Chairman's Column - 1 June 2021
Published on Tuesday, 1st June 2021
Time for Reflection
“Looking back, it seems an age ago when in December 2019, China reported a cluster of cases of pneumonia in Wuhan, Hubei Province. However, as we now know, that ‘pneumonia’ was eventually identified as a Coronavirus. In January 2020 officials confirmed Coronavirus in Thailand, the first recorded case outside China. Deeply concerned by the severity and levels of spread, and by the alarming levels of inaction, The World Health Organisation made the assessment that this Coronavirus Disease of 2019 (or as we know it now, COVID-19) could be characterized as a pandemic.
“The first two cases of COVID-19 in the UK were diagnosed on January 29, 2020 and not even when Coronavirus first arrived in Essex on 1 March 2020, did anyone really have an idea of the scale of what was to come. On 27 March Maldon District Council held its last physical meeting where a majority of members agreed to go into Emergency Powers with the Directors and key Council members making the decisions about the running of the Council. By April an alarming rise in this new disease was being recorded all over Europe, Asia, North Africa and New Zealand. Indeed, hardly a corner of the earth escaped its deadly grip.
“The next 8 months were very bleak indeed with the loss of thousands of lives and millions of illnesses. The only glimmer of hope was the research work on a number of wonder vaccines with thousands of brave volunteers allowing themselves to be tested with it. I cannot praise or thank them enough. Then at 06:31 GMT on Tuesday 8 December 2020, 90-year-old Margaret Keenan from Coventry received the Pfizer BioNTech shot - one week before her 91st birthday. Of the vaccine she said, “Go for it! It’s free, and it’s the best thing that has ever happened” We know three weeks later she received her second jab allowing her to look forward to spending time with her family and friends again.
Since then well over 50 million doses have been given to people in England and more importantly to our district residents. For those who haven’t yet received either vaccination, it won’t be long! Have patience – your turn will come. AND PLEASE, PLEASE have the vaccine, to keep YOU, your family and Maldon District residents and visitors safe. There’s no catch, and no government conspiracy!
“Last week my wife and I for the first time in over 6 months ventured out a couple of times to dine out locally with friends. It wasn’t easy, but it was great to see people enjoying themselves again and local businesses picking up.
“Please support them wherever you can and take care.”
Councillor Mark S. Heard
Chairman of Maldon District Council