As we are all now acutely aware, the Covid-19 pandemic continues to gather momentum and is forcing decisions to be made on a daily basis. The shop has thus far reacted in the way prescribed by the Government and everyone has been respectful of the measures put in place. However, in anticipation of the Prime Minister’s letter to all UK households urging everyone to stay in their homes for the foreseeable future, I have taken the decision to close the shop from Tuesday (31st March) until further notice. Initially this will be for two weeks, to see out the compulsory lock-down period. This measure limits any unnecessary movement and contact around our village, thus reducing any chance of infection. During this time, we will move entirely to telephone and email orders with a delivery service.
What this means:
Simply, this will continue to minimise everyone’s risk of exposure to this challenging virus. For those who have already used the delivery service, please keep doing so; it works well. For those who haven’t, here we go! Please do not be afraid to call, even if you just need a pint of milk – there is no minimum order nor delivery charge.
How do I order?
Please telephone 841582 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The intention is to pack and distribute orders the same day, if received by 11.00am.
How will my order arrive?
The Village volunteer scheme will mobilise. When you order, please notify us of your zone (on the village website) and delivery will be organised via a volunteer. They will leave your shopping, ring the bell and step away. All products will be sent in a disinfected milk crate. The volunteer can either allow you time to unpack the crate and then remove it, or leave it with you for future collection. We do, of course, need the crates back for further disinfecting and use.
How do I pay?
1. Transferring a ‘float’ into the village shop account has proved most popular. I can provide bank details by telephone or email. Cheques can be sent in by volunteer.
2. ‘Pay as you shop’, either by bank transfer, cheque or, if absolutely necessary, cash. I am trying to limit contact with cash as far as possible.
3. Don’t worry if none of these methods work. We can settle up when life becomes calmer!
Post Office Services
1. Stamps can be ordered and delivered as above.
2. Letters can be sent in via volunteers and posted in the box.
3. Parcels can be brought to me, via the volunteers, for posting. I need to know how it is to be sent (first, second, special or signed for). Payment can be made as above.
4. If you need cash, please use a trusted contact to help. Cash sent will be ‘clean’, by which I mean it will have sat for a while untouched.
5. Cheques can be banked – I just need the cheque & paying in slip.
Please note that the Post Office is working reduced hours and is under great strain, as deliveries of online orders has spiked. Therefore, there may be delays during this period.
Thank you, and please be patient
I realise that a virtual, rather than physical, shop is an additional inconvenience and discomfort for us all but, under the circumstances, I feel it is the right time to be limiting all unnecessary movement and imposing our own lock-down. Let’s hope it is not for too long.
Boris Johnson’s Letter:
I am writing to you to update you on the steps we are taking to combat coronavirus.
In just a few short weeks, everyday life in this country has changed dramatically. We all feel the profound impact of coronavirus not just on ourselves, but on our loved ones and our communities.
I understand completely the difficulties this disruption has caused to your lives, businesses and jobs. But the action we have taken is absolutely necessary, for one very simple reason.
If too many people become seriously unwell at one time, the NHS will be unable to cope. This will cost lives. We must slow the spread of the disease, and reduce the number of people needing hospital treatment in order to save as many lives as possible.
That is why we are giving one simple instruction – you must stay at home.
You should not meet friends or relatives who do not live in your home.
You may only leave your home for very limited purposes, such as buying food and medicine, exercising once a day and seeking medical attention. You can travel to and from work but should work from home if you can.
When you do have to leave your home, you should ensure, wherever possible, that you are two metres apart from anyone outside of your household.
These rules must be observed. So, if people break the rules, the police will issue fines and disperse gatherings.
I know many of you will be deeply worried about the financial impact on you and your family. The Government will do whatever it takes to help you make ends meet and put food on the table.
The enclosed leaflet sets out more detail about the support available and the rules you need to follow. You can also find the latest advice at gov.uk/coronavirus
From the start, we have sought to put in the right measures at the right time. We will not hesitate to go further if that is what the scientific and medical advice tells us we must do.
It’s important for me to level with you – we know things will get worse before they get better. But we are making the right preparations, and the more we all follow the rules, the fewer lives will be lost and the sooner life can return to normal.
I want to thank everyone who is working flat out to beat the virus, in particular the staff in our fantastic NHS and care sector across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. It has been truly inspirational to see our doctors, nurses and other carers rise magnificently to the needs of the hour.
Thousands of retired doctors and nurses are returning to the NHS – and hundreds of thousands of citizens are volunteering to help the most vulnerable. It is with that great British spirit that we will beat coronavirus and we will beat it together.
That is why, at this moment of national emergency, I urge you, please, to stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives.