Dear Constituent

Over the last few days I have been in  regular contact with the government trying to get improvements in a wide range of areas, and seeking better information about where we are in fighting the virus and expanding NHS capacity.

Let me reassure that currently the local NHS  has some spare Intensive care beds, following a doubling of its capacity to handle the virus. It also has well advanced plans to expand capacity further, should this prove necessary. It would do so  in two phases, leading to  possible additional doubling of capacity. This would lead to a 300% increase on the starting position.

The most important  thing is to try to bring the death rate down. As there are still no generally recognised and adopted cures the best way to get the death rate down is for all vulnerable people to self isolate for as long as is needed  whilst the epidemic is still widespread. The NHS has notified people whose other medical conditions make them more vulnerable to the severe version of the disease. The elderly are also more at risk.

I have held phone calls  with Wokingham Borough Council and seen West Berkshire’s work to marshall volunteers and help provide delivery services to those who are self isolated at home. West Berkshire sets it  out through .Wokingham refers those needing help to

I have also lobbied government over the national NHS Volunteers scheme. requesting that it includes help for people self isolating who cannot get out to shop or who need some telephone or social media contact.

I have contributed proposals on food supply to speed switching food from catering contracts to supermarket shelves. It is good to see more full shelves and a better range of products available, There were too many empty shelves during the  week or so of maximum purchases when many people decided to stock up at the same time as many others needed to buy more to eat at home instead of having a school or work lunch. I would like to thank all those who have been growing, packing, transporting and selling the food to us in  the shops. They have done a great job in difficult circumstances. I hope constituents will remember to thank them and recognise the problems they have encountered through no fault of the businesses and staff concerned. There was plenty of food available overall but demand shot up to include individual stockpiling and it took time to switch some of the catering supplies.

I pressed successfully for schemes to offer state financial support for companies to keep staff on that no longer are allowed to work, and  for the self employed who are banned from earning a living. I do not normally favour state subsidies to business , but do think this is an entirely unprecedented situation. The government is preventing people and companies from earning a living for public health reasons and to help the NHS, so the state should offer money to pay   the basic  bills during the period when work is prohibited.

Unfortunately the wide ranging and seemingly generous schemes outlined by the Chancellor were slow to come into effect and had various restrictions in the small print which requires change. This week saw some welcome alterations to the bank lending schemes, insufficient changes to eligibility for the furlough and self employed schemes, and little progress with speeding it all  up. I am pressing ever harder. If companies cannot access cash to keep people on they will make them redundant. If the self employed have no income they may have to abandon their business and seek  Universal Credit.

I pressed for the government to publish regular updates of how many people need hospital and intensive care treatment for Covid 19 and how much spare capacity the system has. As one of the main aims of the lock down is to buy time for the NHS to be able to cope with the epidemic it is good to see these numbers now, to see there is spare capacity and to see substantial new capacity  being   opened  in major centres against continuing rises in numbers. What we now all want to see is a falling off in the increase in the seriously ill as the impact of lock down is felt. As  fewer people pass the virus on to vulnerable people who could get the serious version that requires hospital support, so we should see benefits from the policy.  

I am quite clear that the damage being done to jobs, companies and the self employed is large. We need to get out of lock down as soon as possible. I hope these severe measures soon bring the relief we want to see. I am making proposals of how we could relax the restrictions later this month to rescue the  economy, whilst still continuing to give maximum protection to all those who are particularly vulnerable to this epidemic.

Thank you for all you are doing to help bring this to an end.

John Redwood

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  1. Mark B
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:23 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    Here is an example of an MP at work being able to talk to power and get things done. Unlike that we see and heat in Italy (EU) where the Italian government has been fined for helping a business and has had its hands tied whilst seeking to deal with the situation there.

    This is why I voted Leave ! To give voice and power to those who represent us and act in our best interests. The EU model has failed, and will continue to do so. It is top down and unresponsive. So glad we are Leaving.

    . . . the best way to get the death rate down is for all vulnerable people to self isolate . . .

    Not the rest of the population !

    • Everhopeful
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:06 am | Permalink

      Let us just hope that all of this is not a precursor to ultra globalisation.
      Have you read Raab in the Telegraph?

      • Mark B
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:50 am | Permalink

        Never let a good crisis go to waste 😉

        • Hope
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:02 am | Permalink

          JR, is a conscientious conservative. A pity he is in such a minority among his left wing socialist govt.

          No testing in and out the country like South Korea. The UK, because of PHE, allowed and allows open borders without quarantine or checks from hotspot countries while telling the public ” it will do whatever it takes!” The sheer dishonesty of this Govt is beyond any reasonable persons civic duty to help it.

          Robert Buckland govt minister making it clear yesterday convicted criminals being treated better than the rest of us under house arrest, with Hancock continuing to make his threats towards us. Does Buckland realise how many families live in high rise flats in cramped conditions while letting out the 4,000 convicts into the community with the rediculous caveat they will be forced back if they commit further crime! Why let them out!

          People living in some high rise flats cannot comply with social distancing in getting out of their flats!

          There is no confidence in PHE therefore it and the top honchos must go. Same for Environment Agency following their appalling response last month from the flooding.

          • steve
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:30 am | Permalink


            “No testing in and out the country like South Korea.”

            Well you see, a certain EU country hogged all the test kits and PPE, funny, that.

            Spare deck chair ?

            “The sheer dishonesty of this Govt is beyond any reasonable persons civic duty to help it.”

            Indeed so. This is why we’ll be going for the throat, as it were, at the next general election.

          • Hope
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

            JR, tell us why Hancock is threatening us again today by saying we will not be allowed to exercise while his ministerial colleague Buckland defies all logic by letting out convicted criminals who could be better quarantined in prison under a change of rules to protect their safety?

            Channel 4 had a ridiculous piece about the families of a murderer and drug dealer worried about them in prison! Prison should not be a hotel to FaceTime or telephone family each day, that is part of the punishment to be locked up! I feel sorry for the victims of their crimes.

          • JoolsB
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

            Totally agree Hope. It does seem to make a farce of the whole thing keeping us all under virtual house arrest and the economy going to hell in a handcart whilst at the same time people are still arriving in their droves from around the world without going into quarantine.

      • BOF
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:01 am | Permalink

        Yes, a good pitch for globalisation with no comments allowed!

        £544M For international response. Is this out of the Int dev fund or in addition? Why have we not redirected the £14B to support our own country?

        • Hope
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

          The last budget did not change overseas aid give away or billions to EU overseas aid, £20 billion each year, a large that could help the overwhelmed public services that most of the public want. Mass immigration continued for ten years against Tory Govt policy, how could that be so?

          Johnson on a dodgy paid Caribbean holiday over Christmas while MSM highlighting NHS being overwhelmed with patients on trolleys, where was his save the NHS mantra then, only a couple of months ago while Chinese diggers on TV frantically building hospitals!

          The govt response woefullly slow, flip flop of strategy, PHE unable to coordinate bugger all for what appears to be left wing centralisation political reasons. It did not even learn from the shortcomings of its 2016 exercise. Allowing thousands in each week from virus hotspots to infect and spread the disease knowing people would die!

          • Hope
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

            We just had the propaganda briefing by Hancock.

            Prof Neil Ferguson in TV today saying possibly only a third of those entering the country from virus hotspots around the world were traced! What does this make of the statistics? What does it say about Hancock’s double standards and hypocritical threats today?

            Why cannot prisoners be quarantined in Prison? If people can be quarantined from cruise ships in Liverpool why not prisoners?

            I do not believe the stats, I do not believe the govt has told the truth over its actions and I fail to see why the economy should be wrecked by the idiots in Govt whose sole purpose is to grab a headline by a three word strap lines like the expense scandal we have rules for the public and different rules for Hancock, Johnson, prisoners, keeping open borders to allow people to fly in from virus hotspots.

            If prisoners are allowed out to see their families then so should law abiding citizens. Allowing them out goes against the advice given today by the medical officer Harries standing alongside Hancock why one household cannot visit another! Is Buckland listening?

            And the biggest lie- protect our NHS! Moreover this episode shows it needs radical reform in its management.

    • oldtimer
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:40 am | Permalink

      Good points. I have not heard from my (recently elected) MP.

      One other fundamental point demonstrated by the lockdown and it’s consequences is the absolute importance of the market economy, the “hidden hand” we all take for granted. If the government wants as fast a recovery as possible for the domestic economy it will need to deregulate. It would be helpful to get your ideas on this.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:23 am | Permalink

      You propose indefinite apartheid for the elderly and for the infirm young and old alike.

      That is unacceptable.

      S. Korea has dome what this country should have done weeks earlier, and what the global scientific community begged it to do, and it is in nothing like the mess that the UK now is – and the US.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:56 am | Permalink

        You really have no idea of what Apartheid was do you? In English ‘Separate Development’ along racial lines because that’s what the ruling Afrikaaners (bred from a mix of European nations and specifically distinct from the ‘English’ in SA) wanted.

        • Saw one!
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:11 am | Permalink

          Are you a school teacher?

          • Lynn Atkinson
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:22 pm | Permalink


        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:44 am | Permalink

          Yeah, yeah, yeah.

          Sometimes people are not literal, nor do they need to be.

          Reasonable folk understand this.

          • Fred H
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

            reasonable people don’t use the dismissive ‘yeah yeah yeah’ .
            I associate that with ignorance.

          • Martin in Cardiff
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

            So do I when others do it, Fred.

          • Edward2
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

            No one has ever said “yeah yeah yeah” as a sarcastic dismissive response on here.
            Another first from you Martin.

        • BillM
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 9:37 am | Permalink

          It is a mere turn of phrase.
          Once a feature of our internationally acclaimed “British sense of humour”.
          Will you and your like stop this debilitating PC approach to all things in life? Or do you really want Britishness to be dead and buried?

      • Freddie H
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:10 am | Permalink

        apartheid or separation?
        have you no idea of the difference? Oh dear!

      • steve
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:23 am | Permalink


        Well said.

      • Roy Grainger
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

        So in your world we’d be in week 8 of a lockdown ? And how many people do you think would be observing it ?

    • MPC
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:24 am | Permalink

      If Johnson was panicked by Imperial College into a lockdown he will be reluctant to lift it for fear of being accused of flip flopping. It’s becoming clearer what’s needed. There’s no real evidence of the virus – of itself – killing younger people, only assertions. So allow a return to work with a right to request home working if it’s feasible, by those unsure of their underlying condition. If not possible by some employers make furlough payments far more generous as there would be fewer claims and it would be less expensive overall. Preserve full lockdown for elderly and infirm. Some sort of objective to start this by end May at the latest would stabilise markets and slow the ruination of businesses, private pensions and savings.

      • Roy Grainger
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

        That whole Imperial College panic narrative is rubbish, likewise the herd immunity debate. The government has never changed policy – their policy was always to impose restrictions when the curve started rising which is exactly what they did. Anyone watching the press conferences rather than reading drivel in the Daily Mail would know this. The reason they didn’t impose restrictions earlier was because they knew the longer restrictions went on the less people would observe them – the evidence for this view is already apparent – so there was no point having the period of maximum compliance at a time when there were relatively few cases.

        • Stred
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 9:11 am | Permalink

          If you believe that you will believe anything. The herd immunity policy was agreed with the nudgers because they thought it would work better to hasten the infection. This was also tried in Holland and still is in Sweden. It was ‘Don’t worry. We have a fantastic NHS that will deal with it’. Then various epidemiologists pointed out that this was against the usual policy used by the rest of the world, followed by the calculations of Imperial that put an upper finger for letting it rip of half a million deaths of the not too sick to live longer and anyone over seventy, many of whom vote Conservative.
          The policy suddenly went in the opposite direction and is tightening. The NHS had not prepared the extra facilities and had to bring in private consultants and the army to work wonders building the Nightingales. They did not take the initiative and send protection for health workers without an order coming through the system, endangering health workers.
          The whole scramble to catch up has been to prevent the NHS collapsing under the likely numbers. They may just do so, at the expense of staff, if we are lucky.

          • Stred
            Posted April 6, 2020 at 9:14 am | Permalink

            Figure not finger. Smart alteration.

    • glen cullen
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:38 am | Permalink

      Correct – before covid19 if you’d got the flu you’d go to bed for 2 weeks

  2. Everhopeful
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:55 am | Permalink

    So are we now in “lock down” with illness/death figures roughly those of seasonal flu, to AVOID an epidemic?
    To save the “health service” that is presumably there for the very purpose of treating illness and saving lives? (ie why we and our parents and grandparents FORCIBLY paid into it).
    It should be very simple…you go down with whatever lurgi.
    You are IMMEDIATELY taken to hospital and put in ISOLATION ( in the spare capacity Nissan hut if necessary!).
    Then, all contacts are traced and treated/isolated appropriately if necessary.
    Definitely not rocket science.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:42 am | Permalink

      Well if the NHS was run well, had had half decent pandemic planning and about 5 times the number of ventilators like the US then we could get back to work. Had it been very well prepared as Hancock claimed falsely it was.

      Let us hope they get up to this position very soon and we can all get back to work soon. This before they destroy the economy completely.

      To pay off the addition debt the government will have incurred we will need a bonfire or red tape, the cancellation on lunacies like net zero carbon and HS2, easy hire and fire, few payments to the lazy and feckless, a larger more productive private sector and a state sector with about half the number of people in it.

      Freedom and choice in Health Care and Education would be good too. About half the universities need to go (they will be nearly bankrupt anyways without most of the overseas high fee students). Most UK degrees are worth far less than they cost many have no value at all. Even some of the ones in sensible subjects are of very poor quality. The median entry is about three D’s at A level. Surely three Bs or better should be the minimum?

      Let most people learn on the job in practical areas with night school or day release.

      It see we have about 100 times the number of people studying forensic science as we will ever need and about four times as many lawyers as there are jobs in this area. Plus there are far too many jobs in the legal area anyway due to moronic laws, the vague human rights act, over complex tax laws, mad employment laws and hugely excessive litigation. Tackle all this too.

      We need more people doing real and productive jobs and far fewer people getting in their way, taxing and inconveniencing them.

    • Dave Andrews
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:29 am | Permalink

      You go down with the lurgy, but then you’re not quite in isolation, because your food and medicine and other medical needs are attended to by the staff, one of which might also bring you coronavirus, unintentionally.

