisted Care retirement complex. If I insist on going out to buy food, I risk bringing the virus back to the other residents here, so thats not an option.

          I suspect there are people up and down the country who are like me. some of them living alone in private homes. I wish the supermarkets well in the enormous effort they are making to address this problem.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted March 24, 2020 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

        Buy a huge bag of dried chick peas or beans, a gallon tin of olive oil, there is plenty of wild garlic all over the place and dandelion leaf etc salads around, load of nettles too, a large bags of flour for flat breads and you will be fine for months. Perhaps plant a few things too – now is a good time.

        This will easily get you through until all the fruits and nuts start falling off the trees. If you want meat then get an air riffle for rabbit or pigeons perhaps?

        • John E
          Posted March 24, 2020 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

          Any ideas on where to get the chick peas or beans or flour? The supermarkets round my way are out of them. I think you’ll find the preppers grabbed them all a while back.
          I’ve been planting potatoes, carrots, beetroot, peas, etc. The salad leaves should be ready in ten weeks so before I’m allowed out again.

        • Original Chris
          Posted March 24, 2020 at 11:23 pm | Permalink

          I cannot get flour anywhere in our area, and it is a myth that the supermarkets are restocking these things. They just say they do not have it and they do not know when it is coming in.

        • SM
          Posted March 25, 2020 at 6:30 am | Permalink

          You really have lost the plot, haven’t you, LL.

        • Cheshire Girl
          Posted March 25, 2020 at 6:31 am | Permalink

          What a ridiculous suggestion! Not helpful at all.

        • The last survivor
          Posted March 26, 2020 at 12:34 am | Permalink

          Lifelogic you are much like me it seems.I don’t fear starving to death it won’t happen. Loads of food about everywhere.

    • Richard
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

      Prevention is better than treatment:
      “Dr. Vladimir Zelenko from New York state announced he has found a treatment against the coronavirus with a 100% success rate on 350 patients… with Hydroxychloroquine and Zinc. His treatment resulted in the shortness of breath issue being resolved in 4 to 6 hours. Dr. Zelenko in his study had zero deaths, zero hospitalizations and zero intubations!”
      Didier Raoult also had 100% success:

      • Original Chris
        Posted March 24, 2020 at 11:21 pm | Permalink

        The recommended treatment package also includes azithromycin, a powerful antibiotic to deal with the likely secondary chest infections.

      • Stred
        Posted March 25, 2020 at 10:19 am | Permalink

        Has the NHS ordered any chloroquine, or is it considering trials and consulting NICE? We can’t afford to change procedures in the centrally controlled monolith can we?

  3. Lifelogic
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    Coronavirus: Sadiq Khan warns ‘stop Tube travel or more will die’

    Rather a change from telling everyone how perfectly save it was and how it was being cleaned by “hospital grade” cleaning solutions that he told everyone just a few days back.

    Finally these dopes are getting real what has taken them so long?

    • stred
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

      Khant doesn’t seem to have realised that if LT runs fewer trains for the people going to work then the trains get more crowded. Maybe he thinks that everyone living in London works in clubs, pubs, restaurants, and clothes shops. The driver is the luckiest person on the train in a sealed cab in the front away from the passengers coughing who pass the virus it down the single compartment behind. Now he’s telling the passengers who want to work to stay at home. You would think he would understand these things , what with his dad being a bus driver.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted March 24, 2020 at 4:18 pm | Permalink

        His dad probably had more sense than he does. He was telling people how wonderfully safe the Tube was and was being cleaned with hospital grade cleaners a few days back.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted March 25, 2020 at 9:12 am | Permalink

          Khan does not have the emergency powers that the Government does.

          He can go no further in shutting down things than their instructions dictate.

  4. Everhopeful
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    Are we in lockdown?
    I really am not sure.
    Buses are running.
    Neighbours going to work.
    People are surprised when I cancel appointments and I have to EXPLAIN.
    Seems like a general holiday for kids out playing.
    Can someone throw some light on this?

  5. Iain Gill
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

    pharmacies struggling to get medicine to people who are not supposed to leave the house.

    why dont we just give that job to the local taxi companies that have no other work?

