Covid-19 Lockdown – end of Month 3

We are preparing for bookings after 4th July, with PPE, hand gel and safety measures

Overview of the last month

Government ignore the warnings. That could be the title for the whole Covid-19 mess

A busy month

During the last month, we have seen many changes. Government ignore the warnings and press on with easements on lockdown. Measures included permission to travel and meet in small groups. Some shielded persons may now venture outside. We anticipate re-opening on July 4th. Although this may change again, depending on UK.Gov restrictions.

Crowded beaches after the Cummings affair and Government ignore the warnings
Beaches were crowded after the Cummings affair
(Photo taken from the relative safety of the Esplanade!)

Preparing to re-open

We have tentatively re-opened our booking diary from 4th July. Some PPE has been ordered and received (facemasks, gloves, gowns, bootees, sanitizer). We await guidelines SPECIFIC to small hotels, guesthouses and b&b’s. Meanwhile, we are trying to follow lengthy and detailed guidelines from UK Hospitality Association.

Your author, has undertaken (and passed) two basic Covid-19 online courses from WHO. These concerned correct use of PPE and control of pandemic outbreaks, including Covid-19.

Government mired in controversy

We do not intend to dwell too much on the “Demonic” Cummings affair. His betrayal of the British People and arrogantly issued web of blatant lies must go down in History as something akin to Benedict Arnold, Judas Iscariot or maybe Pol Pot, before he took over completely. UK Government has lost respect and trust in supporting this treacherous weasel. (No insult intended to weasels!) Again, Government ignore the warnings. Maybe enough survivors will remain to vote out the incompetents who steered us into personal and financial tragedy on a mass scale.

Cummings and Government ignore the warnings
Blind or stupid. Certainly arrogant.

The results may have been evident in the displays of thoughtless, careless and senseless crowds in the good weather of the following weekend. Basically, many folk started to believe the rules did not apply to them and we fervently hope a second wave is not the consequence.

Lack of trust in UK Government

Many questions remain, by NHS, Scientists, fellow MP’s and Head of UK Statistics, as to:

  • Why “quarantine” visitors now instead of months ago?
  • Should’nt “Test, track and trace” have started BEFORE the numbers grew?
  • Abroad, trace methods include phone tracking, surveillance camera data, credit card data, etc – why not here?
  • Are there “invalid” numbers of deaths – and test data for that matter?
  • After seeing the examples set by South Korea, Vietnam, Australia and others, why did UK Government ignore the warnings and delay for over a month before taking (the wrong!) actions?
  • Seeing Turkey take very prompt actions, including SENDING test personnel out to suspected victims AND providing results AND contact tracking data WITHIN 24 hours, why cannot the UK do that?
  • Why did UK Government ignore the warnings about pandemics in the reports from 2007, 2011 and Cygnus Report of 2016 – all of which highlighted lack of preparedness, lack of PPE, lack of respirators and vulnerability in Care Homes? They commissioned and paid for these reports!

We try to avoid politics in our blogs but, in this case, many lives are at risk and a floppy-haired child of four could have done better (with a “trusted” Chief Aide, of course!) That is our opinion.

Quarantine for inbound travellers

Well, it’s not a quarantine is it? Quarantine is corralling suspected cases together, while track and trace goes on. Politely asking travellers to self-isolate for 14 days serves no purpose except to continue to cripple the Tourism industry. For reference, the Tourism Sector is the third largest in the UK. (Worth about £127Billion a year, or 8 times as much as TV, Radio and Films together!)

BAME – Groups at special risk from Covid-19

Along with elderly males and those with certain pre-existing conditions, BAME groups appear to be at greater risk from infection and severity. (BAME = Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic groups).

Worldwide data for Covid-19 deaths, as of 4th May 2020. Deaths per million Population

EU Nations“A”“B”
Belgium 834Philippines 9Dominican Republic 49
UK 598Pakistan 8Honduras 24
Spain 581Afghanistan 8Algeria 16
Italy 556Japan 7South Africa 14
Sweden 446Indonesia 6Egypt 11
France 433South Korea 5Gabon 9
Netherlands 347Bangladesh 5Equitorial Guinea 9
Interestingly, the lowest death rates are for central African countries
although things may change in future data sets.

China, where it all began, has a death rate of 3.3 while India has 4.5. Nations such as Nigeria, Chad, Congo, Cite d’Ivoire, Somalia (etc) are typically below 2.0 death rates so far. Despite highly effective and prompt measures to combat spread and track cases, Turkey has a death rate around 56. The higher susceptibility to infection and death seems to be local to European countries, as yet.