      • Hope
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:08 am | Permalink

        Better to put quarantine measures in place than not. Same applies to prisons. That is why those original few were taken from ships to Liverpool.

        What the public did not realise that the govt was determined to keep open borders allowing thousands in each week from hotspot countries going straight onto public transport!

        Today Hancock threatening further restrictions and prevent going outside! Why let out thousands of prisoners then?

        Govt still sneaking out bad news under corona virus i.e. mPs numbers tom remain with whopping inflation baring pay rise and a huge advance, Asian grooming gang report to be kept secret after promising no stone unturned and being made public, Abortion laws changed in stark contrast to promising no changes, using Chinese figures when they know they cannot be relied on.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:48 am | Permalink

      The mortality rates are NOTHING like seasonal flu.

      About seven hundred a day are dying, equal to about a quarter of a million a year.

      Your last sentence is exactly what China, S. Korea and others did, what the UK was begged by WHO to do, and what it decided not to do.

      • Ian Wragg
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

        On average1,600 people die each day in the UK being marginally higher in winter.
        According to government statistics 57,000 died Jan last year and 59,000 this Jan
        Hardly earth shattering.
        For this we trash the economy which in the long run will damage the NHS.

        • Original Chris
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

          Nail hit on head, IW.

        • glen cullen
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

          concur with your assessment

  3. Everhopeful
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:02 am | Permalink

    Me and mine are beginning to feel like mugs for obeying the edicts.
    Nobody else is bothering!!
    Even our usual weekend tormentor was there last night emptying his car litter onto the pavement, customised jet engine running thunderously in a very “green” way.
    The initial buzz of police has disappeared.
    Is it all over and we have not been informed?
    (I guess the virus can travel across new-build teeny, tiny gardens?).

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:35 am | Permalink

      Well if you can smell them smoking or vaping it probably can do.

      • steve
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:21 am | Permalink


        Not so.

        All vape vapour wil do is give a rough indication of where someone’s exhalation is. What do you suggest – people should stop breathing ?

        • Lifelogic
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

          I am merely pointing out that transfer from one garden to another is perfectly possible.

          I know a girl who had a severe allergic reaction to a horse that ran past her well over 10 metres away with the wind in her direction.

          • Martin in Cardiff
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

            Yes, science has no conclusive information on how far this virus can be carried as an aerosol and still be dangerous.

            The same is true for the common cold. It might be metres, it might be miles, or even tens of miles.

            The Chinese appeared to assume that it was a lot more than two metres.

          • Edward2
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:59 pm | Permalink

            Oh well listen to the Chinese and believe all they tell you.

        • Stred
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 9:23 am | Permalink

          A moderate wind travels at 10m/second or 20mph. That’s a fifth of a second to travel 2m. Researchers in the US have pointed out that the WHO recommended distance originates from the 1930s and that viruses can travel further.

    • Al
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:59 am | Permalink

      “Me and mine are beginning to feel like mugs for obeying the edicts.”

      It depends where you live. I haven’t seen any police in our area, but I have seen photos of the packed nearby park, watched one of our neighbours have a family gathering of about forty, the steady procession of cars in and out visiting a neighbour who still publicly claims online she hasn’t seen anyone in weeks, and had to abort a trip for a prescription due to a queue that wasn’t social distancing. It is frustrating.

      I ended up walking to the neighbouring borough to get the prescription. They had police out, queues are following tape on the pavements, and people are being sensible. It might be why they have half the coronavirus cases and under a quarter the deaths…

    • Fred H
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:11 am | Permalink

      Ever … report car reg to the Police, Neighbourhood watch, etc

    • Two ongoing
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:15 am | Permalink

      There are far more “essential” car journeys since day two of The Great House Arrest

  4. ColinD.
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:12 am | Permalink

    A target of 100,000 tests a week is too modest. We need to be told when 250,000 a week (or more) can be achieved. I think garden centres should be allowed to open NOW – if supermarkets can police the 2 metre rule, I am sure garden centres can also do it. I also think the government should announce when all people under 40 can go back to work – that age group has only a very small risk of not recovering from the virus. We really need ‘herd immunity’ to be achieved asap.

    • steve
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:17 am | Permalink


      “if supermarkets can police the 2 metre rule”

      ….they have no authority to police anything, same goes for the day-glo vest wearing morons they hire to boss gullible people about.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

        Supermarkets are private property.

        You are subject to an implied contract to accept the terms of entry.

        Their staff can be assigned the rights of the freeholder to require you to conform to the terms or to leave.

        • steve
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:55 pm | Permalink


          And if you don’t accept their terms ? …tough luck, you cannot be forced to accept them, is the point.

    • rose
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:39 am | Permalink

      Yes, we need plants and people may then spend more time in their gardens and less time clogging up the parks.

      • rose
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:15 am | Permalink

        Perhaps you could enlist Mr Zahawi in this cause. The British must spend a huge amount of money on plants at this time of year and it is a home industry we really mustn’t lose.

        • rose
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:21 am | Permalink

          Our object must be to counter the authoritarian left and open little sections of British industry bit by bit. Obviously the cafes in garden centres can stay shut for the time being.

    • Data Please
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:48 am | Permalink

      Like others I’m now questioning the wisdom of PCR (Antigen) testing being undertaken on NHS staff, if that’s the case.

      Can someone please inform me where I’m going wrong with the following:

      If these tests are purely to detect if someone has the virus (they don’t detect AntiBodies).

      I can understand that its being used to confirm if ill patients have got the virus.

      But why are they being used as an ALL-CLEAR mechanism for NHS staff ?

      Yes the NHS person may at the testing point in time, be clear.

      But may become infected afterwards, especially as unsubstantiated reports are saying the results take up to 4 days to return.

      This doesn’t make sense, as otherwise NHS staff will need to be repeatedly tested, with 4 day windows to infect people, which makes the entire exercise a dangerous farce, that consumes the majority of the testing resources whilst preventing population sampling that may assist an intelligent response to the crisis.

      What am I missing ?

    • Dave Andrews
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:27 am | Permalink

      I really don’t like this herd immunity idea. We don’t practice it for say cholera or malaria.
      I don’t want to catch your germs and I dare say you don’t want to catch mine either.
      So let’s tackle this disease with good hygiene and infection control shall we?

  5. Mike Stallard
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:13 am | Permalink

    Immediately after the second world war, I went to Germany with my far sighted Aunt Joy and saw Cologne Cathedral standing black against the rubble while sad groups of ragged DPs (Displaced Persons) looked on.
    It seemed that they would be like that till the end of time to a six year old boy.
    How wrong can you be? This was on the eve of the German Economic Miracle! The German economy burst back in full strength making Germany one of the power houses of the world.

    That is why I look forward to a burst of energy from our newly Brexited country. God Save the Queen!

    • glen cullen
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:48 am | Permalink

      I agree that there is some light however this can only happen after lockdown

      • Original Chris
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:20 pm | Permalink

        and only when we get rid of our globalist leaders, gc, I believe. Unless Boris has a damascene conversion we will not recover as we should.

    • Andy
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:48 am | Permalink

      Germany didn’t burst back by erecting trade barriers with its nearest neighbours. It burst back by doing precisely the opposite.

      We can see precisely the same phenomenon in Croatia. War ravaged just 25 years ago – now a successful developed integrated country. And also in Rwanda which has opened itself up.

      Brexit is precisely the opposite of what you seem to think it is. Very sad.

      • Edward2
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

        But the UK isn’t erecting trade barriers.
        The Government wants free trade with the whole world.
        Ridiculous comment from you Andy.

      • graham1946
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

        Then why are nineteen countries of this wonderful institution taking still money to keep afloat after 16 years with the rest paying.

      • Fred H
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

        Germany burst back by getting on with recovery…..then thought if we join the French we can impose ourselves with rules on the rest of Europe.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

          The UK, along with France and Germany were The Big Three.

          • Fred H
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

            The EEC formed in 1957, the UK joined the EU in 1973. UK was in the big three what? Founding 6 nations carried on without us , nay DENIED us for 16 years….

          • Margaret Howard
            Posted April 6, 2020 at 12:02 am | Permalink

            Fred H

            We were asked to join but turned our noses up and set up EFTA instead. Biggest mistake we ever made – apart from leaving it again.

          • Fred H
            Posted April 6, 2020 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

            MH — back then we could see an economic throttle grip on our neck being proposed, all these years to break free.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:42 am | Permalink

      Germany had British people delivering honest money (Deutschmark) setting us schools and Volkswagen again, Marshall Aid. In addition the Allies have paid the German Defence costs for almost 70 years!
      Brexit will be a wonderful success but not because we are like Germany, but because we are releasing ourselves from the burden of carrying German Europe. Now we need our independence from the Commonwealth and the UN too.

      • Ian Wragg
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

        Well spoken LA. People forget Germany didn’t contribute much to the cold war effort and paid no reparations after ww2. We had to repay the USA until 1965 but Germany had their debts cancelled

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

          Who knows, they might even get back all their gold from the US one day too?

          • Lynn Atkinson
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

            I’m surprised you are in Cardiff and not in the Red Valleys!

        • Margaret Howard
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:49 pm | Permalink

          Ian Wragg

          “Germany … paid no reparations after ww2”

          You really shouldn’t get your history lessons from the likes of the Daily Mail.

        • bill brown
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 12:59 am | Permalink

          Ian Wragg

          No reparatoos after the war but plenty of reparations during the 1969s and 70s t among other Poland, Russia and the former Czekesloavakia

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:50 am | Permalink

      That energy would come from the energetic.

      That is, from the young.

      And they generally want to be part of the European Union.

      • Edward2
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

        Energetic they might be.
        But that doesn’t make them right on the EU.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

          They are not going to use their resources to give you what you want, I can promise you that.

          • Edward2
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:01 pm | Permalink

            I ask for nothing from them.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

        Misdirected energy and action is the biggest cause of self harm there is! Try engaging the brain before exerting energy. You see? That is the sort of advice you can only get from oldies like me and the advice is worth untold millions!

    • BillM
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:59 am | Permalink

      Germany thrived post war because of Ludwig Erhard who from 1947, rejected price controls and dumped tons of Nazi Red Tape then let his Private Sector do their own thing. Germany stopped rationing some 4 years before the UK We were subjected to the debilitating socialist policies of the Attlee Government.
      You would have thought there was a lesson to be learned from the Germans but it was ignored but that has been the MO of too many British Governments since.
      Boris, do a Mrs T (and a Ludwig) and initiate an economic miracle for OUR country.

  6. Cheshire Girl
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:36 am | Permalink

    And, Thank you, Sir John, for all your efforts to try and address the concerns of so many of us.

    As Ive said before, I think the government is doing a very good job in impossible circumstances. There are so many facets they are trying to cover, and in my opinion, they often don’t get the thanks they deserve.

    Now, if only the Media would stop sniping from the sidelines, and a minority of people would stop congregating in the sunshine, we might have a chance of beating this awful thing.

    • steve
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:15 am | Permalink

      Cheshire Girl

      I don’t think Gov’t has done a good job at all.

      They’ve screwed it from the start – should have slammed the borders firmly shut in the first place.

      “There are so many facets they are trying to cover,”

      ……and a lot more they’re trying to cover – up.

  7. Javelin
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:40 am | Permalink

    Is there a register of vunerable people AND is does it include those who are self isolating and what their financial position is?

    Does the health service have this information and will they relax the data protection act to make it available?

    Having a detailed list would help to decide how to relax the restrictions.

    Would it be possible to move, for example a 40 year old out of house where they are isolating with their 70 year old parents.

  8. Everhopeful
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:42 am | Permalink

    Surely to Goodness Parliament needs to be recalled.
    The main disaster facing us are the consequences of trying to place the population under house arrest.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:18 am | Permalink

      Hancock even wants to stop people sitting down (alone) on the grass in a park or at the beach? He is threatening further clampdowns. Perhaps he has never lived in a small flat?

      • Fred H
        Posted April 6, 2020 at 7:32 pm | Permalink

        The Riot Act was for 12 or more, now we are heading for just 1. The person when accosted is likely to use threatening language, thus justifying apprehension. I don’t think even the KGB ever thought it was worth it.

    • glen cullen
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:55 am | Permalink

      The health secretary tell us that there are now thousand of tests every day

      I believe the testing of MPs should be a priority as is their return to HoC

      We are in a state of emergency after all

      • Al
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

        “I believe the testing of MPs should be a priority as is their return to HoC” – glen cullen

        I would prefer priority was given to people who cannot remote work, such as the NHS and postal workers, so we can keep this country moving. Giving Matt Hancock an excuse to go out while imprisioning everyone else for the actions of a few would not be acceptable.

        I cannot think of any other crime where you are allowed to imprison the innocent to punish the guilty.

        • glen cullen
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

          But NHS and postal workers are deemed essential and can continue in work

          All other workers i.e those not deemed essential, must at some stage be allowed to return to work and the priority should be to politicians hopefully via a speedy test

          Agree with your assessment about Matt Hancock

          • Al
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

            “But NHS and postal workers are deemed essential and can continue in work ” -glen cullen

            Which is why it is essential they are tested because those who are positive will spread it as their work brings them into direct contact with other people.

            MPs can work from home, as we keep being assured by all those Zoom meetings the press report on and the online forums like the local councils.

            MPs do not produce funds for the country – they are paid by the taxpayer. If you want the economy to restart, frontline workers and tax generators who cannot work from home should be given priority.

      • Fred H
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

        glen … what Bills are important enough to have 650 travel from all over the country to sit in the small chamber, supported by many H of C workers?
        Thousands of tests needs to be Hundreds of thousands pronto..

        • glen cullen
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

          That’s an easy one
          Repeal –
          The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England)
          Regulations 2020

          Repeal it today, now

          • Fred H
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:08 pm | Permalink

            but thats an Act, isn’t it? I bet you nobody has drafted anything to get it to a new Bill stage?

            Perhaps Sir John would tell me how we can get it repealed?

          • Lynn Atkinson
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

            Get Brexit done – no point keeping on talking for talking’s sake

            Repeal the HS2 fiasco

            Repeal VAT on fuel and the Green levy

            Keep Hauwei out of all the U.K. networks

            Only take half an hour.

    • steve
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:58 am | Permalink


      “The main disaster facing us are the consequences of trying to place the population under house arrest.”