    • Cheshire Girl
      Posted March 25, 2020 at 6:37 am | Permalink

      Thats a great suggestion. Taxi companies could, if they wanted, show their community spirit.

    • a-tracy
      Posted March 26, 2020 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

      It would have been cheaper for the government and more useful to redeploy self-employed taxi drivers to deliver pharmacy and food deliveries locally in routes than just pay everyone for nothing, I hope they volunteer now or my faith in human nature will disappear.

      • Iain Gill
        Posted March 27, 2020 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

        they need money for fuel and to feed their children!

  6. Lynn Atkinson
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

    Burger King have just announce that in spite of the £25k per branch cash grant and no rates, they will not be paying their rent to Landlords. The Govt had prohibited landlords from recovering their property even if these arrears are never paid.

    Can the Govt therefore give landlords commensurate debt forgiveness. On these properties please? Landlords are getting NOTHING presumably assuming that the grant to tenants will mean that rents are paid!

  7. ed2
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

    John, civilization is breaking down, like some dystopian nightmare. In my local area the people are traumatized beyond comprehension, violence, anger. You are a Christian, please act.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted March 25, 2020 at 9:15 am | Permalink

      Pull yourself together for pity’s sake.

      • Cpt Mannering
        Posted March 26, 2020 at 12:26 am | Permalink

        🙂 We are doomed

    • Fred H
      Posted March 26, 2020 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

      I assume Sir John has some good connections – but doubt his clout with the Big guy upstairs is no better than yours.

  8. Steve Reay
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    I can’t get the basics I need to have to try multiple shops , if the government can’t get the basics delivered it will lose confidence of the people. Why can’t the army deliver my bog roll? They surely can’t be that busy?

    • Steve Reay
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

      First priority for tomorrow during my daily walk is to visit 5 shops enroute to seek toilet rolls out, getting a bit desparate, may have to use Metro paper, and I’m not kidding.

      • steve
        Posted March 24, 2020 at 6:49 pm | Permalink


        “After about ten minutes they cut the call off and said try again later.”

        Yeah it’s happening a lot, with the NHS, utilities etc.

      • steve
        Posted March 24, 2020 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

        Steve Reay

        “may have to use Metro paper, and I’m not kidding.”

        Well at least you don’t have to use bank notes……yet.

        • Fred H
          Posted March 24, 2020 at 7:30 pm | Permalink

          Metro will stop – income is only adverts nobody to read them anymore.
          Guardian’s a safe bet, and reading a page or two while doing your business might give you a laugh.

  9. MeSET
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 2:15 pm | Permalink

    No one on God’s Earth would have got everyday people in anyone’s House unless they got a laugh what with what was outside that House in the 1600s…or in the Globe Theatre a well of iniquity

    • Fred H
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

      we’d probably all agree, if we knew what you were writing about.

      • MeSET
        Posted March 25, 2020 at 10:36 am | Permalink

        Of course you would

  10. Lynn Atkinson
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

    Burger King about to receive £12,500,000 tax free from the taxpayer plus £12,500,000 in business rates forgiveness. In addition their staff will receive 80% of their wages. And Burger King refuses to pay the rents but the landlords have to keep paying the mortgages on these shops, many landlords were also forced to pay the fit out costs circa £300,000 per unit.

    Landlords need to receive the rents direct from the Government if they don’t want the banks to go pop again.

    Posted March 24, 2020 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    You’re doing a good job SJR and I’m sure your heart is in the right place.

  12. Lifelogic
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    Useless banks again! I just rang a major UK bank to move some money about (that cannot be done on line) message says waiting time is over an hour due the CORONAvirus. I decide that I had to hold at is was rather important. After about ten minutes they cut the call off and said try again later.

  13. a-tracy
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

    The big problem you’ve got now that everyone whose business has shut thinks they’ll get 80% of salary guaranteed to do nothing for 3 weeks, transferring employed staff will be more difficult. I’d have thought the many self-employed drivers would have been jumping all over this to keep themselves in business? How would they know where to go to get the extra work though and how much would the supermarkets pay them per day?