1. NOT “following the science”

WHO study finds 1 metre is adequate for social distancing. Blindly sticking to 2 metres threatens £137Billion hospitality sector AND 1million jobs.

2. “Doing the wrong thing at the wrong time”

Labour Shadow Home Secretary claims “only 273 people were quarantined during the pandemic period”. However 18 million travellers were allowed in. No wonder the disease spread so fast and killed so many people.

3. Top Italian scientists claim the virus is losing potency

If true, this would explain the fast peak in deaths, followed by a long slow decline in numbers. It also implies all the UK measures were a complete waste of time.

4. “Test, Track and Trace” not going to be useful

WHO studies have shown that asymptomatic cases are not as infectious as first thought. This means test, track and trace needs to focus on the 2 or so days when symptoms show. However, results MUST be much, much faster to be effective (10 minutes approx in many countries!) Also, the programme is at least 3 months too late. UK still does not have enough testing capacity either. (Government ignore the warnings!)

5. Lockdown may have been a waste of time

The UK lockdown was not effective, too late and has cost the economy over £300Billion (and counting!) By contrast, Sweden has had no lockdown and only about 1/8th as many deaths. However, the Swedish economy has hardly been impacted. Unlike ours.

6. Nightingale Hospitals – a white elephant?

NHS London Nightingale Hospital opened on 3rd April, over 2 months after the first Covid-19 case in the UK. As of 4th May it stands empty. Five of the other 6 such hospitals are now open. Meanwhile, in China, the 1000-bed Huoshenshan Hospital opened in Hubei Province on 1st February. It took just 10 days to build and is totally “state-of-the-art”. Nurses can mostly tend patients remotely, minimising carer exposure. The 1600-bed Leishenshan Hospital opened on 8th February. (Engineering and Technology, March 2020, 92-93). Even the Gaza Strip has a large field hospital for Covid-19 patients.

Covid-19 Easing Lockdown – end of week 7/8

Home truths and easing lockdown

It looks like the “tail” of the pandemic plan and easing lockdown is going to be a long. drawn-out affair. We have switched to less frequent blog updates. This update covers a fortnight. The next will cover a month. Meanwhile, we are all hoping for a return to summery scenes before too long.

Easing lockdown in the pandemic plan might just possibly allow for beach motocross event in october
Maybe we can hope to see the Beach Motocross in October

Self isolating and staying at home

At home, we are still self-isolating as much as possible, collective shopping and waving to neighbours from a safe distance. About once a fortnight, we take waste plastic bottles and cans to the recycling bins about 300 yards away. This is simply to prevent blocking of our fire exit. The neighbourhood online quizzes have stopped briefly, while we pause to think of new tricky questions.

WHO online training courses for Covid-19

Recovery – easing lockdown

We are also pondering the weekend (week 7) announcements about slight easing of lockdown, with a degree of trepidation. Uncertainty remains about exactly how our business would cope with working under the present pandemic plan. We have re-opened bookings for January 2021 but will probably not serve breakfasts. This would be to protect guests via maintained social distancing.

Seafood Festival
Seafood Festival – maybe back in 2021

Problems facing the Tourism Industry

There is an excellent and rather comprehensive article online in “The House”, which outlines current problems facing the hospitality industry. At risk is the £127 Billion-a-year UK Tourism industry and the livelihoods of 3,1 million workers in 300,000 businesses. These figures include 8% of the Nation’s workforce and the third largest industry sector in Britain.

The article suggests the impact of the Covid-19 emergency and lockdown is equivalent to three consecutive winter seasons. Certainly, in our case, we lose an average of £3,000 – £4000 per month in winter because of fixed costs. It takes us till mid-July to start to break even – and that is not going to be possible this year. Many colleague businesses are in far worse shape than us.

Aaran House frontage
Aaran House frontage

Gaps in Government help for Tourism businesses

The report goes on to highlight dependent businesses, such as Tourism Travel companies and booking agents. Such groups do not receive any Government support presently. Further, the many suppliers, delivery drivers, repair firms and specialist infrastructure firms are also at financial risk and facing very uncertain futures. The Tourism landscape is going to be pretty bleak for a long time after Covid-19 has been and gone.

(Below is a quasi-political section which readers can skip if they wish – at least it’s not our usual “science-y” section! It includes a brief description that shows British planning was years ahead of other Nations. BUT our complacency and austerity tripped us up when action was actually needed.)