      No, they are the consequences facing this government at the next general election.

    • Caterpillar
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

      And Hancock apparently wants to go further with no exercise allowed – i.e. more imprisoned then prisoners, fewer rights than farm animals, this is what our Govt thinks of us.

      • Mark
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

        The government should be encouraging local councils and others to make it easier to take exercise in pleasant locations like parks while still observing social distancing rules. Some ideas that should be obvious: make one way circuits, so that people do not have to pass each other regularly. Organise separate entrance and exit. Get volunteer marshals to help, reducing the need for policing.

    • Caterpillar
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

      13th April is not an early enough review of the knee jerk lockdown and the dire consequences it has had. I would like to see recall and questioning, but I think all is lost, the Govt has dictatorial powers and is doing exactly what the opposition wants. There seems no (peaceful) route back to freedom even assuming the economy maintains the ability to keep people existing.

  9. Lifelogic
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:51 am | Permalink

    In the Gove (plus experts) questions yesterday we had some rather silly statements. The usual the virus does not discriminate when we know it does (mainly against men, the elderly, some existing conditions and blood group O), One person even said the wanted to get the number of deaths down. It seems rather unlikely they will be able to bring people back to life. The rate of increase should start to fall, but not for about two weeks or so I expect. Rather like past chancellors and PMs claiming they’re were repaying the debt while just increasing it a bit less quickly.

    Gove seemed to be trying to confuse full mechanical ventilators with more simple breathing/oxygen aids so as to confuse the numbers. Doctors on the front line say they do not have sufficient people to operate mechanical ventilators. Why is this we have had two + months to train people up. It cannot be that hard to do.

    So the 13 people at the care home did not get to hospital or to a ventilator it seems. Was this their choice or the NHS’s?

    Why was it that the NHS had only 1/5 of the number the the US and many other countries have? Is it because we have a top down communist health care system and kill most other competition in the sector by being free as the point of rationing and delay?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:44 am | Permalink

      Why are these 13 care home death and (very many other I assume) not included in the death figures?

      • Fred H
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

        ask Mrs Sturgeon about that.

      • Mark
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:17 pm | Permalink

        The figures to watch will be the overall mortality data. We should also compare it against e.g. the 2014/15 winter flu epidemic.

  10. Alan Jutson
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:08 am | Permalink

    Thanks for your efforts JR

    If only the council could find a way of workers keeping their distance, they could fix all the potholes in the roads at busy junctions etc now, to save traffic chaos later when all of the cars are back on the road.
    Would that qualify under essential work ?

    • Data Please
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

      Despite it being an excellent idea.

      I’ve got a horrible feeling that there won’t be any funds to do the repair work, unless Councils are allowed to grossly increase Council Tax to consume our savings, or money from our cars and other possessions sold at knockdown prices to the CarpetBaggers or the money Govt will be borrowing to pay the unemployed to pay their Council Tax, or the Govt cutting out the middle person and allowing Councils to borrow directly from the unending supply of the Bank of Magic Money Tree.

      Thinking it through, there won’t be any traffic to worry about other than the occasional patrol car to check social distancing or question the workers if that Easter Ovoid is an essential purchase for their Child or if they’re in the picture taken by their drone of a sole walker in square miles of open moorland which they’re hunting down as they drive by a nearby house in which someone is being domestically abused if not worse, so that Old Folk like me will have my life extended by a few months or years to enjoy my House Arrest in penury, whilst I die slowly of clogged arteries due to lack of exercise.

      Is John Cleese or any other remaining member of the Monty Python team the secret adviser to this Government or has a Spike Milligan script accidently fallen into the policy folder.

      Hurry back Dominic, Your Country Needs You.

      The above sarcasm is courtesy of my being cooped up indoors while I watch the glorious days outside passing me by that I’ll never get back.

      Trust me, each day is a lifetime once you believe Senior Police Chiefs look young.

    • SM
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:46 pm | Permalink

      FYI, a cousin works for a major road repair contractor, and is regarded as an ‘essential’ worker.

      • Fred H
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

        send him to Wokingham and outlying (what used to be) villages – plenty of work on the roads required here.

  11. formula57
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    I remain astonished by your industry and in admiration of your effectiveness. (What do the other 649 do?)

    Looking ahead, and mindful the Government was slow to act and badly advised on health matters, can we have confidence it will be ready for breakdowns in law and order?

    • steve
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:10 am | Permalink


      Be careful to make the distinction between law & enshrined rights, which take precedence.

    • Al
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:21 pm | Permalink

      “I remain astonished by your industry and in admiration of your effectiveness. (What do the other 649 do?)” – formula57

      Mine was apparently organising a public demonstration according to his last news update. I wonder if anyone has told Matt Hancock…

  12. Lifelogic
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:11 am | Permalink

    Sir Kier Starmer is very tedious indeed, judging by his acceptance speech. A pro EU, left wing, Human Rights lawyer is not really going to go down that well with many Labour voters I suspect. We have far too many such people in the Conservative Party already. Unlike the other candidates for leader or deputy leader (or indeed most other labour MPs) he can, I suppose, speak in full coherent sentences (all though they are usually wrong headed ones).

    But Starmer policies of big government, more lawyers, more human “rights” laws, climate alarmism and expensive energy, more employment “protections” and red tape, more EU, less democracy and open door immigration are unlikely to be voted in than goodness. They are the last think the UK needs.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:27 am | Permalink

      In the Sunday times today Starmer says he says “that means building vaccination centres in town and cities across the country”. Clearly he is totally deluded a vaccination can be given by almost anyone with 5 minutes training who has the vaccine and a syringe, it can be done almost anywhere at all. We do not need buildings we need the vaccine you dope.

      The reason we are in this mess is that the NHS is appallingly run and structured and the pandemic planning was appalling. Not because the NHS is under funded it was just incompetently run. We need freedom and choice in healthcare not a dire, appallingly structured, dire, state monopoly.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

      Needless to say Osborne likes Starmer. They are both pro EU, tax borrow and piss down the drain, climate alarmists, big government and red tape pushing socialists.

      Osborne at least has not been a human right lawyer I suppose – otherwise they are just as bad as each other.

      • Stred
        Posted April 6, 2020 at 9:40 am | Permalink

        They both need vaccinating against stupidity.

  13. Ian Wragg
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:22 am | Permalink

    And 53 crossed the channel yesterday. No action by the government.

    • Fred H
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:18 am | Permalink

      assisted by a easterly wind?

    • bigneil(newercomp)
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:33 am | Permalink

      No action by the govt? I disagree Ian. While WE, English born and bred taxpayers, are threatened with arrest, court, fines, jail and a criminal record – those 53 were ferried here at our expense, met with numerous NHS ambulances – our expense again, and numerous Police. Those Police could have been doing something useful, like demanding an explanation from decent people for driving to the shop. The 53 will be mainly, if not all, young males, with a family of 10+ each, waiting back home for the telephone call to “Come on over”. Our govt has priorities that clearly favour foreign illegals. Were they all more than 2 metres apart in their boats? NO – but no problem for them. They’ll already be housed by now.

      We continually get the message “Stay at home” rammed at us – why hasn’t our govt said the same to those 53 and the rest at Calais? Open doors for them. I can hear them laughing all the way up here.

    • Andy
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:44 am | Permalink

      They were detained by the Border Force and are being dealt with by immigration officers. That sounds like action to me. What ‘action’ do you want? Their boat sunk and for them to drown?

      • Sea Warrior
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

        No. Kept in custody and then sent back to from whence they came. I don’t mean to the French coast; I mean back to their own countries. Any given refugee status should get an NI number and NOTHING else from the state – ever! And then the flood will stop.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

          They often will not say from where they have originally come.

          They don’t want benefits. They want cash-in-hand work here among their co-ethnic and co-cultural fellows, who may not exist in France, and where ID cards and close regulation of the cash economy are in place.

          If they do get in, then they don’t report to the nearest police station, do they?

          • Edward2
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

            That’s just an excuse.
            Your post reveals you believe they don’t want to pay tax and become a part of society.
            Which is illegal.
            You usually complain about people who avoid paying their “fair share”
            But now you think it’s just fine.
            Strange logic.

          • Fred H
            Posted April 6, 2020 at 7:25 pm | Permalink

            Martin – -nearest police station? Several in the Wokingham/Bracknell area got closed – centralised just along from the over-developed flood plain. Maybe you still need cop-shops in Cardiff, if memory serves me correctly you certainly do, but here in law-abiding Berkshire it seems crime can be ignored.

        • glen cullen
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:05 pm | Permalink


      • Fred H
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

        it might be easier for the French to prevent them going between 1 and say 5 miles from their coast, than as often happened – they drown due to rough sea, engine fault or set course information.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

        Boats turned around at the mid point ie our border and good wishes for their return journey, and a message to other boat owners …

        • glen cullen
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

          and you only have to turn back one boat the others will get the message

    • glen cullen
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:04 am | Permalink

      ”The first duty of the government is to keep citizens safe and the country secure” (source – Home Office website)

      Looks like the government has failed in its first duty

    • Where ARE you?
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:32 am | Permalink

      The government, many of them I guess are on some islands, Shetlands (?) isolating themselves and issuing orders for us to stay where we are. They’ll be back and in spitting distance

    • steve
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:56 am | Permalink

      Ian Wragg

      “And 53 crossed the channel yesterday. No action by the government.”

      I’m surprised you got that one through moderation. If I’d have criticised gov’t my invited comments would just sit there awaiting moderation.

    • Lester Beedell
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

      Ian Wragg the only action taken is to give them a lift and ensure that their Human Rights are “respected” how about our Human Rights, I thought that was one of the reasons why we Voted Leave in the 2016 referendum but it doesn’t seem to have made any difference, that’s the reason for the NHS creaking under the load, it needs total reform, pen pushers receiving stupendous amounts of money, I received 2 letters from the RUH in Bath from the same department in separate envelopes, each with an extra sheet of A4 with my address on, multiply that by the number of letters sent out 😳 during the last election people were suggesting that the Americans were going to buy the NHS, I wouldn’t think for a moment that they’d be interested in a broken business, perhaps the service would improve if they had bought it, I’m not criticising the staff for a second, my daughter is a mental health nurse and she’s working from

      • Stred
        Posted April 6, 2020 at 9:48 am | Permalink

        I’m still getting regular letters from the preventive health department, probably a PHE directive, telling a French lady, who was a very fit looking young French lady in 1993 when she was a tenant in my present home. She has been in France since then.

  14. Mary M.
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    Dear Sir John,
    Are you able to reassure us that every single person returning to our country via our airports is being adequately tested on arrival here? UK citizens need to know that answering the huge ‘ask’ made by the Government will not be vain. Thank you.
    In an article in the Telegraph dated 4th April 2020, Dominic Raab refers to over 200,000 stranded British citizens being returned home by commercial and charter flights. I scoured this article for reassurance, but to no avail.

    • Hope
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:55 am | Permalink

      They are getting tested unlike the thousands coming in via airports!it is not and has not. It is in vain. It is a fact that other countries had border controls and others tested like Sout Korea. The UK, because of PHE, allowed open borders without quarantine or checks from hotspot countries while telling the public it will do whatever it takes! The sheer dishonesty of this Govt is beyond any reasonable persons civic duty to help it.

    Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:37 am | Permalink

    The wartime analogies are deliberately and cynically political in nature. I find that unnerving.

    I have watched politics from afar for decades and the deliberate, glacial move towards State authoritarianism has been taking place and indeed has accelerated in the last 15 years or so

    The modern political mindset is one of imposition, hate, concealment and contempt for individualism, individual freedom and freedom of expression.

    The State is on the verge of becoming all-invasive and all-consuming and that spells disaster for freedom loving peoples.

    This event is being used, abused and manipulated by every State vested interest to expand their budgets, embed their budgets and expand their influence

  16. agricola
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:39 am | Permalink

    Many thanks for all your efforts to get government to respond to need as you see it. The effect will go way beyond Wokingham if your advice is acted upon.

    No doubt we all want to get back to normal as soon as possible, but recall the effect that WW1 and WW2 had on society at their ends. Be open minded about the affect on society in the aftermath of Covid 19.

    Be aware that the UK’s path back to normality is to a large extent dependant upon the rate of progress of the same process in all those countries we trade with. Without getting too parochial this might make us think about being a bit more self sufficient. Thanks again for your efforts.

    • glen cullen
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:12 am | Permalink

      No…the path back to normality is the measure of the unemployment rate at the end of April…..and the measure of SMEs and Self-Employed going bust this week

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:32 pm | Permalink


        • glen cullen
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

          Brace brace brace!!!

  17. James Bertram
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    Sir John, I hope one of the first things you will reinstate is the re-opening of churches, and cemeteries.
    They are places for quiet reflection and solace, particularly for the bereaved, those with deep troubles, and people who want to be alone in their thoughts. Ditto, solitary walking in the countryside. ‘Social distancing’ naturally occurs in such circumstances, and the closure of these places by control freaks is not just stupid, it is a deliberately cruel act that should never have been tolerated.

    • BOF
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:47 am | Permalink

      Authorities love exercising the additional powers they now have.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:06 am | Permalink

      Perhaps we should evict all the millions of protected bats from churches first. Lest they catch and incubate the virus?

      • glen cullen
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

        Don’t mention the bats in the belfry you’ll get green lobby going again

    • Jiminyjim
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:06 am | Permalink

      Totally agree.

    • Sea Warrior
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

      I disagree about church re-openings. Perhaps the BBC could televise services from Canterbury cathedral.

  18. BCL
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:55 am | Permalink

    Two things.

    I live on the south coast and take my exercise by walking along the beach. In my experience everyone is abiding by the distancing guidelines. That’s purely anecdotal, of course, but I state it for what it’s worth.

    Secondly, if you hear anyone from the Doctors’ Association interviewed, bear in mind that they are a new, militant and left wing group. In my view they are very biased and I doubt you’ll hear anything but criticism of the government from them. Take what they say with a pinch of salt.

    • John E
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:05 am | Permalink

      When I see photos of police officers walking up to people who are sitting on the beach or on a park bench alone with no one anywhere near them I wonder what on Earth they think they are achieving.
      That police officer is probably their greatest risk of exposure to the virus.