  14. The Prangwizard
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 3:58 pm | Permalink

    I wish Ministers would answer questions with much greater clarity. When asked about the number of ventilators available the answer came that we started with around 5000 and x number had been purchased. ‘Purchased’ is all very well but how many more have been delivered. Do we still have only 5000? I’m a simple soul and I don’t want to have interpret answers or guess meanings.

    Same goes for test kits.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 25, 2020 at 8:52 am | Permalink

      Indeed never a straight answer just obfuscation.

  15. Alan Jutson
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 4:08 pm | Permalink

    Aware some foods need chilled vans but most food does not need to be chilled at all.

    Why not use a self employed man with a Van he just needs to turn up in the morning and is given a route for deliveries. its not rocket science is it !!

    Good grief its obvious isn’t it.

    The man supplies his own van, his own fuel, provides a copy of his insurance, driving licence his National Insurance number, and a Tax reference. Job done.

    Have tried for 10 days now to get either a home delivery or click and collect, nothing available not even a date in a months time.

    This is getting bloody silly.

    • steve
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 7:28 pm | Permalink


      “This is getting bloody silly.”

      That’s because we have a bloody silly government comprised of bloody silly people advised by bloody silly experts. None of whom live in the real world.

      If they weren’t silly, they’d have slammed the borders firmly shut and closed the airports the instance they knew about this virus. That way they could have developed a strategy while the country was strong and largely uninfected.

      But no, they had to let it in……because the ‘experts’ said so.

      Let the virus in, and then we can see if there’s a way to beat it. You couldn’t make it up.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted March 25, 2020 at 7:17 pm | Permalink

        No, scientists said do all possible to stop it from coming in, and to identify and to isolate those that do, and to trace rigorously contacts.

    • Stred
      Posted March 25, 2020 at 10:09 am | Permalink

      Same with protection equipment for hospitals. Why can’t the NHS just get lorry distribution firms to move the stuff instead of leaving in the warehouse and in the end depending on the army being sent to help by ministers?

  16. forthurst
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

    Supermarket delivery vehicles are refrigerated because they are delivering perishables.
    Catering packs could not be repackaged for retail distribution. Presumably food manufacturers are based on generic product not pack size so they should focus on retail product packs and the excess of catering packs could be absorbed by institutions that can’t close down viz hospitals, prisons, canteens for essential on the job workers.

    • John E
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

      The prisons etc. are already being supplied by the catering suppliers.

  17. Fred H
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

    Just watched the TV news — am staggered how many Police out patrolling streets etc.
    Have a mugging, burglary in progress, juvenile punch-up not a chance of getting one.
    Telephone scams, door-knocking scams, bank fraud – you are on your own.

    Two days later you might get a call – no CCTV follow-up, no prints taken…
    PM gets tough and C.Dick has the lot out in the sun.
    We need a review on what we have Police for.

    Oh of course, to reload cameras and fine/points drivers for 31mph, or getting 2 passenger side tyres stray over the bus lane with nobody in sight…

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

      Exactly right – I know a surgeon who got a ticket for doing 3 MPH too fast in Central London. He was on his was to an emergency operation on a child in Central London. He appealed, got the hospital to confirm this but was told he had to go to some hearing in order to take if further. As that would have meant cancelling other NHS surgery so he had to pay up and take the points on his licence!

      • Stred
        Posted March 25, 2020 at 10:03 am | Permalink

        I have to attend s speed awareness course, costing £100, in May after doing 7 mph over the limit where it reduces at to Thames tunnel. The signs are at low level at the side and lorries or high vans obscure them. It’s a nightmare trying to change lanes to get into the left tunnel anyway, looking in the mirrors all the time. I have a fifty year accident free record. If I don’t take the course then my insurance goes sky high and I can’t afford it. But I can’t go to the course because I am confined. Bet they don’t give a stuff. How I loathe the highway authority and upper ranks of the plod.

      • Sea Warrior
        Posted March 25, 2020 at 10:19 am | Permalink

        A shocking example of poor policing. The cops should have looked at this motoring record first, before taking any action. Those with a clean record really don’t need anything more than a phone call from the local station telling them that an offence has been detected and suggesting that they ease off on the accelerator in future. Action please, Sir John.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 6:55 pm | Permalink

      Ms Dick and the top brass just do photo ops and PR stunts. She even had time to consult her hate crime “experts” over Boris’s post box comments!

