Photographs show a very quiet B1172 and also plenty of trees and fields. we were passed by four buses - all of them empty. Surely it's time to think again about the current timetables.
Here are the photographs of today's walk. Went along the B1172 and down the cycle/walking path that runs behind Kett's Oak. Turned right and walked across fields and onto Great Melton, down Hethersett Road and New Road to get back home.
Photographs show a very quiet B1172 and also plenty of trees and fields. we were passed by four buses - all of them empty. Surely it's time to think again about the current timetables.
You will probably have realised by now if you read this blog that I like to write an early morning entry. Today I got up with that intention and found I had little or nothing to write about - just another day in lockdown.
Then I opened Facebook and ideas started to flow. So here are the first ramblings of ADIL (another day in lockdown). Firstly a post on Facebook from a very high ranking retired police officer attacking the Government for cuts in policing. This is something that resonated with me as I worked for the police for many years and had the pleasure of working with this man.
Here is what he had to say and I really don't think this needs any comment:
"Everyone in the UK should see channel 4's 999 What's your emergency from tonight. The absolute truth about the consequences of the cuts to our police service. Too few officers and those we have diverted into social welfare and the fight against crime given up. I can't express my admiration for the officers of today, a thankless task with little public appreciation. They are doing their absolute best, its the politicians who have robbed them of resources and diverted them from core business that are to blame. Yes, I clap the NHS , but let us not forget that our police service is still on the front line facing the scum of the earth who spit in their face. They deserve a clap too."
Then there was a piece on Facebook asking for "cures" for a cold from the past and it made me think of my grandmother - Selina Maud Dew. She "swore by" (that means loved or recommended and not shouting expletives) what she called butter, sugar pills. I have never found another human being who was subjected to them. To be honest they weren't that bad. My grandmother would take a knob of butter and roll it in vinegar and then coat it with sugar. Obviously it was designed to do little more than cut through a sore throat for while.
Now off for my daily Gove Gander. It's a bright day so I should get some decent photos which I will post this afternoon.
Finally many thanks for all the kind messages regarding this blog. Since I started writing about ADIL I have received over 500 likes for articles posted on Facebook along with some lovely comments. Just makes me want to write more and take even more photographs (oh no I hear some of you say).
As promised in my previous blog here are the pictures form today's walk. Not the best but they might give some idea of the isolation we are currently under.
The walk was into the fields across the B1172 from New Road and then round the back of Park Farm and along the B1172 - about three miles. Also took a couple of the B1172 to illustrate how quiet it is and also New Road. There are also a couple of my own garden - somewhere I should imagine I will be spending some time in when the weather warms up a bit.
To go out or not to go out that is the question?
It's one I have been thinking about after receiving a message on Facebook following my previous blog.
Each time I put a blog online I get a raft of thank you messages and likes and I really appreciate these. In fact 99% of comments on what I am doing are positive. Today I received an interesting one suggesting that if we all have total lockdown and don't go out at all, this crisis will be over much faster.
Whilst agreeing largely with this idea, at the present time the Government have said that one form of exercise each day is permissible providing we keep to the social distancing criteria. I largely keep my walks to fields and the immediate countryside around Hethersett and closely follow the two metre guidance. If and when the Government impose a complete lockdown apart from going out to buy provisions I will of course abide by it.
In the meantime as a journalist I see my role as bringing people news about the latest position and what is happening in Hethersett. This will be reflected both in my daily blogs and in my e-magazine Hethersett Herald at www.hethersettherald.weebly.com
I have been very heartened by the comments and appreciation both of this blog and the photographs I have been taking and I am delighted to continue to do this within the confines of the safety measures imposed by the Government. Getting out for many people for a walk, run or cycle ride is vitally important for their mental health and well being and we should never overlook this. We need to ensure that everyone remains mentally as well as physically strong during these very difficult and demanding days.
Have just finished my Gove Gander for the day. Went for a three mile walk round the fields at the back of Park Farm and back along the B1172 which was very quiet. We were passed by an empty number 14 bus. Admittedly not the greatest walk - vast open swathes of open country. When we started the walk it was sunny but after a few minutes it clouded over and the pictures became moody rather than colourful. I will post them on this blog in a short while once I have sorted out the wheat from the chaff.