      • glen cullen
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

        The police aren’t even following the rules and restrictions, they the police don’t understand the law they are trying to enforce …quite pathetic

        You may under the rules complete a period of daily exercise, it doesn’t describe the type of exercise nor its warm up nor its warm down nor its mid exercise rest point….the police have no excuse to stop you or demand you go home during your daily exercise period

    • glen cullen
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:14 am | Permalink

      I only want to hear from an NHS spokesperson …not a doctor or nurse but the offical spokesperson

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:02 pm | Permalink


        That would be a political appointment.

        • Edward2
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

          That’s not right.
          A spokesperson for the NHS would be someone employed by the NHS.
          They would have applied originally for job in the administration or management of the NHS.
          Then they would be asked to be a spokesperson.
          It us not a political appointment at all.

        • glen cullen
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:24 pm | Permalink

          No ….that would be an NHS appointment

  19. BJC
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:02 am | Permalink

    I have been struck by the Conservatives’ ability to adapt to circumstances, albeit, more by accident than design with their enforced lurch to the left. Meanwhile, Labour’s message is still about treating people as if they’re victims of circumstances. A subtle, but important distinction. We aren’t victims and most have adapted their behaviour, because they can see that this painful interlude is the only way to help bring the virus under control until a vaccine is available. Life is slower and people truly want to spread kindness, not the virus, so our contribution should be praised, especially once we start to see results from our “sacrifices”, because that will only be the beginning of the end of this pandemic.

    With regards to the economy, I know government always likes to think big, but I propose that the first return to a form of “business as usual” should be the more mundane, specifically hairdressing (with precautionary measures). I know it’s a little left-field, but we need to keep our spirits up and feel good about ourselves, we all (most!) need our hair cut, so the green shoots of a return to normality would reach across all levels of society. On a practical level, despite working in close proximity to their clients, hairdressers do, of course, spend their days looking at their backs and with their hands in water!

  20. Annette Bates
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:11 am | Permalink

    A couple of small points, Sir John, which may also be the case for some of your constituents.

    Not ‘all’ vulnerable people have been ‘notified’ by RNHS. In a couple of phone conversations, a couple of RNHS have mentioned ‘Of course, he’s received the letter hasn’t he?’ to which the answer is ‘No’. As with most box-ticking bureaucracies, when more than one area is involved I suspect that each has expected/assumed another to action it so nothing actually happens. It’s how people fall down the cracks. As any sensible person would as with any other bug, I’ve taken sensible precautions which will continue.

    The second is related to the overly zealous lockdown & the resulting impact on the vulnerable. The dangerous notion that many (that I’ve spoken to who believe the media hysteria) seem to think that once lockdown finishes, the virus will be no more, means that many who subsequently catch the virus will inevitably come into contact with the elderly & vulnerable. All it seems to have done is shift the timeframe, whilst wrecking the economy as an aside. The incarceration of the vulnerable will inevitably have to be extended as those released from lockdown will not yet be immune so the risk will remain.

    The ‘cure’ appears worse than the disease & leads many to question whether another agenda is in play. Has the breakout been deliberately delayed for maximum pressure to extend our colonisation by the EU? We can already see the ‘transition’, not really leaving, arrangements being ‘normalised’.

    Will Ferguson’s repeated failures on calamitous forecasting be investigated? Was his work corroborated? It’s interesting to note that his work at IC is partially funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Will the MSM be held to account for driving hysteria & a different agenda? It does the Govt no favours that we see them being bullied into particular actions. Strong Government? Pah! It gives no confidence that they will stand up for our country against the EU.

  21. Nig l
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:11 am | Permalink

    You sound surprised the government schemes have masses of small print and will be slow to roll out. As ever the BS outweighs the actualitee. How long have you been involved with politics? When will risk averse inward looking Civil Servants road test the practicalities before rolling these initiatives out?

    You need to add a PS. And I apologise on behalf of my government for doing nothing about the bureaucratic incompetence of the NHS over umpteen years resulting in you suffering more than you should have.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:46 am | Permalink

      It’s HM’s government not Sir John’s. Why don’t you ask her to apologise?

  22. Dave Andrews
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:18 am | Permalink

    We hear recently that of the 700 deaths in the UK in one day, all but 40 had underlying health conditions. Which begs the question – why are so many vulnerable people being exposed to the virus?
    Now I understand. These are people who have had to be admitted into hospital for reasons other than coronavirus, and then acquired the disease as a hospital infection.
    I agree with the aim of reducing the infection rate, and the curfew will help, but we won’t see improvement until the hospital risk is removed. This is an example of the herd immunity concept mentioned a little while ago, only it’s not being applied to the general population, just those in the health services. Once they have had the disease and are immune, they will cease to pass it on (via inadequate infection control and PPE) to the patients. The health care workers are the sacrificial lambs.
    The coronavirus death statistics will then reduce, as people die only of the conditions they went into hospital for.

    • Fred H
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:20 am | Permalink

      admitted from homes, care homes, other recovery wards.

    • Caterpillar
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:43 am | Permalink

      Dave Andrews,

      You might be right, but are you just assuming or has there actually been an announcement of widespread nosocomial infection? Are hospitals not separating CV patients and their carers from the rest? As you indicate one doesn’t want to put the most vulnerable next to a source of infection but I cannot believe hospitals are not making this separation.

      As you also indicate, we have been told about large number of deaths with underlying health conditions. Have you seen an updated clear breakdown/summary/analysis of these published anywhere, I feel like we are in the dark without seeing this? [I’d also like to know whether full blood counts are being done on hospitalised patients so that any cross sectional or longitudinal patterns in the leukocytes are picked up. I know this is the medical experts’ job, but since we are repeatedly told we are all in this, I would like much more (anonymised) data transparency]. It is difficult to judge fairly without sufficient data.

    • zorro
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:51 am | Permalink

      Exactly what I have been speaking about from looking at the Worldometer figures. Do you remember MRSA?


  23. Polly
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    Surely the deliberate denial of Hydroxychloroquine in the UK is a denial of the obligation of doctors to do their best for the sick and dying ?

    From ”The Sunday Telegraph”…..

    ”SIR – The chief medical officer, Professor Chris Whitty, has banned doctors from treating Covid-19 with anything other than paracetamol and, in severe cases, oxygen.

    Colleagues have rightly condemned this response, which ignores the experience of doctors overseas. Professor Whitty’s position is that British doctors may not use therapies that have not undergone double blind controlled trials here. This could condemn many thousands to avoidable death through a failure to recognise that different rules should apply when patients are dying at such a rate.

    The drug, hydroxychloroquine, is well-known, with a well-understood side-effect profile. It is safe. It also has a recognised mode of action in preventing replication of the virus. Comparison of the death rates in South Korea and Italy strongly suggests that it works to dramatically reduce the death rate. Evidence from India is similarly encouraging.

    What sort of society do we live in when professors of rheumatology and consultants in respiratory medicine can only object anonymously? It is distressing that colleagues are too scared for their professional positions that they cannot advocate for their patients. Right or wrong, we have a duty to profess that which we believe to be true. To do otherwise brings into question our role in society. Are we doctors or are we civil servants?

    Dr Steven R Hopkins

    Scunthorpe, Lincolnshire”


  24. Javelin
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:23 am | Permalink

    Questions for a Public Enquiry regarding Public Health England (PHE) about pandemic planning and stockpiling.

    I also think there needs to be a second public enquiry about PHE response to the pandemic. But this first Public Enquiry could kick off right away.

    Here are my initial questions.

    – What pandemic models were considered by PHE and were those models realistic and broad enough in scope to cover possible pandemics?

    – To what level of detail did the pandemic models define what was required to cope with a pandemic?

    – To what extent was an audit made of the NHS current levels of competence based on resources required to cope with a pandemic.

    – What gap analysis if any was done between the different pandemic requirements and the NHS competence?

    – To what extent if any did the gap analysis between requirements and competence of the NHS define stock piling and just-in-time (JIT) procurement requirements ?

    – Did PHE ever publish the list of stockpiles required for a pandemic and to what extent were those stockpiles delivered and managed?

    – Had the JIT procurement been documented, sourced and were agreements in place to ensure delivery in a reliable and timely manner.

    – Was the legal status of pandemic planning and what processes were in place to ensure planning and implementation of stockpiling and JIT procurement happened?

    – What was the initial requirement of the covid pandemic and what if any stockpiling, JIT procurement and process shortfalls occurred as a result of the covid pandemic.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:44 pm | Permalink

      We will never see these, not any similar “plans” made for terrorist, nuclear or other existential threats, under the cloak of national security. Worrying, isn’t it?

  25. Sakara Gold
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    Good morning. Thank you for an excellent post, this is what the nation needs from all of it’s MP’s.

    I hope that similar resources have been provided to the Falkland Islands, where Sky News is reporting that British forces have infected the inhabitants with the Chinese plague virus – apparently because there are insufficient test kits to test people leaving RAF Brize Norton to fly down there. This is shamefull incompetence by the MoD, I cannot imagine how the chain of command allowed something so easily prevented to occur. Possibly some civil servant enamoured of the now widely derided herd immunity stategy felt it was unnecessary.

    There is currently an ongoing war of words between the Chinese communist regime and the US over where the virus originated, allegations are flying back and forth as the Chinese attempt to control the narrative. The Washington Post has published evidence that the virus originated in the Wuhan Institute of Virology, coincedentally located a couple of miles from the wildlife market linked to the first outbreak – where “research” was being undertaken on SARS, MERS and bat coronaviruses. The Chinese allege the US team at the World Military Games held in Hubei province in October 2019 brought the virus into China.

    Whoever is right, the Chinese plague virus has managed to take out an entire US Carrier Group led by USS Theodore Roosevelt (a Nimitz-class nuclear powered aircraft carrier) in the Pacific without firing a shot – the ship’s captain has been relieved of command after requesting assistance with a letter to the US Navy command that was leaked. The ship has now been quarantined in Guam.

    Could this be a devilishly cunning Chinese equivalent of Pearl Harbour? We must wait and see. The MoD should take immediate action to test, identify, isolate and trace contacts of British service people who have the virus – the government must have the option of using the Armed Forces should it be necessary for what ever reason and to do that the chain of transmission must be broken.

  26. Stred
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    Is there any part of the government devoted to getting business back to work or saving stocks of goods which are bought and rotting or con not be sold? It doesn’t seem like it. We appear to be governed by the stste medical bureaucracy and the police for the foreseeable future.

      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:07 am | Permalink

      ‘governed by the stste medical bureaucracy and the police for the foreseeable future.’

      Absolutely correct. Johnson’s refusal to take control by handing over responsibility to the organisation that should not be criticised is worrying

      NHS mandarins and the Police are unelected vested interests. They should be brought under control of the government

  27. Data Please
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    Apologies, my previous comment was mangled by my attempt to place a link into, please remove that comment if possible. It should be as follows:

    As ever Sir John you’re a role model for how all our MP’s should function, your constituents are lucky.

    However, in my opinion this spineless Govt has surrended to Public Bodies and Quangos determined to maintain their Marxist emulating, centralised, ever increasing death grip round our throats whilst they oversee the crushing of this society into the Dark Ages.

    If I remember correctly, despite our Rose Tinted, All In It Together view of WWII, this type of behaviour by the Bureaucrats, to an existential crisis, was quickly sidelined,
    and replaced by Entrepreneurs and Industrialists who had the vision and expertise to rapidly ramp up procurement, logistics and production to increase the response to the threat.

    Despite severe Wartime shortages.

    Control was placed into the hands of people who weren’t obsessed with the number of Loo Rolls in the toilets before converting a factory to produce essential supplies.

    This weak Govt apparently is unwilling or incapable of doing similar.

    Boris wants to be viewed as the 21st Century Churchill. He will rapidly realise we demand action, not delusion.

    This crisis is a Marxist Dream.

    An existentialist threat, that can be exploited to crush an initially unquestioning and willing society into destitution to facilitate control by a Despotic regime.

    As I contemplate watching my savings, pension and house flushed down the toilet (earned via a lifetime of effort and sacrifice) I’m looking forward to the Brave New World where Govt will control my thinking,
    tell me where and how to live, where and how I can travel (if allowed) and where I will work.

    Also we’re expected to not question the morality, self interest and motives for this catastrophic strategy forced upon us by our leadership, without our explicit approval, despite accusations of profiteering such as this regarding Jacob Rees-Mogg:

    In my opinion, this Govt is aiding and abetting, if not actioning, Marxist Centralised Control whilst keeping the Industrial Capacity and Entrepreneurship of the Private Sector at bay until its crushed the life out of it along with at least those employed by the Private Sector and Self-Employed.

    I think, “Lions led by Sheep” is how this episode will be remembered if its not written out of history.

    I suspect that Sheep will be replaced by more derogatory terms if future evidence of self interest is exposed regarding the actions of this leadership.

    If profiteering is now being advised to the Wealthy Elite, to take advantage of the destruction of our pension funds, the stock markets need to be halted until this crisis is over.

    Otherwise, in my opinion, this crisis is being exploited to simply transfer our pension funds and capital wealth (eg houses) into the pockets of the Elite.

  28. Lifelogic
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:43 am | Permalink

    Matt Hancock (PPE) just now on Marr:- “The more people obey the rules and stay at home we will get through it faster”. He clearly does not understand his own policy! The policy is to spread the load on the NHS to save lives, by not overloading it. But doing this will make the process longer and not faster.

    We will get through it more slowly due to the policy not more quickly mate.

      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:39 am | Permalink

      Why is he wearing an infantile NHS badge in a twee rainbow design? He wasn’t wearing it while he was on Sky.

      Is the BBC and the NHS working together to protect and promote themselves?

      My prediction. No reform of the BBC. No reform of the NHS. Business as usual. Massive funding increases. All is well in the public sector as the Tories desperately portray themselves as the new party of dependent Socialism

      Waste ever more taxpayers cash to silence the unionised, politically powerful public sector vested interest to protect the Tory party from overt criticism.

      Maintain your critical faculties and treat all political output with total contempt

      • graham1946
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

        The NHS was totally reformed in 2012 with disastrous results. Want the same lot to have another go?
        The NHS and Education should be taken away from politicians altogether who experiment with them for their ideological crackpot
        ideas (both left and right), and to try to make a name for themselves.
        Meanwhile they depart the mess they create and patients and students and taxpayers suffer the consequences. 3 billion the last fiasco cost, never worked, never will but the government show no signs of making improvements and instead promote a professional politician who never ran anything in his life to run it, as it is without any ideas. And no, I do not mean by forming quangos or jobs for the boys. We need a proper discussion and a look around the world to see what is best.

