Tuesday 23 March marks the anniversary of the country’s first COVID lockdown and offers us all an opportunity to reflect on what has been a year possibly like no other.
On this day last year, when the Prime Minister announced the stay at home order and the country began its first national lockdown, nobody could have foreseen what lay ahead. Since that day there have been significant changes to how we live and work and also how the council and its key partners locally have supported the borough’s most vulnerable residents.
Today has been announced as a day of national reflection to remember those who have lost their lives to COVID. Across Walsall, over 900 lives have been lost, with families being unable to be with their loved ones at such a sensitive time or indeed able to organise funerals in a way to properly pay tribute. Thousands of families across the borough of Walsall are grieving.
The national day of reflection remembers those who have lost their lives and will include a minute’s silence at 12pm followed by bell tolls across the land and people are being encouraged by the Marie Curie charity to stand on their doorsteps at 8pm, with a candle, a torch, or even a phone, to signify a beacon of remembrance.
Walsall’s Director of Public Health, Stephen Gunther, said:
“I will be privately observing the minute’s silence at noon and reflecting quietly on the thousands of lives that have irrevocably changed across Walsall as a result of the pandemic. My thoughts are with them all.
“Whether you’re bereaved or otherwise need support, it is available. A series of free online talks organised by the Good Grief Festival is taking place, featuring experts, bereaved families and celebrities. There is also the option to speak to someone locally via Making Connections Walsall.
“While today is a time to reflect on COVID bereavements, it’s perhaps also appropriate to reflect on the incomparable voluntary and community sector in this borough for stepping up to connect people to friendly local voices.”
Note to Editor