Thought I would pass on these words of advice which seem to sum up our present position and why we need to keep distancing. This was posted on Facebook by Vic Redington who many people will remember in the village. Vic was Head of Old Hall School for many years and now lives in Suffolk. I am sure this one is doing the rounds.
"People need to realise that case numbers are going to keep going up for the next 10 days in spite of the lockdown, because of spread that has already happened. We need to guard against people starting to think the lockdown is not working while this happens. It takes at least a week for lockdown to start reducing the rate of rise."
Manchester United and England footballer Marcus Rashford is doing his bit during the crisis by ensuring children in Manchester get plenty of food. It sound as if he had a difficult time as a child and is now using his past to improve the lot of local children. So big praise for that. I had to laugh at one of his comments though. He is spending a lot of time "reading books on mentality" but said: "I didn't realise how much knowledge there is in books until I started reading them." I suppose dear old Marcus thought all knowledge came from the Internet.
Shortly I will be setting off for my daily Gove Gander - this time across the fields of Hethersett in the direction of Wymondham. Will post some photos when I return.
Other than that I have a decision to make about the rest of the day. Do I paint the entrance lobby or tidy up the study? Decisions decisions.
Thought I would do a non coronavirus post to end the day.
Just sat through 17 minutes of Bob Dylan's latest epic Murder Most Foul - a very strange piece of music - if music is what you would call it. Poetry, musings, ramblings. Little or no melody but that's what we have come to expect. So listening to 17 minutes of the same musical phrasing is somewhat difficult although the background pseudo classical music is quite interesting. No it's all about the lyrics - at times almost a stream of consciousness wrapped around the Kennedy assassination but mentioning as many musical and literary icons as Dylan can cram into 17 minutes.
At times it reminded me of American Pie without the melody, at others it reminded me of the work of a man with plenty on his mind and who is determined to insist on us hearing it all - that's if you can be bothered to spare the time. And I'm not sure I could invest another 17 minutes on it.
So now I'm revisiting Selling England By The Pound by Genesis which seems to be much more fun.
IT'S becoming more and more likely that the current lockdown situation will go on for months rather than weeks.
It's going to be hugely tough, particularly for the elderly and those with young children who don't understand why they can't go out and play with friends.
Managed to get the latest Hethersett Herald out this morning (a couple of days later than I had hoped but things just kept changing). It ended up as another bumper issue with plenty of features, news and photographs. I hope everyone enjoys reading it and hopefully feel that it is an important part of Hethersett life.
Almost immediately the edition came out I received a wonderful message. I don't want to identify the sender through a fear of embarrassing him. Let's just say it's someone who knows what they are talking about when it comes to publications. He referred to the Herald as a "triumph." Comments like this really do make everything worthwhile.
I publish Herald each month for four main reasons:
1/ To keep people informed about what is happening in Hethersett.
2/ To (hopefully) entertain
3/ To help me feel that I am making a reasonable contribution to the local community and
4/ To give an outlet to my love of writing.
I am hugely grateful to the increasing number of people contributing to the publication. In this edition we have some stunning photographs that I hope everyone will enjoy.
When I started the Herald I had no idea that it would take off as it has but it is a privilege to be able to bring news and features to you every month.
One of the reasons I delayed publication this month was to include two additional pieces that were only received yesterday. The first was information from South Norfolk about isolation and the virus and the other was news that work on the cyclepath between Hethersett and Wymondham has been suspended. At last we have found a way of getting some respite from those dreadful temporary traffic lights on the B1172. Unfortunately it has taken a pandemic to get them removed. It's a huge irony that the very people who wanted rid of the lights will probably be looking forward to them returning simply because that will be an indication that things are returning to normal (whatever that is).
With this isolation thing seemingly endless I can't help feeling that the best part of the year is likely to be stolen from us. We are used to people saying "that's two hours of my life I'll never get back" when they attend something they haven't enjoyed. I wonder if by the end of all of this we will be saying "that's four months of my life I'll never get back again."