      • Fred H
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

        BBC probably insisted he put it on.

    • BOF
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:55 am | Permalink

      Yes, policy seems to be, drag out the agony, and drive us all mad in the process.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:04 am | Permalink

      Sunbathing is against the rules he says – why on earth should it be if at a distance or just with family?

      • zorro
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

        He’s enjoying putting in the rules for his little police state. Please make sure you follow them to the letter or he will lock you up forever.


        • glen cullen
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

          Under the 1949 Geneva Conventions Article 33: Additional Protocol II of 1977 explicitly forbids collective punishment

          • Zorro
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

            Indeed, let him try it!


    • jerry
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:44 am | Permalink

      @LL; The usual double-talk from useless politicos and their chosen “experts” (Starmer was no better), so it’s OK to be in near social view/contact if your boss tells you to carry on working doing non essential work but it is wrong to be sat in a park or on a beach whilst practising far greater social distancing. Now we are told that the govt might ban ‘out of the home’ exercise, how is that going work, will walking to the shops for necessary food also be banned?…

      Very easy for us who live in nice homes with private gardens to forget that many live in shoe boxes and/or have little natural light at the best of times.

      Yes we mere plebs need to use more common sense but so do the politicos & officials, even more so when they break their own rules/laws by appearing face-to-face & side-by-side in TV studio interviews & Downing Street press briefings (that have become largely political) – NOT NECESSARY Mr Hancock & Mr Starmer et al, just as having a BBQ in a park is not necessary!

      • Data Please
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:18 pm | Permalink

        How then would I walk my Dog or am I expected to turn my flat into a Dog Poo and Piss Health Hazard so killing all in the block via a Cholera and Typhoid epidemic to Save Lives and the NHS !!!

        The more I watch this rabid descent into Totalitarianism, that is busting basic Hygiene & Public Health requirements the more I doubt anyone driving this lunacy has had any more Medical Training than watching the opening credits of Carry on Matron.

        Has anyone in the Cabinet ever socialised with anyone that doesn’t have a Country Estate ?

        They wouldn’t recognise a block of flats even if the Chauffer drove the Bentley into one.

        Forget Coronavirus this Govt has been infected by the stark raving bonkers virus.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:56 am | Permalink

      Well, if the UK moves, as it should, to mass testing, tracing, and isolation, then the fewer infections there are the less time that will take.

      So I’ll cut him some slack on this particular point. However, that is conditional on the Government doing the foregoing, which remains very unclear.

      If they do not, then their policy remains simply a cull, but more spread out.

      • Edward2
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:24 pm | Permalink

        I could test you today and find you are negative.
        So then you are suddenly confident go out tomorrow and maybe the next day you get infected.
        Which means you might not show symptoms fir another two weeks.

        Some tests are bad quality and give false negatives and false positives.
        Then it can take weeks to develop the markers in your blood that tells you if you gave had the infection and recovered.

        Your keenness for testing has some snags.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:02 pm | Permalink

          Seems to have worked in S. Korea, in Singapore, etc.

          Clearly they must have factored in the imperfections of the tests to their strategies.

          Your flimsiest of excuses for the Government’s unforgivable inaction are blown away, like feathers in the wind, at the first waft.

          Reply You are trying to overwhelm this site with far too many posts. I will now be deleting more of them without reading them

          • Edward2
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

            That’s you told.

          • Fred H
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

            Singapore now having its highest daily cases – – where do you get your nonsense from – make it up as you go along?

          • Mark
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:37 pm | Permalink

            Korea has done 8,996 tests per million population, Singapore has done 6,666. Italy has done 11,436. Testing has not stopped Italy from having some of the highest death rates. Testing is not the key. It is effective quarantine for anyone in contact with a case.

        • bill brown
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 12:55 am | Permalink

          Yes ,but the fact is the government were caught gain with being badly prepared to have enough teste quits available, just like the US

          • Edward2
            Posted April 6, 2020 at 6:07 am | Permalink

            So tell us bill what the next epidemic will be and when it will happen so we can get the many millions of test kits ready.

    • zorro
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:50 am | Permalink

      He is very unconvincing in most matters, although he clearly enjoys his little police state threatening a total lockdown if people go out and enjoy the sun too much even though they are clearly separate with Keir Starmer eagerly supporting that option. If they dare to go down that route to allegedly ‘save lives’ without quoting or pointing to any evidence to substantiate that claim, they will face massive adverse action.

      It is all very well for Keir Starmer and his ilk to preach to everyone from the comfort of their large London residences with gardens, when others may live in high rise one-bed flats or cramped conditions. I might respect him if he put himself in their position while lecturing others but I don’t think that he’ll trouble me on that score….


      • Ginty
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

        With no thought to the dreadfully wet winter we’ve all been through and how much energy and frustration is pent up.

        There aren’t enough troops. There aren’t enough police.

        This can’t be enforced.

      • zorro
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

        Oh bless… It seems like the Scottish CMO is a complete and utter hypocrite who is prepared to spout out draconian guidance for us all to follow on pain of fines whilst on multiple occasions studiously ignoring the same said advice. I wonder if she thought that there would be no investigative journalists around to pick up on her hypocrisy as everybody was shut in their house and could only meet one other person.

        This is the VIRUS that we must defeat – priggish hypocritical freedom deniers – it’s only for the little people.

        So whilst this apparatchik was spouting her advice she was going along to her dacha at the weekends to do what she had forbidden to others – now what society does that remind you of??


      • Data Please
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

        Either the 2m separation guideline is correct or they need to start telling us what distance is appropriate.

        Once again they’re issuing mixed signals.

        We can either go out whilst obeying guidelines for health promoting activities or we can’t.

        Don’t say we can and then lamblast us for being idiots when we do.

        They’re going to end up with the population going down with Vitamin D deficiency or the likes of scurvy if they carry on at this rate.

        Never mind the serious health issues as a result of a long term stressed, opressed, demoralised sedentary lifestyles accompanied by overindulgence of food, cigarettes, alcohol and probably other substances and activities.

        Thats before you add on the worry and anxiety of becoming unemployed, losing your savings, pension and home amongst others.

        Will future studies show that these blind measures killed or created more long term chronic ailments in the population than the numbers they were trying to save ?

        Will it show that they simply moved the casualty demographics from one section of society into another ?

        This ever increasing tightening of Draconian measures, that not only contradict themselves but appear to overlook the human need to undertake activities within guidelines that lift the spirit, maintain morale and promote long term health, look increasingly driven by Marxist Dogma rather than Medical Advice.

        Or is it simply that those with the ability to walk or excercise in a garden or around a Country Estate are forgetting the huge numbers that live in flats or bedsits typically in overcrowded city centres.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

        Sunlight strengthens the immune system. To save lives it must be mandatory for all people in lockdown to go outside for 30 minutes and sit in the sun! Perhaps Mr Hancock doesn’t care about saving lives … ?

        We need to learn how to dish up their own recipes to them but on our skewer.

    • Data Please
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

      I fear the Govt is giving the impression that this blind lockdown strategy will kill the virus and what they mean by it being faster is because they killed it before it passed through the herd.

      Is that really the strategy, do they really think that similar Worldwide lockdown will eradicate this virus or is it Ministers not understanding the strategy they’re being advised to follow.

      I think they need to be very clear what they think this strategy is going to achieve rather than excessively repeating mantra about saving the NHS, which is beginning to sound more political than advisory.

      “Look see, we Tories don’t want to kill the NHS, just the Economy.”

    • margaret
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

      This is assuming that you know the likely behaviour of the virus ( which you don’t).It is a loose assumption as for all you know with a lack of hosts the virus may fade away quickly or then again as the sunlight is more frequent and temperatures rise the virus may die in these conditions. I don’t know either.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

        None of the other Covid viruses did any of the things you propose. We live with them and in general are immune to them.

        • margaret
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 9:48 am | Permalink

          Which is why this one is different and we are concerned We treat every event as individual . We cannot say because one thing another may be . A media GP expresses the fact that sunlight and heat sometimes eradicates and otherwise suppresses. test have been done apparently which results in C-19 dying at 27 degrees F.
          There is nothing worse than supposition when so many lives are at stake. I am sure the relatives of those who died and Boris this am are not happy living with Covid 19 .which we are all satisfied is unique.

          • margaret
            Posted April 6, 2020 at 11:17 am | Permalink

            of course that should be Centigrade.

  29. Neil P
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:04 am | Permalink

    Can we learn from Taiwan’s response to covid 19?

    They seem to have nailed this – try googling for “taiwan covid 19 response”.

    They seem to have been well prepared and decisive, and read between the lines from what information came out of China.

    The biggest problem with our response is that we might get away with it once in a generation, but we cannot do it again any time soon or we’ll all be back to the stone age due to poverty as everyone will be unemployed and everything will have gone bust.

    Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:05 am | Permalink

    Government of national unity = Stop Brexit at all costs event to the point of exploiting the deaths of CV-19 patients

  31. Alison
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:10 am | Permalink

    Thank you so much.
    Please, please do continue to press the government for improvements to the schemes to support SMEs and the self-employed. As sooon as possible. As you are doing. It is critical for our country, even more so in this transition year.
    Aside from the desperate worry and misery that workers and owners must be suffering, they will be feeling extreme bitterness to a Treasury which seems to be splashing cash .. just not to them.
    I do worry that structurally our economy may be more exposed to such a shut-down than others, with I suspect a higher proportion of businesses which rely on a population with plenty of disposable income.

  32. Sharon Jagger
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:10 am | Permalink

    If it’s true that Recovery teams for ending the lockdown are not due to commence until JULY(!), then I fear it will be too late to recover the economy.

    SME’s would struggle to last till June for their financial help never mind not returning to work until…??

    My brother-in-law has a landscaping business, just him and two other workers, and he says if he could purchase supplies, he could continue working now, but can’t. And he says he won’t last till June with no income.

    I’m going to be rude and ask, what idiot dreamt up July, and knowing how slowly Civil Servants work, heavens knows when return to work will actually happen.

    I’m with Rishi Sunak on this one.

    Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    Hancock’s wearing a rainbow embossed ‘NHS’ badge being interviewed on the BBC but when he’s interviewed by Sky he’s not wearing it

    This virtue signalling nonsense is beyond and beneath contempt

    What has happened to the Tory party?

    The NHS now has the Tory party by the cojones and they’ll squeeze them for every single penny

    The Tories have sold their soul to socialism and that’s appalling

  34. RichardP
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    As the Johnson Regime has effectively abolished Easter, Parliament should be recalled from recess immediately to hold Ministers to account for the collapse of the economy and consequent destruction of the NHS.

  35. Everhopeful
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    Apparently the govt has requisitioned ( privatised) shopping delivery slots for those in the “Shield” group.
    The supermarkets ( unable to cope..not enough slots or drivers or probably food) are now encouraging people ( who are not deemed “Shield” but may have relied on deliveries for years) to go out to their supermarkets!! (They have virus-crunching sheeple chevrons ).
    And as a nice little extra..the UN has announced that there will probably be a food shortage!

    • Ginty
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

      Indeed this is what worries me most. The coming food shortage.

      One prays that someone is tasked to deal with stockpiling and rationing systems we’ll need but I have little hope of this happening because this is already turning out to be the most incompetent government and the worst Prime Minister in HISTORY.

      A total and abject failure to assess one risk against another and make the obvious HARD decision that needed to be made.

      They have destroyed our country.

  36. glen cullen
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:35 am | Permalink

    Recovered cases remain at 135 but
    Serious/critical increase overnight from 163 to 1,559
    Now that’s a huge jump overnight, are any of these figures to be believed ?

    It also suggests that if you’re diagnosed as serious/critical you’re probably in hospital and if you’re diagnosed as mild you’re probably at home

    Therefore we have on average one (1) patient per one UK hospital

  37. Lifelogic
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    Public exercise could be banned threatens Hancock – what are they going to do – instruct the police to Taser or shoot people for sitting alone (or with their families) on the grass or the beach – doing no harm at all?

    There is only one police officer for every 650 people – and many of these are doubtless off sick, “working” from home or self isolating!

    Get the police to help making and delivering ventilators, PPE and the likes and get people back to work as soon as the NHS can get its act together. .

    • lifelogic
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:08 am | Permalink

      Threatening the public is not a good strategy Mr Hancock it will not work – it will backfire.

      • John E
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

        Yes indeed. The daily exercise is the only thing keeping some of us sane.
        On my daily walks in my corner of the Wokingham constituency I have seen no issues whatsoever – people are being very respectful and considerate in keeping their distance from one another.
        As I said above my biggest risk would be a police officer coming up to talk to me.
        Hancock should stop digging this hole any deeper and get back to his job. We need tests, not officious oppression.

        • Original Chris
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

          Absolutely, JE.

    • glen cullen
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

      Under the 1949 Geneva Conventions Article 33: Additional Protocol II of 1977 explicitly forbids collective punishment

    • Original Chris
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

      The police always seem to go for low hanging fruit. Ticks a box.

      They have completely lost sight of what policing should be, and there should be a complete overhaul of the service, but this government is far too PC to do that, in my view. I believe, this government just like Theresa May’s has encouraged, and is encouraging, the wrong direction in which policing has gone. Very bad news for the people of this country.

  38. Andy
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:03 am | Permalink

    I don’t use Twitter much but I enjoy the odd browse to see what politicos are saying. And I am most amused at the nastiness from the hard right Brexit nuts to Keir Starmer. The toddlers are finally facing a grown up.

    Thank God Corbyn has gone. Now it’s time to expose the failed incompetence of this Brexit government and to kill off their pathetic project once and for all.

    I suspect the Coronavirus public inquiry will have to come first but we’ll get around to the Brexit one in due course to prosecute the perpetrators.

    • Edward2
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

      What all 17.4 million of us.
      You show trials will take decades.
      Mind you Stalin killed millions of those he didn’t like.