    • steve
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

      Fred H

      “We need a review on what we have Police for.”

      Didn’t you know Fred, it’s to fine people a hundred quid when a rear brake light bulb blows and to enforce anti – free speech laws, stuff like that.

      • Fred H
        Posted March 24, 2020 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

        Try driving through London boroughs with below 20mph the maximum. Southwark a great example…speed bumps all over the place -I kid you not. Jaywalkers dash across roads between oodles of buses, take-away moped/ suicide drivers swerve in and out better than Verstappen. Then there’s bus drivers who kindly provide a few nanoseconds as the offside light lights up and they pull out in front of you. Given – on some trips only a handful of pedestrians foul-mouth you for not emergency braking to let them saunter across the road – 20 yards from a crossing. Roads suddenly become one lane, great for cutting us up, white vans screach out of side turnings and wave out of the window giving thanks that you avoided tailending him.
        Police keeping order in Southwark (Brixton. Camberwell Peckham )- you are having a laugh.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted March 25, 2020 at 8:49 am | Permalink

        Indeed also they do like to spend time organising their police force as if they were arranging flowers so as to reflect the local population for gender, sexual orientation, race, religion and the likes. This is it seems far more important than ability to protect the public. They also seem keen on encouraging illegal climate protests at every turn.

        Minister keep saying how we should keep away from GPs and Hospitals as it is out duty “to protect the NHS”. I though we paid vast taxes so the NHS could provide medical services to protect us when we needed them? I must have got it wrong I suppose.

    • John E
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

      I thought we all wanted police patrolling the beat?

  18. Bryan Harris
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

    Supermarkets are trying to help the elderly, but as you say – already run out of slots, and that’s for 3 weeks … Not sure that will improve short term, so physically doing the weekly shop is unavoidable.
    The other issue is that there are still things missing from the shelves, meaning we have to shop around and try different stores – All of this needs to be taken into account before some authoritian figures start to bully people to stay at home.
    Online Health stores are considered vital by many people – I trust special arrangements will be put in place to allow them to stay open – some have already closed down – What can be done for the rest that service orders to maintain our health?

    • Original Chris
      Posted March 25, 2020 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

      Good points, Brian, that the government needs to take notice of pdq.

  19. steve
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 6:44 pm | Permalink


    “There is plenty of food but still some problems getting enough into shops. ”

    Just a minute Mr Redwood Sir, all the big supermarkets said there was no supply problem.

    So either they were lying, or, they’ve been holding stock back in order to capitalise from the situation. ‘Informal rationing’ as you yourself called it.

    Take your pick, but I am extremely angry that my local was very willing to allow swathing hoards of greed buyers to clear the shelves, but rationed those who merely tried to buy what they genuinely needed at the time.

    Fortunately in my area a competitor is due to build a super – supermarket, as and when that happens my current retailer is out of business, serves ’em right.

    As for said greedy people, when all the food they grabbed goes rotten I think they should be made to eat it. Best way to deal with selfishness & gluttony.

    Posted March 24, 2020 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

    Steve Baker. A true libertarian and a politician that this nation desperately needs and now desperately lacks

  21. steve
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 7:18 pm | Permalink

    Matt Hancock said –

    “those who cannot work from home should go to work “to keep the country running”.

    I say – get the shops open and stocked up for those who do work… otherwise we aint gonna work.

    No food, no supplies, no clothing……we don’t work, and why should we?

    People still need a shirt on their backs, shoes on their feet, bread on the table etc.

    Not difficult to grasp.

    I need steel capped boots to do my work, the soles on mine have gone. Because of this government I cannot now simply go out and buy a new pair. Got any answers Johnson, eh ?

    • a-tracy
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 7:35 pm | Permalink

      Order from Amazon Steve. They’re delivering essential items.

      John are ppe businesses allowed to stay open?

    • John E
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 8:33 pm | Permalink

      You can get steel capped boots on Amazon.

