Leaders must do better next time, says Shropshire woman whose parents died during pandemic
A Shropshire woman whose parents both died during the Covid pandemic wants the Government to "know what it is doing" the next time it happens.
An independent public inquiry set up to examine the UK’s response to and impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, and learn lessons for the future, has got under way, chaired by Baroness Heather Hallett, a former Court of Appeal judge.
In Shropshire the memories of loved ones who died during the pandemic still remain raw.
Lynne Beaumont, from Shrewsbury, lived through the agony of not being able to see her father Brian Bass, aged 89, during the final stages of his life in May 2020, just weeks after his 66th wedding anniversary, and could only have 10 people at his funeral.
Mr Bass died in the early hours of Saturday, May 9, 2020 at Royal Shrewsbury Hospital, having suffered from a number of health conditions in his later years and finally falling victim to Covid-19.
Lynne's mother Pat died about two years later, after suffering a stroke, 12 days after coming out of hospital, that she says was caused by her mum's body being weakened by the virus. She had been a volunteer at Royal Shrewsbury Hospital for 33 years and taught people how to sew.
"We have to learn from this because there will be another pandemic," said Lynne.
"During the last week of my father's life I was not allowed to visit him in hospital, and I only lived five minutes round the corner.
"My dad had dementia and I knew what state he was in. He was my best friend and thinking of the distress he was in during the last week of his life, it was so cruel."
Lynne said her dad was a real community man, moving to Shrewsbury with Pat in 1955 and working as a local travel agent.
He was known as "Mr Concorde" for bringing the faster than sound passenger jet to the Shrewsbury Flower Show for the 100th anniversary, in 1987.
"He was a community man, known as Mr Concorde and there were 10 people at his funeral. That was horrendous," she said.