      • bill brown
        Posted April 6, 2020 at 6:56 am | Permalink


        Funny is it not, I did not even mention the test-kits but you obviously know that there was part of the problem about the government not being prepared. Thank you very much clarification

        • Edward2
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

          I take it you have posted further down to where you wanted to post.
          You complain about testing kit preparations further up.
          My point is whilst government prepares for a pandemic in its disaster planning, nobody could predict what virus would emerge to attack us.
          To get tens of millions of reliable test kits made and distributed is a hunger task
          So I ask you again, tell us what the next virus to attack us will be and when it will emerge so we can tell the Government to get manufacturing tens of millions of reliable testing kits ready and waiting.

          • Edward2
            Posted April 6, 2020 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

            huge …not hunger

          • bill brown
            Posted April 7, 2020 at 3:19 pm | Permalink


            tha fact it they planned badly and too late the rest form your side is window dressing drop it

    • graham1946
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

      Most of the nasty stuff comes from people like you. You are the very worst offender here. Perhaps once again we can ask what laws Brexit has broken as you never answer and are obsessed with locking people up. That is a left wing addiction, as evidenced around the world.

      • Edward2
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

        Socialism killed over 50 million people in the twentieth century.
        It is a habit.
        Show trials.
        Firing squad
        Salt mines.
        They start by wanting equality and end by killing their own people who end up eating their own pets to survive.

        • bill brown
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 12:52 am | Permalink

          there are many different interpretations of socialism the Soviet and Chinese model killed millions, whilst the Scandinavian version of socialism (socialdemocrats) created some of the best working and happiest societies in the World

          • Edward2
            Posted April 6, 2020 at 6:13 am | Permalink

            Sweden et al, are not socialist.
            People own their own homes.
            Citizens have the right to own freehold land.
            Farms, companies shops offices businesses are privately owned.
            Privately owned banks exist.
            There is a free press and media.
            There are elections with numerous candidates.
            The State doesn’t tell you where to live and where to work.
            It is world away from socialism.

        • bill brown
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 6:52 am | Permalink

          You missed the point, your definition of socialism is far too narrow and therefore not very valid

          • Edward2
            Posted April 6, 2020 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

            Less die with my narrow definition.

      • bill brown
        Posted April 6, 2020 at 12:53 am | Permalink

        raham 1946 right wing dictatorships lock people up just as well. Hitler, Pinochet, Mussolini

        • graham1946
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 9:32 am | Permalink

          All those in the past. Why don’t you come up to date. The majority currently doing it are leftist. Why support China and its filthy practices, from where the last 3 at least pandemics have come from. Look it up, don’t ask me to do it all for you.

          • bill brown
            Posted April 7, 2020 at 3:18 pm | Permalink


            Burma today there you re right wing dictatorship doing genocide on the Rohinga, check your facts

    • Fred H
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

      Andy – – Don’t know how you fit it all in, newspapers, internet invented nonsens, this diary, twitter, being self-employed, raising a family, checking on the wellbeing of neighbours – – well maybe not all of it.

    • Richard1
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

      I suspect sir Keir will have to ‘pivot’ from his previous stance on Brexit. Then what will you do – put him in prison as well?

      • Andy
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

        He won’t. He is pro-EU and will ultimately push to rejoin. I don’t doubt he will wait until Tory Brexit fails first.

        • Richard1
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:59 pm | Permalink

          It’s a possibility I agree. It needs 2 things: 1) Brexit to be a clear failure and 2) the EU / eurozone to be a clear success. Of course going back in we’d need to be proper members – euro and all. I can assure you, if these 2 conditions clearly hold, I will vote for it. But I think it’s very unlikely.

  39. Richard1
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    Extraordinary interview with a left-wing woman who edits I think the daily mirror on Andrew marr’s programme. Some silly rants about the nhs going into the crisis in a bad state due to ‘austerity’. (No madam, expenditure on the nhs was increased in every year through ‘austerity’ has more doctors and more nurses and treats more patients than ever before etc).

    Then she expressed outrage that an investment firm 15% owned by Jacob Rees Mogg (in the management of which of course he plays no part, being a minister), has reportedly suggested To its clients that falls in valuations might present a buying opportunity for investors. The left wing woman thought this was bad as people would be trying to ‘make a profit’. The depths of ignorance in this are astonishing. Firstly probably every Investment house, broker, banker, private investor in the world is thinking or saying the same thing. Secondly, it is when investors come back into public and private capital markets that confidence and economic activity will return (unless governments deliberately suppress it). Of course people do look at the world in different ways and some people are left wing. But it’s incredible how dim and ignorant some of these leftists are.

    • a-tracy
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

      Did she specifically say which NHS hospitals this month or even this week are in crisis? I’m truly intrigued;
      how many patients do each of these crisis hit hospitals have?
      How many patients do they normally have this month or week in the past three years?
      How many people are on ventilators?
      Have they had an increase in the number of ventilators they can use?
      How many f/t staff do they have on duty? Off sick/self-isolating?
      How many do they usually have? Same for agency/bank staff?
      If the Nightingale hospital in London isn’t required at this moment which hospitals have the biggest crisis and why, why haven’t patients been directed to the Nightingale if certain hospitals are overwhelmed or is this hospital just for photo opportunities?

      • Richard1
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

        Indeed the absence of detail is curious, if not disturbing. In Sweden the equivalent of Prof Whitty broadcasts daily. One of the stats he gives is how many ICU beds are in use – about 1/4 now. (Sweden went into this crisis with fewer ICU beds per capita then the U.K.). We do not get this stat for the U.K. Sweden have not done a lock-down and to the extent possible economic life continues. A social democrat led govt is recognising that there is a massive economic cost to lock down.

        In the U.K. we now have 16-17k people in hospital due to the CCP virus. But the NHS employs 1.5m people – 100 or so for each CCPV patient. Is the NHS really overrun or is it likely to be? I think MPs should request more specific data. Are we in fact in lock down not because it will save lives but it will save face and avoid a few thousand patients having to be looked after in field hospitals etc?

  40. Original Chris
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:18 am | Permalink

    I feel you are being disingenuous, by omission, when you state there is no treatment or cure for Corona Virus, Sir John.

    Why has the US FDA (Food and Drug Administration) given emergency authorisation for hydroxychloroquine treatment, which has been based on evidence obtained in the field demonstrating that it is effective? See link to article below, plus links to FDA and HHS*.

    “FDA Issues Emergency Authorization for the Use of Hydroxychloroquine to Combat Coronavirus Effective Immediately…”

    See also from the FDA website:

    “When used under the conditions described in this authorization, the KNOWN AND POTENTIAL BENEFITS of chloroquine phosphate and hydroxychloroquine sulfate when used to treat COVID-19 OUTWEIGH the known and potential risks of such products,” FDA Chief Scientist Denise M. Hinton wrote in the approval letter.
    The FDA wrote that “based on the totality of scientific evidence available to FDA, it is reasonable to believe that chloroquine phosphate and hydroxychloroquine sulfate may be effective in treating COVID-19.”

    “When used under the conditions described in this authorization, the known and potential benefits of chloroquine phosphate and hydroxychloroquine sulfate when used to treat COVID-19 outweigh the known and potential risks of such products,” FDA Chief Scientist Denise M. Hinton wrote in the approval letter…

    Furthermore, the US Dept of Health and Human Services* have accepted donations from the big pharmaceutical companies of hydroxychloroquine for immediate use in the fight against CV.
    “HHS accepts donations of medicine to Strategic National Stockpile as possible treatments for COVID-19 patients.

    • Original Chris
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:19 am | Permalink

      Also, this from Novartis CEO when referring to global pandemic stockpile being created:—novartis-chief/45653476#.XoXXhLa_ctY.twitter

      Quest for cure ‘Anti-malaria drug can kill coronavirus’: Novartis chief
      This content was published on April 3, 2020 2:10 PM Apr 3, 2020 – 14:10

      Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis believes the anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine offers one of the best hopes to combat coronavirus and has donated 130 million doses as part of the pandemic response.
      “Pre-clinical studies in animals as well as the first data from clinical studies show that hydroxychloroquine kills the coronavirus,” Novartis Chief Executive Vas Narasimhan told the SonntagsZeitung newspaperexternal link on March 29.

      • a-tracy
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:07 pm | Permalink

        Isn’t this what Trump said and was derided for saying?

        • Original Chris
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:21 pm | Permalink

          Yes, a-tracy. P Trump is usually right.

    • John E
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

      The Indians have banned all exports of hydroxychloroquine. I wonder where we get it from?

  41. BOF
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    I find it truly shocking that all deaths WITH coronavirus are being reported as having died OF it, which is a blatant distortion of the truth, and could be interpreted as deliberate manipulation.

    Please Sir John, can you direct your efforts to ensuring that this changes and we get accurate, balanced and truthful reporting of the statistics.

    • Original Chris
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

      That is disgraceful, if true, BOF. It completely distorts the epidemiology. No wonder we don’t trust politicians/Government.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

        It does not distort that fact, that hospitals, staff, and undertakers, around the world, are being completely overwhelmed.

        • Zorro
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 12:00 am | Permalink

          Not by COVID 19 deathloads as they are a fraction of the normal deathload by other diseases. Show me the money!


    • Data Please
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

      I’m not aware of any data that identifies the numbers of those in the UK who have had the disease but with symptoms that didn’t require medical assistance and hence form a body of data that is unknown at this stage.

      Without such, data attempts cannot be made to determine the lethality of the disease amongst the general population or the demographics of those not needing medical assistance.

      There’s also a complete lack of breakdown of the data being reported as far as I’m aware, which I’d be surprised if it isn’t available, such as how many serious cases were due to such as the following in no particular order:
      – smokers
      – existing chronic diseases
      – those identified as vulnerable
      – age group
      – regular commuters on overcrowded tube trains
      – care workers
      – key workers
      – members of family of previous cases
      etc, etc

      With similar breakdowns of those that tragically died.

      Without this data granulation, we are exposed to wide ranging Govt dictacts of Draconian, Economy Busting nature that until we are told differently I can only assume have not been subject to any form of demographic intelligence that may support a more finessed strategy.

      The result being, the majority of us are being increasingly forced into health affecting 24/7 House Arrest.

      Its starting to look like an administration with terminal tunnel vision, reaching for ever more stringent opression than data driven flexibility.

      If you don’t measure it, you can’t control it.

      • Sir Joe Soap
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:27 pm | Permalink

        We are given two figures-

        1 Newly infected cases, though these are based on numbers of tests which are increasing, so it is likely that in a plateau of actual cases, more tests will lead to more infections being recorded

        2 Deaths, though these exclude deaths in care homes or residential settings I understand, and include deaths due to causes which include but aren’t exclusively due to CV and might have happened anyway.

  42. Original Chris
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    Excellent article in Mail on Sunday online, at long last, reporting on the strong challenges by other top scientists to Neil Ferguson and the Imperial College modelling findings. The government/Boris have been accused of treating Ferguson like a “demi-god”.

    Ministers are accused of treating Doomsday scientist like demigod: Number 10 has failed to properly challenge the word of coronavirus professor Neil Ferguson whose study sent Britain into lockdown, critics say
    Professor John Ashton accuses No 10 of relying on a ‘little clique’ of researchers
    He also accused Downing Street of failing to consult a wider pool of academics
    Professor Neil Ferguson and team forecast 250,000 UK deaths with no lockdown”

    This challenge is long overdue and there should have been much stronger challenges from far more Cons MPs who have first hand experience of what is going on in their constituencies. I appreciate Sir John has been making efforts to alert No 10.

    • forthurst
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

      The government consists of people who are so far removed from the concept of scientific knowledge that they have no idea how to solicit it in a rational fashion when they need it. What is the purpose of a Chief Scientific Advisor; presumably so the government can just lazily turn to one individual every time they have a query of a scientific nature and not bother to do the hard work of obtaining the names of all those whose expertise is relevant to a particular issue. Contrast that with China which convoked an expert team of virologists and epidemiologists to give it consist advice with an action plan to eliminate the virus as soon as practicable. These people are very concerned about preventing a new outbreak, either imported or from symptomless cases in Wuhan and the government listens to them.

      It’s actually quite appalling to witness how amateurish the British government is in the way it goes about running our country.

      • SM
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:36 pm | Permalink

        I think yours is one of the most idiotic comments I have yet seen, forthurst, but then you do seem to have a naive faith in the honesty of the Chinese State.

        A Govt has a Chief Scientific Advisor and would expect that CSA to have a list of all the relevant specialists. Just the same with a Chief Medical Officer, or the most senior officers in the Armed Forces in case of the threat of military attack.

        One of the most important questions to be asked when all this is over is surely why the results of Operation Cygnus were hushed up – why are politicians so terrified of revealing what an organisational mess stands behind the initials NHS, and has done for decades?

        • forthurst
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:10 pm | Permalink

          You are suggesting that the combined wisdom of the most distinguished virologists and epidemiologists in the UK after seven weeks consideration decided to recommend a policy of ‘herd immunity’ when the South Korean epidemic had peaked a fortnight previously and then almost immediately panicked and demanded an immediate lockdown bringing much of the economy to a grinding halt?

          If the government has a list of all the experts in all the fields which I very much doubt, then there is absolutely no evidence that they have made use of them rather than listening to one individual at a time and changing course accordingly.

          I have no faith in figures produced by this government which has not been testing or collating other than those admitted to hospital. I suggest the government’s figures are out by a factor of about ten.

  43. Ian @Barkham
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    Good morning Sir John

    Thank you for the update on local issues, it is appreciated.

    As LifeLogic (8:43) has highlighted the Governments policy is trying to lengthen the period we have to cope with this dreaded virus. Their policies are focused on easing the burden on the NHS not, fighting the virus and restoring the economy to fund all these projects. They have gone for large debt not a strong economy. You could say another generation of purgatory on top of Gordon Browns already established burden that will still take a generation to pay down.

    We do cripple ourselves with continued bad Government in this country. Massive egos, poor advice and the concept that only having a ruling class is somehow democracy

    If the lock-down was to work in accordance with the Government science advisors there would be no more cases of Corvid-19 from a week tomorrow on. It would have died out as there would be no host for it to thrive on. The fight against the virus is not the Government objective and some people just don’t care as it is nothing to do with them.

