On January 31, 2020 the first two cases of COVID-19 in the UK were confirmed. By early March 2020 things were quickly accelerating when Beth at Townsend Cottage and I met on the Street on a sunny Spring Day. We talked about the growing number of coronavirus cases in the UK and what would happen when the country went into the first “Lockdown”.
Stinchombe Together was started on 16th March 2020 and by the time the Prime Minister announced the lockdown on 23rd March, Beth had designed a “Stinchcombe Together” leaflet, Street Leaders of Beth Taylor, Caroline Marshall, Mandy Delafield, Naomi Heming, Steve and Caroll Ponting and Tracey Legg were in place and we had it distributed the leaflet to all houses in the village.
In all, a total of 41 “Stinchcombe Saints” quickly stepped forward and offered their services to help others. Remember, during that first lockdown, no-one knew how bad COVID-19 would be, how infectious it really was, or really how to live with it. There was also no effective treatments and no-one knew if a vaccine would or could be produced.
That First Lockdown was very strict and the “Street Leaders” were busy collecting prescriptions, shopping and such for residents. Not only that, there were quickly shortages of Flour and essentials like TOILET ROLLS!
The “Stinchcombe Together” WhatsApp group was quickly started to disseminate information from the emergency planning centre at Gloucester and to help in the organisation. However, more and more people wanted to join the WhatsApp Group socially, so we moved to a new WhatsApp group and changed the name of the original group to “Stinchcombe Social”
And that’s how “Stinchcombe Social” was born….
Luckily, after that first Lockdown, we have all, as individuals, families, villages, and as a country come to terms with living with COVID-19. It’s still here, and will be for some years but we feel that the village no longer needs the Stinchcombe Together group as such. Partly because the country is now better prepared but also and more importantly I feel that over the last 12 months the village has in many ways grown closer together. If anyone does need help I feel sure that they will find that their neighbours will help.
So, last week, because of the restrictions being lifted, we decided that this was the time to wind up “Stinchcombe Together”. Therefore, on behalf for the village, THANK YOU to all the “STINCHCOMBE SAINTS” who at a time of community need, stepped forward to help others.
“We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give.”
– Winston Churchill