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Coronavirus: Shropshire people stepping up to provide help

By Rob Smith | Telford | Coronavirus | Published:

Individuals and organisations around the region have leapt to the assistance of people in need. Here are just a few:

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A group of volunteers in Much Wenlock is offering practical support including help with shopping, delivering meals or simply talking on the phone.

Reverend Matthew Stafford of the Wenlock Ministry said: "Much Wenlock Mutual Aid is gathering names of people who are prepared to offer practical support to those who may have to self isolate.

"Please send your contact details to: wenlockrectory@btinternet.com

"Holy Trinity [parish church] is GDPR-compliant and will only use your data for this purpose."

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North Shropshire MP Owen Paterson is calling for more volunteers to help during the crisis.

Mr Paterson has published a form for people who want to get involved can complete. He says he will then pass the details onto local organisations looking for volunteers.

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"Coronavirus represents a very significant public health challenge that requires all of us as a community to pull together," he said.

"I am working as the MP with a range of local community organisations to try and make sure we work together effectively."

He stressed the details would not be used for any other reason.

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The Holy Trinity church in Buildwas is coordinating residents' shopping and offering to fetch prescriptions and post letters.

Nigel Bowen said: "Are you self-isolating? Do you need a helping hand? If so, Buildwas Church are offering help to local residents with grocery shopping – we can fetch for you or order online.

"If there's anything else we can do for you, such as fetch a prescription or newspaper, post a letter, or if you need emotional or spiritual support, or you think someone may need help, then please let us know.

"Call 01952 432497 or message us via our Facebook page: facebook.com/buildwaschurch."

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A village Facebook community has gathered dozens of volunteers including teachers, ambulance volunteers and a police officer, ready to help those who need things delivered or dogs walked.

Jo Marsh of Bayston Hill, near Shrewsbury, set up the Bayston Hill Community page last weekend and villagers have responded in force.

She said: "Already, we have over 60 volunteers ready to collect/deliver essentials, walk dogs and/or offer phone calls to those who are self-isolating.

"With almost 500 people in total engaged with the group we have the capacity to effect real change here in Bayston Hill.

"We have now also linked up to the local shops and churches to provide delivery services and pastoral care.

"Within our volunteers we have several teachers, two members of St John Ambulance (one is me) and even a serving police officer.

"We are taking GDPR and safe-guarding very seriously and will be taking careful steps to ensure no one is able to take advantage of our vulnerable residents."

Contact the group on hellobayston@protonmail.com or visit facebook.com/BaystonHillCommunity/

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"We are not closed for business," is the firm message from the Wrockwardine Deanery, who will continue to offer spiritual guidance despite group worship being suspended.

The deanery covers Buildwas, Crudgington, Eaton Constantine, High Ercall, Leighton, Longdon-on-Tern, Rodington, Rowton, Uffington, Uppington, Upton Magna, Withington, and Wrockwardine.

Reverend Chris Tough said: "In light of the Government guidance around non-essential contact, the Archbishops of Canterbury and York have issued advice that public worship is currently suspended until further notice, though funerals and weddings can still go ahead.

"However, most of our churches are currently open 9am to 5pm every day for individual prayer and worship. If you require any spiritual guidance in these difficult times, please contact a local member of clergy.

"For more information, please visit our deanery website. if you are not in our deanery, you can find a church near you on the website here: www.achurchnearyou.com"

Contact Mrs Tough on 01952 510530 or Reverend Andy Ackroyd on 01952 252078. Alternatively, visit www.wrockwardinedeanery.org.uk or email nigelbowen@outlook.com

Rob Smith

By Rob Smith
Reporter

Senior reporter for the Shropshire Star based at Ketley in Telford.

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