  44. MeSET
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:58 am | Permalink

    Posted December 22, 2019 at 10:41 pm Unpublished
    My Predictions for 2020 A-Z

    D. World commodities will go into overproduction mode for a while, then
    E. China will relax, inviting much more international investment CORRECT
    L. Germany will continue to decline CORRECT
    M. Canadian economy will sink CORRECT
    O. Varadkar will fall from grace.CORRECT
    U. A near Earth meteor event.CORRECT via NASA info plus moon asteroid CORRECT
    X. The usual sex-scandals CORRECT ( I can’t name them but we can take it as a done )

    A quarter of the year 2020 gone, a quarter predictions correct. I’m proud of the Space prediction.

  45. Caterpillar
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    In terms of leaving lockdown, it was indicated last week that the first results of the 3500 per week sample antibody tests would be known this weekend.

    Do we know when the Govt will inform us of the results and the conclusion on background prevalence (and ideally the raw data set)? I do not want to hear anymore hiding behind: learning all the time, feeding it into the models and informing scientific judgement. Although ‘we’ are not medical science experts there are many who can build models and crunch data.

  46. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:20 am | Permalink

    The last time my wife checked, the Sainsbury and Tesco backlogs for home deliveries was three weeks. Is it any better now?

    I worry about my wife. I am 73 and a dialysis patient so she has imposed a curfew on me. She shops at supermarkets as much as ever. She thinks that as she is “only” 67 and in good health she is invulnerable. But the Coronavirus mortality rate for 60 to 69 is half of the rate for 70 to 79 (Chinese data); hardly invulnerable.

    • ed2
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:45 am | Permalink

      But the Coronavirus mortality rate for 60 to 69 is half of the rate for 70 to 79 (Chinese data); hardly invulnerable.

      The mortality rate is identical to the natural mortality rate for this time of year.

    • Sea Warrior
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

      I don’t know – but my last two visits to my Tesco have been pleasant, with the stores being less crowded than pre-crisis. Tesco has done a good job of reducing risks for both customers and staff. I’m in your wife’s age bracket and will be leaving home delivery slots for others. Best wishes.

    • Cheshire Girl
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 2:51 pm | Permalink


      I am in the vulnerable group, and haven’t been able to get an online delivery for a month.

      Yesterday, I tried most of the the online sites, and there were no slots. However, I then tried Waitrose, and was on the point of giving up, when, many slots came up labelled as unavailable, there was just one at the bottom for 5 days time. I took it, and was so relieved,

      I have a neighbour, nearly blind and she rang Sainsburys Head Office, and they gave her a slot immediately. Its worth a try.

      • Original Chris
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

        Where is Sainsbury’s head office? Has anyone got contact details? I have been wanting to do this for ages as I cannot get any delivery slots at all. I get caught up in a circular system of phone messages referring you to the website and then back to the phone line, getting nowhere, and to add insult to injury I keep getting emails from Sainsburys saying everything possible for the elderly/vulnerable etc and giving them priority slots. Nonsense. It is impossible to get on their list in the first place. They apparently do not want to make it possible for you to register. I cannot go into Customer Services in our local shop as I am self isolating.

        • Original Chris
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:32 pm | Permalink

          Have now found the head office number. I hadn’t been able to locate it on the Sainsbury’s online website. Thank you, Cheshire Girl.

        • Round and round
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:09 pm | Permalink

          I got a circular system of Delay like that from Tesco. I wished to make a simple enquiry.

      • graham1946
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

        If you register with Sainsbury’s as over 70 or vulnerable, they will prioritise slots for you. Not always available straight away, but if you go to your account one will become available quicker. Just keep trying and they will come up. Hope that’s of some assistance.

        • Original Chris
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:24 pm | Permalink

          Thanks, graham, but there is nowhere on your account that you can state that you are over 70 or whatever.

          • graham1946
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

            To be honest I can’t remember how it was done. I think when I opened my account some years ago it must have been there because they emailed me to say I was on their vulnerable over 70’s list from info previously supplied. Just googled it and it says they are prioritising elderly and vulnerable so maybe they are not taking new ones. Sorry if that’s the case, but worth trying to open an account anyway even if you don’t use it. Costs nothing.

          • graham1946
            Posted April 5, 2020 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

            Just found on Google Sainsbury’s are not taking new registrations. Sorry.

  47. We will win
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:22 am | Permalink

    Coronavirus simulation ran by World Heath Organisation using the pandemic simulation experts, fake doctors and actors to deceive the world and destroy small businesses on behalf of big business. The people who make the coronavirus test kits also are appearing on the MSM as coronavirus victims. We will win in the end.

    Gods people.

  48. BillM
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    What do Government say about the new coronavirus testing programmes utilising Private Labs, now that the disastrous PHE plan of Private Sector centralisation has been totally discredited and kept the UK at the bottom of the World league table?

    • Mark
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

      Japan has a population almost twice ours, and has only done 44,639 tests, or less than a quarter of the number done in the UK. They have very few deaths (77) or cases (3,139) so far. It is not testing that keeps the virus in check. Japan has also largely kept its economy functioning.

      • BillM
        Posted April 6, 2020 at 9:45 am | Permalink

        Japan has successfully excluded visitors from infected areas.
        The testing programmes of S Korea and Taiwan et al, have proven their worth. How many NHS staff are locked up “SUSPECTED” of having the virus but not positively tested? 100K?
        Even the WHO issued a statement telling all countries to ‘test, test, test’. Why would they do that if it were irrelevant?

  49. Sea Warrior
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    Perhaps the government should remove the business rates holiday from those companies that don’t need it. I’m thinking, in particular, of the large supermarket chains. I don’t begrudge them making their profits – they have, I think, done a good job of keeping us fed and have kept pricing stable – but their tills are ringing loud and they have no need of government support. The government finances have, on the other hand, been soundly trashed. Action needed!

    • a-tracy
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

      I believe the business rates holiday is only for businesses in the cafe, restaurant, hotel trade that were forced to close not those who chose to close.

  50. Fred H
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    Speaking to the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, Sir Keir said: “What we can’t do is go back to business as usual we now know who the key workers are, they have very often been overlooked, underpaid and there has got to be a change.”

    Whats not to like?

    • ukretired123
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

      Another Union puppet from the metropolis whose sound bytes mask his total ignorance of SMEs and how the Private Sector is the golden goose not the bureaucratic failing public sector.

      The Nurses and Doctors battle against the 72 year old ancient systems of the NHS but it’s a national scandal that it cannot deliver despite the billions that are thrown at it as infinitum. Claiming credit for it and the Welfare State he never mentioned the Client State millstone they imposed on us not the scandal of 60 years to pay off rip-off hospitals under Blair and Brown (sorry there’s no money Left!).

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:23 pm | Permalink

      This division of people into “key workers” and the rest is rather obnoxious and rather idiotic. Especially when even “lawyers” are put into the Key workers section?

      • Sir Joe Soap
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:23 pm | Permalink

        Yes, rubbish.
        In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

      😂😂 NUT is going to love that! Teachers not key workers!
      Bye then Kier ..

  51. Irene
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

    Meanwhile, back in the real world, there was a 2 hour wait to get into our local Sainsbury’s on Friday. Today, the queue goes half-way round the perimeter of the fairly large car park. Is it any wonder people don’t believe a word about supply chains sorted, supermarkets being on top of the job, panic-buying all a thing of the past. Is it any wonder people are getting into their cars and driving round to a less local supermarket.

    BTW, don’t suppose you know the current ‘rules’ on bonfires, do you? As the recycling centres are closed until further notice, people are now disposing of all sorts of waste by lighting bonfires. Just the sort of irresponsible behaviour that could really do damage to people who may not count in the statistics, but who may be self-isolating with their respiratory problems and possible Covid-19 symptoms at home.

    And another thing – did you know that the word ‘household’ means different things to different people? Some people interpret the word ‘household’ to mean ‘family members’ and are travelling fair distances to visit members of their own family.

    • Caterpillar
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

      Not only fires, but much more fly tipping (or less cleared) in my area. With the recycling centres/tips closed I thought it would be logical for councils to collect more rubbish, but it seems to be less. In my part of the country the bin collectors still seem to be sticking to a rule that if your wheelie bin lid doesn’t close they’ll usually leave it unemptied. There are some rules that are silly at the best of times, but this one is even more silly now (presumably this varies between councils).

    • Irene
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

      Good to hear the Dep CMO at this afternoon’s press briefing mention the distinction between family and household. Even tho’ my comment above appears now – for some reason – somewhat truncated. That distinction is something that should have been made much clearer before now.

  52. Javelin
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    I strongly suggest somebody in Government reads the comments in The Telegraph and then tells Matt Hancock to put a sock in it before he triggers rioting.

    • glen cullen
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

      and yet he’s back on TV right now

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

      People would have more confidence in the urgency of all this if all passengers arriving at Heathrow and other airports were sequestrated in cells for 14 days before entering the underground, cars and society in the UK.

  53. Original Chris
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

    A very straightforward tweet by one Robert Barnes on the blindingly obvious effects of shutdown on our healthcare, but which seems to have escaped our politicians.

    Our politicians did not rigorously scrutinise the Imperial College policy, they did not apparently listen to other scientists (but instead operated as a “clique” according to M on Sunday), nor did they make any attempt at a cost benefit analysis of these draconian measures now implemented. I call that negligent, and it also wreaks of incompetence.

    “Turns out somebody should have measured effect of shutting down economy before comparing alternative remedies. No economy = less health care. Less health care = higher mortality & shorter life expectancy over time, as well as lower quality of life & less freedom. America > Cuba.

    • Original Chris
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:36 pm | Permalink

      PS In my comment above, the tweet by Robert Barnes that I referred to starts “Turns out somebody should have measured effect of shutting down economy before….”

  54. Ian @Barkham
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    The new Multi Millionaire leader of the Socialist party, says he will work with Government to tackle Corvid-19. Then said the Government has made lots of mistakes and need holding to account.

    As part of the do as I say not as I do lead, he travelled around the TV studios to day – against advice of avoid unnecessary travel. Video links interfere with ego.

    He told the NHS that they are not appreciated and aren’t getting paid enough.

    On and on the contradictions go. Lets not sort todays problems out lets do tomorrows battle today. To hell with the people that put their lives at risk, get a life if you have lost a loved one people will die so I can seem important – that’s the spirit.

    • Know-Dice
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

      And the police intend to prosecute two people that had a barbecue on the beach in Brighton with no other people in sight and not prosecute the 20+ “fans” of the new Labour party leader clearly NOT obeying the social distancing “instruction”.

      They [the police] will lose the support of the community if they are seen to operate in this fashion.

      • steve
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

        Know Dice

        “They [the police] will lose the support of the community if they are seen to operate in this fashion.”

        ……..plod, like most of the civil service sold their souls years ago under Labour. Tony’s friend Jacqui bribed ’em off.

        Enforcing unwanted laws made by unpopular government is their mission. And they talk of policing by consent…. who’s consent ?

        Enshrined rights take precedence over unpopular laws as far as I and most Englishmen are concerned. Unless of course, they are going to tell us democracy is dead.

    • Martin R
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

      To be honest as a socialist, everything he’s likely to get up to is unnecessary as well.

    • Cheshire Girl
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:04 pm | Permalink

      And its particularly galling, when he keeps saying ‘I wont do political points scoring’ when that is exactly what he is doing.

      He just cant help himself.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

      There is no party calling itself the Socialist Party.

      • Edward2
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

        No they hide under the banner of the Labour Party.

        • bill brown
          Posted April 7, 2020 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

          Edward 2

          Do not worry there is nothing wrong with not always being right, but then you also have to admit it, like saying that all Eu nations have to join the EURO , even if treaties say the contrary. Relax and admit it , it’s OK it will not hurt

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

        No, but 3 Parties acting like socialist parties – and the SNP acting like a national socialist party. Thank God for the DUP!

  55. Lifelogic
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

    Osborne on the World this Weekend just now:- “No one in advance was saying you need to have thousand of ventilators available in some warehouse for a crisis such as this.”

    Well what on earth were these idiotic pandemic planners doing? Who were they?

    No need even to store actually finished ventilators – just a plan, with a few key components and some suitable tooling. You could have easily organised this for well under £5 million. With this plan you could then built say 50,000 ventilators well within the two months we have had for about £100 million (£2,000 each). All that was needed was someone sensible with a knowledge of production engineering, some one with medical knowledge and some suitable ventilator designs.

    The could and should easily have also been done for PPE and other likely to be needed equipment.

    Doubtless they spent far, far more on the pandemic exercise they arranged (and the buried and censored the results). Doubtless once this is over this they will spend billions on Lawyers and expensive inquiries.

    All that was needed was a few practical engineers and some advice from ICU doctors. Then we would not be in shutdown costing £hundreds of billions.

    Let us hope our defence planners are not so useless! I rather suspect they are.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

      All that was needed at Grenville was some sensible engineers to tell the net zero carbon green loons that expensive cladding of the building (to save totally trivial amounts or energy) was idiotic, a compete waste of money and could be very dangerous indeed (if not done with non-flammable materials). Then another sensible person needed who could see that evacuation needed to happen early in the fire as was blindingly obvious.

      Obvious to those not educated into stupidity by “fire expert protocol” training that is.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:14 pm | Permalink

        The building was clad mainly for aesthetic reasons.

        If Building Control were properly resourced, and could enforce appropriate regulations, then the building would never have caught fire, and so instructions as to what to do would have been immaterial.

        Your post is disgraceful.

        Nothing like this has happened anywhere else in Europe.

        Five million people are still at risk here, and cannot sell their properties.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

          It was NOT clad for aesthetic reasons! You just say anything that comes into your head, dry run a few counter factuals for heavens sake.

        • Mark
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:32 pm | Permalink

          I read the planning application. It was all about boasting about the projected energy savings and meeting and beating building regulation standards of insulation. If you worked it out from the data in the application (I did, and reported on it here), it would have taken over 200 years for the energy savings to pay for the project.

          All the details are still available via the planning website, and doubtless via the Grenfell Enquiry.

          • Lifelogic
            Posted April 6, 2020 at 1:43 am | Permalink

            Exactly and the 200 years probably assumes no interest on the capital – with that it would never repay at all.

    • SM
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

      Try reading Dr Strauss on why ventilators are NOT a universal panacea.

      Try reading some other medical literature on the complications arising in patients from ventilator usage.

      Try reading some medical information on the medical staffing complexities of keeping patients on ventilators.