    • Know-Dice
      Posted March 25, 2020 at 6:39 am | Permalink


      I needed some silicon sealer today local DIY shop was closed. So, next day delivery from Amazon, was cheaper than a local well known DIY chain… crazy…

    • Lester Beedell
      Posted March 25, 2020 at 11:43 am | Permalink

      Steve, order online?

  22. a-tracy
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

    What is ‘NHS Provider’?
    Are they public sector?
    Do they store and order stock for all England hospitals?
    Are each NHS Trust responsible for their own supplies?
    Do they organise the logistics?

    There is something really wrong, 3M had a warehouse full of PPE on the news yesterday the British transport organisation network can deliver next day by 9am, the pallet networks can, there are only 1254 Hospitals to deliver stocks to, its nothing?

    • a-tracy
      Posted March 24, 2020 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

      I’m sick of seeing NHS Trusts blame the government when I’m sure they’re responsible, if I were Hancock I wouldn’t keep taking this hysteria on C4 news night after night. Get the bosses from the nhs trusts that are short of ppe on answering why they screwed up, we knew about this pandemic months ago, all of us.

  23. Pat
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 7:44 pm | Permalink

    Sir John

    The appalling overcrowding due to reduced service on the Tube will cost many lives of people who have no alternative to using this service.

    If reduced staffing is the cause of reduced service, alternatives must be implemented to restore full service including drafting volunteer staff, retired drivers or service personnel.

    It is probably beyond the remit of London Underground to take these measures, requiring government action.

    Thank you for your efforts

  24. Lynn Atkinson
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

    I remember the British Govt giving hundreds of millions to Robert Mugabe so he could buy the white owned farms that he was threatening to sequestrate. Guess what? He took the farms anyway and kept the money. Rhodesian farmers arrived in the U.K. penniless. Now the government gives hundreds of millions to Corporations so they will pay their rent and staff….

    There is simply an inability to learn in Government. Lucky for the USA Trump knows that the State can NEVER support the whole economy.

  25. ed2
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 8:28 pm | Permalink

    Status of COVID-19
    As of 19 March 2020, COVID-19 is no longer considered to be a high consequence infectious diseases (HCID) in the UK.

    Please explain John.

    • Original Chris
      Posted March 25, 2020 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

      See below for the exact textguidance mentioned by ed2 above.

      My urgent question, Sir John, is why are we therefore having these draconian measures imposed on us, which will cause untold and in some cases irreversible damage to the economy, jobs and livelihoods, not to mention the implications for mental health, and getting health care for other serious conditions – cancer testing and appointments have been put on hold in some cases, I understand.

      The huge stress, strain and anxiety (in addition to all the other problems caused by the govt policy) being caused to so many people, especially the older people who are stuck in care homes and can’t have family to see them, has already resulted in real problems, and all for a non high consequence infectious disease, now apparently classifed on a par with the usual winter flu that occurs in this country.

      “Status of COVID-19

      As of 19 March 2020, COVID-19 is no longer considered to be a high consequence infectious diseases (HCID) in the UK.

      The 4 nations public health HCID group made an interim recommendation in January 2020 to classify COVID-19 as an HCID. This was based on consideration of the UK HCID criteria about the virus and the disease with information available during the early stages of the outbreak. Now that more is known about COVID-19, the public health bodies in the UK have reviewed the most up to date information about COVID-19 against the UK HCID criteria. They have determined that several features have now changed; in particular, more information is available about mortality rates (low overall), and there is now greater clinical awareness and a specific and sensitive laboratory test, the availability of which continues to increase.

      The Advisory Committee on Dangerous Pathogens (ACDP) is also of the opinion that COVID-19 should no longer be classified as an HCID.”

      • stop it
        Posted March 26, 2020 at 12:51 am | Permalink

        The elite are just about to exterminate the elderly. Amazing as it sounds, that is what is happening right now.

  26. MeSET
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

    If I were a socialist I would be using the foulest language possible to say It is not going to work. I’m on our side. It is not going to work!Though you all mean well, I know.
    We must return to work, all of us,soon, or there will be tragedies, I feel, in my opinion.
    I’m okay. I’m….erm….lucky

  27. everyone knows
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

    John, my business is going down the plug hole and your own government website said it downgraded COVID-19 to a NON high consequence infectious disease on March 19th, only reported by one newspaper in the entire world! ….