I was listening to Radio Two this morning. I always enjoy the Michael Ball show. Today Richard Madeley was standing in as Mr Ball was in isolation. Madeley said that for him the worst thing about the current restrictions were not being able to see family and in particular his three grandchildren. I certainly echo those sentiments.
One of the things we have started in the Herald is a monthly look at petrol prices, comparing prices of garages within a five or six mile radius of Hethersett. At the time of making the comparison the cheapest around in that radius was about 114.7p a litre. When I checked a short while ago petrol at Earlham Fiveways was down to 102.9p. This would suggest that not much fuel is being bought. I suspect once the emergency is over the prices will soon climb back again.
One of the things I'm trying to point out with this service is the ridiculously high price of fuel at our three closest garages - Abbeygate and Waitrose in Wymondham and Thickthorn Services. We deserve better than being forced to pay top book prices for our petrol and diesel.
I have to say the virus situation is now becoming slightly frightening as the death toll continues to rise and it looks as if it is going to get worse before it gets better.
The medical profession and the politicians certainly seem to have got things right in their assessment of the situation. Many will argue that we should have gone to total lockdown much earlier. The problem was that people would have ignored that and accused the powers that be of scaremongering. Now I think most people accept the enormity of the situation and are being responsible.
There are very few things in Hethersett functioning. I understand the queues for prescriptions from the chemists are still very long and the wait can be over an hour. This is quite difficult to understand as somebody pointed out on Facebook. In normal times there are never more than two or three people waiting for prescriptions at any one time. So why now is there a queue that snakes down Great Melton Road?
Tesco Express is limiting the number of customers allowed into the store to seven, which seems very sensible. I understand that the Sunrise Chinese takeaway is still open but is strictly limiting numbers being admitted at any one time.
It already seems that this virus "lockdown" has been going on forever. But we are only in day six of the restrictive measures. There will obviously be a minimum of 21 days and it could last for as long as 84 days. One thing that is certain is we will remember this for a long time to come.
The clocks go forward tonight but it scarcely seems to matter. As somebody said it just means an hour less time in the lounge!!
Went for a very short Gove Gander today - just round the block and back. It wouldn't surprise me if further restrictions were applied to stop people going out for recreational runs/walks/bike rides. If that's what it takes then so be it. At least then we will know how it feels to be under house arrest!
Have held up the publication of Hethersett Herald for a few hours to be able to include a message from South Norfolk about the latest situation. It will now be out tomorrow morning.
It was a lovely moment last night at 8 pm as so many Hethersett people stood outside for a community round of applause in support of the NHS and everyone else that is keeping the country running. I must admit that I stopped clapping in order to hear what was going on.
Had to venture into the village today to do some essential shopping. Seven people at a time are allowed into the Tesco Express store whilst others wait outside at a safe distance. It was all very organised and orderly as if everyone is now getting used to the restrictions.
On the way we dropped off parish council newsletters to three roads in Hethersett. The letters outline help numbers for the Early Help Team at South Norfolk Council. These numbers are for people to contact who need help with such things as shopping, collection of prescription or who would simply like to chat because they are lonely.
The team is available by telephone on 01508 533933 from 8.15 am until 5 pm or on 0800 389 6109 out of hours or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. There's also information online at
It was quite difficult putting slips of paper through letterboxes whilst wearing thick winter gloves - not to mention how hot and sweaty my hands became. Numerous people immediately came forward to distribute these information sheets when the printers pulled out of the work. Yet another example of our wonderful community coming together in a crisis.
Andre Smith has closed the Hethersett Community Store now that the South Norfolk hub has been set up. In the 17 days the store was in action, Andre and his family delivered over £2,500 of goods to numerous households from 7 in the morning until 10 at night. The village owes them a debt of gratitude
More acts of kindness have come to light as well. One resident seeing a lengthy queue at the chemists, took out three garden chairs for the less able to sit on while they waited. How good was that?
Now that the Prime Minister has tested positive for the virus, I feel I can no longer refer to my daily exercise as a Boris Walk. From tomorrow it will become a Gove Gander.