      You are so busy shouting, LL, you have no time for listening.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:14 pm | Permalink

      Pandemic, nuclear and terrorist likely scenarios for a start should have been modelled, then some plans made for likely requirements. If it had been a nuclear attack, I presume we’d be scouting around for a plan for sourcing lead shielding and anti-radiation drugs? Given the complexity of our lives as they were three weeks ago, perhaps somebody, somewhere in the NHS could sit down and write out a list of the top ten threats and how the NHS prepares logistically for them?

  56. Jiminyjim
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

    Sir John, two new fly tips in our vicinity today. It is becoming an epidemic, and it is directly caused by the ridiculous closure of the municipal centres, where the tiniest bit of management would have very easily kept people apart by well over 2 metres.
    If you or HMG think that this ‘social distancing’ is going to continue for any length of time, something must be done to reopen the municipal centres, or our countryside will be overrun with fly tips and rats

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

      What a squalid lot so many British are, eh, Jim?

      • steve
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:48 pm | Permalink

        Speak for yourself, Martin.

        What you appear to forget is that people pay via their council tax for such municipal facilities.

        Will council tax be adjusted to compensate ? will there be any suggestion in town halls of a rebate for loss of publicly funded services ?

        No, the local authorities will continue to pocket the money taken for running facilities that are closed.

        But fret not, there will still be Council Chief Executives on salaries exceeding £100K who don’t have to live anywhere near fly tipping so all will be well.

      • Edward2
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

        Had Local Authorities bothered to keep waste reception sites open then fly tipping would not have happened.
        Quite possible to do that safely.

      • Fred H
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

        but not in China though?

      • SM
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:44 pm | Permalink

        If you lived in a flat with no garden or garage, what would you do with your rubbish if the recycling centres were shut, Martin?

  57. Political class gone
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

    I call upon the Labour Party, Lib Dems, SNP and Conservative parties to all resign so the sun can shine once more over England. This was a live drill, a simulation. You have all failed us.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:46 pm | Permalink


      How does the concept that a self appointed political gang, that subsequently only appoint their chums to stand in constituencies, square with government by the people for the people. When in reality the system is loaded to keep the people out and suppress Democracy unless it is on the terms as decreed by the gangs.

    • Edward2
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

      So who would you replace them with?

      • Political class gone
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

        So who would you replace them with?

        A jury service type system?

        • Edward2
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 6:19 am | Permalink

          Appointed and chosen by whom?

          And how do you get rid of jury members who are no good?

  58. rose
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

    So the Scottish National Socialists have been hoist with their own anglophobic petard: it was obviously only meant to be a brand new made up rule against the Royal Family and the English, not intended to apply to them.

    Dr Calderwood got the job because she is an SNP sympathiser but the obvious candidate is Professor Hugh Pennington of Aberdeen University. His knowledge would be invaluable. But Wee Nicola won’t choose him because he’s a Unionist. And, of course, he is a man.

    • Richard1
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

      What’s this about?

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:18 pm | Permalink

        The Chief Medical Officer of Scotland has broken her own lockdown rules by visiting her holiday home, twice, to make sure it had not up and off’ed.
        Thank God she is a woman, how dreadful would this have been if a man had done similar!

        • Richard1
          Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

          Ah OK. Indeed if you issue public pronouncements you really need to do as you say.

        • glen cullen
          Posted April 6, 2020 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

          didn’t realise till yesterday that the UK has 4 chief medical officers one for each region….money for old rope

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

      Sounds rather likely. I dislike Ms Sturgeon and her “National Socialist Party of Scotland” almost as much as I dislike Theresa May, Cast Iron Cameron, George Osborne, D Grieve, Philip Hammond, war on a blatant lie Tony Blair and John (ERM fiasco) Major. Why is she (and indeed all of the above) endlessly on the BBC even in England? As is Ian Blackford who is also most unpleasant and equally misguided?

  59. Ginty
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

    This week alone the UK has gone from the sublime to the ridiculous…
    Matt Hancock announces that the £13bn debt that the NHS has run up is going to be written off. Everyone praises this action but how can we just write off £13bn of debt, for let’s face it, years of shambolic management and a total abuse of taxpayer’s money?

    Teachers are told to ‘guess’ the grades that their students might have achieved in their GCSE’s and A levels, and that will be the grades they get. How can that happen after they have all just lost 1 year of their education?

    The Metropolitan Police report a 65% increase in domestic abuse calls! STAY HOME STAY SAFE…not if you’re some poor person getting abused. And let’s not forget that the only people telling us all to ‘stay home stay safe…’ are those all securely in their jobs with their salaries rolling in on a regular basis.

    Over 1 million people sign up for universal credit in one week!
    Its announced that a third of all businesses in the UK are to go bust in the next 2-3 weeks. All those workers that have been furloughed for three months will for certain have no jobs to come back to as there will be no businesses. Furloughing is really just a way of letting the staff down gently.

    But this next little gem is the icing on the cake…
    The Royal Brompton Hospital in London currently has only four (YES YOU HEARD ME RIGHT – FOUR!) patients in it (a 350-capacity hospital) and the reason for that is just in case St Thomas Hospital (an 850-capacity hospital) has an over-flow of patients! I was under the impression that all hospitals were bursting at the gills, hence the need for the Nightingale Hospitals, and that the NHS were under such pressure?

    The ONS death stats for the UK:
    Number of deaths 23/03/18 – 11,913
    Number of deaths 22/03/19 – 10,402
    Number of deaths 20/03/20 – 10,645
    Average over last 5years – 10,573

    I love the way that everyone is blaming the coronavirus for all that is happening in the UK, but there is only one person that I blame for the collapse of our economy, the removal of our basic rights and freedoms, the mother of all recessions that is set to hit our country, and unemployment to hit an all-time high, and that is Boris Johnson.

    The stats prove that so far, there’s been no crisis at all! What a legacy he will leave…and for what?

    We all follow so mindlessly like lost sheep, all pathetically thinking that this will be over in three months and life will return to normal, but it won’t. Life as we’ve known it will never return and it will take the country decades to recover. When, for GOD sake, are the rest of the country going to wake up!

    • Ginty
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

      We are told that the better we lock down the sooner the pandemic will be over but this in patently untrue.

      The point of lock down is to deliberately EXTEND the pandemic in order to regulate the flow of casualties.

      So that’s the economy completely stuffed then. A truly life threatening economic depression looms and that will kill people of all age groups.

      Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:59 pm | Permalink

      Spot on Ginty, spot on

      We’re now being exposed to full-on propaganda with the NHS ensconced at the centre of it all in some rather disturbing attempt at emotional blackmail.

      It’s all pretty disturbing stuff.

      This PM has in one foul swoop destroyed the memory and legacy of Thatcher.

      Private sector hung out to dry to protect the public sector and all designed to protect the Tory party

      I always used knew Johnson was an Oxbridge PPE charlatan just like Cameron

    • ed2
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:11 pm | Permalink

      Over 1 million people sign up for universal credit in one week!
      Its announced that a third of all businesses in the UK are to go bust in the next 2-3 weeks.

      Whats the army doing in all this?

  60. John
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

    “The NHS has notified people whose other medical conditions make them more vulnerable to the severe version of the disease. ”
    No they haven’t. I have leukaemia and I haven’t been notified. My GP practice knows nothing about it and has not been contacted. I am far from the only one.

    Reply Your GP should know, but you have been notified in the general warnings and advice issued regularly and in public , and are writing to me about it.

    • a-tracy
      Posted April 6, 2020 at 10:01 am | Permalink

      JR, I know what you are saying ‘people have been advised by the media to self-isolate for 12 weeks with underlying conditions’ BUT if people haven’t had letters from their GP they now think they’re ok to go out to the shops because their GP hasn’t sent them a letter. I’ve been making a family member self-isolate for three weeks now because they’ve had pneumonia twice, had three stents fitted last year and have other medicated conditions but their GP hasn’t told them to isolate so they now think they can go the shop and out for a walk!

  61. steve
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:30 pm | Permalink


    “But Wee Nicola won’t choose him because he’s a Unionist. And, of course, he is a man.”

    Aint that the truth of it !

  62. ukretired123
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

    Red Flag!!!

    That link you posted at the start directs you to what appears to be an adult site!!!
    Needs unlinking please , you may have been infected!

    Reply I missed the link at the top of the post. I want no such links here and have deleted the whole post as soon as I saw your helpful notification. It makes me realise how important it is I delete more posts with links. Will people who want to b e posted here avoid them please.

  63. acorn
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

    On behalf of the Inter-Galaxy Banking Clan, the Supreme Chancellor would like to explain his current operations on the planet Earth.

    You are probably not aware that the Galaxy Supreme Chancellor (GSC), allows random development to occur on planets, over four decades of Earth time. It then carries out a periodic selection process when the gauges indicate that a planet and its dominant species has basically lost the plot to use an Earth term.

    The periodic selection process on Earth required a catalyst, the GSC selected the viral pandemic option on this occasion. This is designed to reset the mind set of the dominant species. It has to relearn that you can not base planet Earth’s socio-economic future on buying and selling Collateralised Debt Obligations and Credit Default Swaps.

    • Edward2
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

      More tonic.

    • Time Lord
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

      One worries the sanity of some Commentors

      • acorn
        Posted April 6, 2020 at 5:49 am | Permalink

        Not into Wookieepedia, the Star Wars Wiki then? Alas, understandable on a closed minded leavers site.

      • Fred H
        Posted April 6, 2020 at 7:45 am | Permalink

        I agree. The BBC is full of them.

  64. Anonymous
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 7:52 pm | Permalink

    Mr Hancock must realise that his authority on lock down is wafer thin. To put the whole nation under house arrest because of a few hundred in Brockley Park will see a revolt.

    The police can handle many things but not mums with children – as XR proved in demonstrations last year.

    What they going to use ? Rubber bullets ?

    • Anonymous
      Posted April 5, 2020 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

      PS, the affection for the rainbow NHS is not nearly as widespread as it seems.

      The badge needs to go.

  65. Ed M
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:05 pm | Permalink

    @Sir John,

    The country’s got to get back to work otherwise far worse things are going to happen than the coronavirus. Can the gov please:

    1) Focus on creating a really effective system to make the old and vulnerable as safe as possible until vaccination and/or some really effective treatment is avail?
    2) Implement really efficient social-distancing system using cheap technologies and apps and techniques like in China to help people get back to work as safely as possible
    And of course, ramp up, big time:
    3) Testing
    4) Ventilators
    5) PPE
    6) Intensive care beds
    Perhaps we should be planning to get things back to ‘normal’ by 1 June. Can the country’s economy be frozen for more than 3 months? Plus 1st June would give the NHS the summer to take in more coronavirus patients. Not forgetting we would then have the virus looming again in the autumn and the threat to our economy then as well.

  66. MP Election Agent
    Posted April 5, 2020 at 11:10 pm | Permalink

    LEAD us back to work!
    You know JR, in trade unions, despite perhaps some politicians believing, wishing, Shop Stewards and Convenors compelled workers to strike it was often the case the workers themselves were the driving force for a strike and I have heard in meetings “If we don’t lead the strike they will go on to strike by themselves” ( they wished to stay in control( and POWER) so they led the strike). Similarly on a return to work. That’s how it worked.

    Lead us back to work! I tweeted the same to Dehenna Davison MP some time ago. I would like her to stay as MP. But of course she would never take my advice. Why should she?
    I could but try.

  67. Familiarity
    Posted April 6, 2020 at 12:57 am | Permalink

    Trump has argued with some support by certain medical people that the drug with sometimes another depending on a persons heart condition ( malaria treatment ) has shown positive results in killing the Virus and he advocated it as a last ditch method where a patient is going to die if nothing is not found immediately to help. He points out the two drugs have for decades proven safe and used, and do not need to be retested. But politics get in the way. But he is going to have his way. He is releasing it and so far has saved some lives. It is up to the doctors to choose to use it. I believe the UK, has refused to use it. The experts it seems would rather people die as maybe they are afraid of lawyers. We Brexiteers love lawyers don’t we,
    Boldly go!

  68. Mark
    Posted April 6, 2020 at 1:07 am | Permalink

    It seems evident that different parts of the country do better than others at the art of social distancing, and have lower infection rates to show for it. They deserve to be rewarded by some relaxation of the lockdown, albeit there is still a need to avoid a social free-for-all. There needs to be a focus on trying to find ways to compartmentalise groups of people in ways that minimise cross-infection risk while getting them back to work. That is evidently hard to do in central London, where the criss-cross of commuters from anywhere and everywhere poses lots of risk. But travel by isolating motor car can allow many to resume at least some work.

    • Stred
      Posted April 6, 2020 at 8:45 am | Permalink

      We have abandoned my wife’s house in London and moved away to mine before the clampdown. This was suggested by the deputy chief medical officer. We can have company and share less dangerous shopping.
      Now it is reported that the government is letting criminals out early for their safety. Let’s hope that they don’t see empty houses as an opportunity. Sometimes we have to wonder whether this so called Conservative government has gone collectively mad.

  69. margaret
    Posted April 6, 2020 at 8:29 pm | Permalink

    If you count the word of lifelogic in comaparison to Martin in Cardiff Lifelogic takes more space. The comments are about even

  70. margaret
    Posted April 6, 2020 at 8:30 pm | Permalink

    comparison ,, another comment\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\1

  71. ed2
    Posted April 7, 2020 at 8:50 am | Permalink

    We need to get out of lock down as soon as possible.

    Sweden is doing just fine. Although whoever controls our MSM also controls theirs.

  72. david englehart
    Posted April 12, 2020 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    I carry on a small solicitors practice in Hove with 12 solicitors and 16 or so support and other staff. I own my building and converted it from a neglected open plan auction house to an office where everybody has their own room. My personal clients are mostly landlords of commercial premises. Sympathy or help for them is in short supply. However my advice to them and help in living with tenants who are genuine is important and essential. I have prepared in depth fact sheets to my landlord clients to try and ease things both in their interests and those of the country at large. The protection for tenants so far brought out is admirable but because it was urgent there are many holes in it. Peoples’ livelihoods and futures are at risk and the sooner the lock down is eased the better.
    This virus has also exposed the dangers of open plan offices as against individual rooms. A lenders valuer once told me i had lost huge value by creating all these small individual rooms and wide corridors. i did reply that if we ever sold a weekend of my wife and me smashing the partition walls down would soon adjust that. He blinked as that had not occurred to him.

  • 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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