    This must now end TOMORROW. Mike Pompeo is on twitter saying it is “a live excercise” and Trump replied “I wish someone told me”,

  28. everyone knows
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 10:39 pm | Permalink

    United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had a slip of the tongue while addressing the American people from the White House when he stated that COVID-19 is a live military exercise.

    “This is not about retribution,” Pompeo explained. “This matter is going forward — we are in a live exercise here to get this right.”

  29. agricola
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 11:14 pm | Permalink

    Having read your submission and many of the experiences on the ground from replies I conclude that the problem is the result of panic buying by a large element of the general public. It happens at Christmas with unfailing regularity in the UK. The same people have just found another excuse.

    It happened to a minor extent here in Spain and then Benidorm emptied back to the UK and everything was back to normal. There is a big difference in what people buy . The Spanish buy fresh and cook. Brits in the UK buy preprepared food ready for the microwave. The Spanish buy two days ahead, the Brits around a week ahead.

    I went to Carrefour on monday to buy the items that Lidl don’t stock. The shelves were full. The only thing I could not find was Marmite, but I didn’t expect to find it. They had plenty of Bovril to my surprise. There was absolutely no shortage of fish, shellfish, meat, cheese, charcuterie, fruit ,vegetables. and bread. The shop had taped off all clothing and white goods. They gave us sanitized trolleys and plastic gloves. Everywhere customers might congregate was marked off with 2 metre segregations. On the whole it was a very pleasant shopping experience but a touch surreal when you understood the underlying reasons.

    My conclusion was that the supply chain was working well when not being subjected to marauding Brits, panic buying. Even toilet rolls were available, but as most have bidets demand is not so high. I think the Brits need to learn how to eat, cook and shop which is surprising when you add up the cooking programmes on tv. If they can’t learn and quickly then rationing is the only answer. This blatant ignorant greed will lead to price increases, the law of supply and demand plus opportunism.

  30. ed2
    Posted March 24, 2020 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

    or maybe not deep state, maybe the deep state is just the MSM?

  31. Grrrrr
    Posted March 25, 2020 at 2:47 am | Permalink

    The lesson is, stop overcrowding our island. We are full!

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted March 25, 2020 at 7:23 pm | Permalink

      Russia is vast, with huge empty expanses.

      They have an epidemic of coronavirus too.

      • Edward2
        Posted March 25, 2020 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

        Concentrated in just a few areas.

        • hefner
          Posted March 26, 2020 at 10:00 am | Permalink

          … like the towns interspersed along major railway lines?

          • Edward2
            Posted March 26, 2020 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

            Yes like that.
            Huge continent much of it sparsly populated.

      • Fred H
        Posted March 26, 2020 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

        the KGB visit everywhere, not just SALISBURY.

  32. Another Country
    Posted March 25, 2020 at 3:28 am | Permalink

    Nothing to do with Vikings. My previous comment was a joke.
    There are 130 confirmed cases in Sheffield, out of a local population of 582,506
    So what is it with Sheffield????? Are underlying rocks/water/sediment anything to do with it?If the trend continues it may not be due to even concentration of population.” the city nestles in a natural amphitheatre created by several hills and the confluence of five rivers: Don, Sheaf, Rivelin, Loxley and Porter.” A thing for a biochemist to take samples perhaps. Gosh I would love that job and testing the soils on he banks.!! I would really.
    There are 14 confirmed cases in Bradford, out of a local population of 537,173
    There are 42 confirmed cases in Leeds, out of a local population of 789,194
    Nothing to do with Vikings (prev comment was just a joke )
    There are 7 confirmed cases in Middlesbrough, out of a local population of 140,545
    There are 12 confirmed cases in Stockton-on-Tees, out of a local population of 197,213
    There are 41 confirmed cases in Liverpool, out of a local population of 494,814
    There are 41 confirmed cases in Manchester, out of a local population of 547,627
    There are 3 confirmed cases in Hartlepool, out of a local population of 93,242
    There are 18 confirmed cases in County Durham, out of a local population of 526,980