At 8 pm tonight as many of us as possible will be out on our porches to give a hearty round of applause for the work the NHS is doing in these most trying of times.
It's only a token gesture, but it is one way we can support them with our thoughts and prayers.
Elsewhere the parish council is in a difficult position. It has put together a leaflet containing contact numbers for the more vulnerable people in our community. The leaflets have been printed but the distribution company has stopped functioning and so the council is looking for volunteers to distribute them. Apparently numerous people have already come forward. Just another example of how wonderful our community is when faced with adversity.
Tesco Express has upped its restrictions and only allowing seven people in the store at any one time. Another sensible precaution.
This morning did a six mile Boris Walk across the fields to Great Melton, on to Little Melton and back to Hethersett. The weather was glorious, Will post some photos in my next blog.
The following lyrics from Paul Simon's I Am A Rock seem most appropriate at the moment. Thanks to my good friend John Head for pointing them out:
I have my books
And my poetry to protect me
I am shielded in my armour
Hiding in my room, safe within my womb
I touch no one and no one touches me
I am a rock
I am an island
You can hear the song at
More closure news today: The parish church is now shut and locked as is the children's playground on the Memorial Playing Field. The playing field itself is still open for "sensible exercise" within the Government's directives.
Yesterday I posted a photograph taken in the village of a very attractive grass verge which has a resplendent display of daffodils. The are was planted by Kathee Waterhouse who contacted me to suggest other people might like to brighten our lives up by planting flowers on their verges. Seems like a great idea to me.
Now off for my Boris Walk - this time across the fields to Great Melton.
Walking around the fields of Hethersett will now forever be known as a Boris Walk - just one a day in order to stay within Government rules of course.
Never say there isn't variety in our life though. Yesterday we did it anti-clockwise and today we did it clockwise. It felt a lot warmer than the 13 degrees we saw on the thermometer. I think for our Boris walk tomorrow we might go the opposite way to Great Melton - oh the fun and joy.
Noticed that the parish church is now officially shut and locked up. Managed to take plenty of pictures including a few of sheep in the fields with everything looking resplendent in the sunshine apart from the usual evidence of litter strewn along the ditches and also the verges of Ketteringham Lane. Presumably the rubbish was thrown from a car!
We all like to fantasise at times. It's just now with the virus we have to lower our sights a little. But I have found my fantasies now cover two days.
Day One - Walk to the centre of Hethersett. Pick up some milk and cakes from Tesco Express without having to queue to get in, pop into the library and read the paper and take out a couple of novels, have coffee/lunch at one of our excellent cafes and then a slow wander home checking on what's happening at the King's Head (nothing).
Day Two - Take a bus into Norwich, pop into the Forum to view their latest exhibition and have a read in the library, mushy peas at Reggie's stall on Norwich Market followed by chips from Lucy's. Afternoon coffee at Virgin Lounge, a film at Cinema City and a slice or two of pizza at Saporita and then home.
Sadly for the time being those two days will just remain fantasies. Only decision to make today is what time I go out for my daily BoJo exercise walk!
Just been out for my one Government allowed walk - now confined to barracks for the rest of the day.
Went down Ketteringham Lane and round the back of the fields. There was a ditch with lovely wild primroses growing on the bank and old bottles and cans in the bottom!!!!
Hethersett looked good in the sunshine but I forgot to take my camera. Will repeat the walk tomorrow and take photos. The amount of traffic on the B1172 was much lower than usual but plenty of work vans. We were passed by two buses. A double decker had two people on it (one on the bottom and one on the top - obviously observing the Government's two metre rule). The other a single decker was empty. Difficult to see how public transport can go on much longer with lack of numbers. It really is a Catch 22 situation. Without passengers public transport will stop but we are all being told to avoid using it.
It's a similar situation as with pubs, clubs and restaurants from a number of days ago. Couldn't help thinking on the walk how lucky we are to have television and the Internet to keep us abreast of what's happening and to entertain us. One hundred years ago we wouldn't have had this, but then again 100 years ago we would have no or little idea that there was a pandemic anyway!