  33. Sea Warrior
    Posted March 25, 2020 at 8:11 am | Permalink

    I have one mother, five aunties and two uncles over 70, so they’re now ‘locked-down’. Before this, none, I believe, used home delivery of groceries. One had shopping done for them by children; the others all managed. All, have children near by who are able to do shopping trips for them now. And all are able to pay their bills.
    Another relative, an amputee, used home-delivery in the past but now can’t get delivery slots. But she is able to get to a supermarket and do her own shopping – as long as the fit and healthy haven’t cleared the shelves!
    Half of the above group need medications. One, certainly, used the NHS delivery service; now, they all will need to.
    – Government should resist the impulse to throw free money at this group. Their major cash problem right now is finding things to spend money on.
    – Some expansion of home delivery of groceries is needed, but not as much as might be supposed. Priority for existing capacity needs to be given to the elderly and vulnerable. Commercial operations are best placed to deliver the services.
    – Supermarkets need to have reserved hours for key workers and the ‘vulnerable’ under-70. Most supermarkets seem to be doing this.
    – A substantial increase in the medicines-delivery service is needed.
    P.S. The quarantining discipline by this group has been exemplary.

  34. Original Chris
    Posted March 25, 2020 at 11:39 am | Permalink

    Our supermarkets have stopped taking online and click and collect orders due to being overwhelmed. There are supposed to be special dispensation for the elderly/at risk/special needs but there is no way you can register this on the websites, and it is IMPOSSIBLE to get through on the helplines to talk to anyone. Just BT messages that effectively say that the system overwhelmed and please try again later. Emails reassuring us that “we are here to help you and we will ensure that we help those at risk, self isolating..” are utterly meaningless as the reality is somewhat different.

    Are you aware that in some areas the supermarkets are simply not taking any more online orders or click and collect? I spent a large part of yesterday just trying to find somewhere that would take online or click and collect orders and I was unsuccessful. Local small shops are very low on stock and some basics do not seem to be replenished.

    If your household is made up of 2 over 70s with serious cardiac condition and lung problems, and and individual with special needs, how are they supposed to cope? The lockdown has put the final nail in the coffin, and the system seems to be grinding to a halt.
    I do not believe the politicians’ reassurances simply because they are not matched by reality.

    I think Boris has no idea of what he has unleashed. He seems to be out of his depth, which is not helped by the quality of scientific advice he is getting, in my view.

    • Original Chris
      Posted March 25, 2020 at 11:45 am | Permalink

      PS to the above, the latest from our local shop is that the main suppliers are simply not delivering the stock now (basic necessities) because they have run out.

  35. gyges
    Posted March 25, 2020 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    Are any of the supermarkets running volunteer delivery schemes where someone driving past on their way home from work could do a delivery?

    Is this sensible or would it just spread the disease … thoughts anyone?

  36. a-tracy
    Posted March 25, 2020 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    BBC “Businesses that are allowed to stay open under the strict new guidelines include supermarkets, banks, pharmacies, post offices, corner shops or market stalls selling food and restaurants that offer a takeaway service.”

    What about Transport companies? If we all just look out for ourselves none of these places would remain open for long, there would be no online anything. Give a thought people for those that are trying to keep pushing on often with family members who want them to stay off work. Someone has to provide logistics decisions, deliveries, we are trying our best.

  37. a-tracy
    Posted March 25, 2020 at 1:38 pm | Permalink

    Talking about timing, why are the overhead gantries on the M1 on clear motorways speed limit down to 40 mph, nothing in the road, nothing broken down? Two junctions long are they on a timer rather than being smart?

  38. Gareth Warren
    Posted March 27, 2020 at 9:09 am | Permalink

    This crises has caused many people to start using a food delivery service, I suspect many will continue to use one once the emergency ends.

    My main concern is that much of this emergency money being hurriedly spent will in effect cause people to stay in non-optimal jobs after the crises and in the longterm hurt the economy by unintentionally restricting choice trying to preserve jobs that are no longer needed.

  • About John Redwood

    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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