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Coronavirus: Much Wenlock continues to adapt well under lockdown restrictions

By Rory Smith | Much Wenlock | News | Published:

Businesses in Much Wenlock are continuing to adapt to life under lockdown, with some reporting a "roaring" trade under their new regime.

Much Wenlock

Despite some being forced to close, many businesses in the town are continuing to operate under new restrictions.

David Turner, who represents the town on Shropshire Council, said the dip in motorists and people on the street has also provided the council with the opportunity to continue essential road resurfacing work, most recently at the Bull Ring, leading down to Priory car park.

Councillor Turner said: "A lot of things have changed for a lot of people, but in many respects things are carrying on as normal.

"There is some road resurfacing work in Much Wenlock, and it's worth bearing in mind as the roads are quieter it's much easier for the council to get on with this work – albeit the workforce has shrunken.

"We still have a lot of council emails coming in, with the focus on measures to deal with coronavirus, but importantly measures for councils to take on delivering the government's reassurances – when they say they can help small businesses, the council works out how to do this."

Councillor Turner added while some traders have been forced to temporarily cease operation, many were busy with takeaway and delivery, and others were running online shops.

"We're delighted to hear businesses such as The Raven and The George and Dragon are doing a roaring trade with takeaway food," Councillor Turner added.

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"Many independent food traders have adapted very well, with some doing deliveries.

"We also have a number of traders that have an online presence as well so although the door is closed they are technically still open – Much More Books is still working hard for example."

Much Wenlock, like many other areas across Shropshire, also has a thriving coronavirus support group.

Councillor David Turner

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Councillor Turner said: "In March a handful of us met to talk about plans for celebrating and commemorating VE Day on May 8.

"We realised very soon we would have to cancel that and we moved our efforts onto Much Wenlock Mutual Aid group.

"There are a lot volunteers getting involved – I'd say twice as many as people as those who are self-isolating and in need of assistance.

"The volunteers collect prescriptions, deliver food, even walk the dog in some circumstances. There's one person who is coordinating all the calls and we've also got an information fact sheet which we update on a frequent basis."

The Covid-19 crisis has affected family and personal life in ways which the general population has not seen since the Second World War, forcing people to adapt their day-to-day living and find ways to fill free time.

Councillor Turner said his garden is now "looking a picture" and his weekly visit to the homemade "Isolation Arms" with friends via video call was a welcome addition to his routine – and one of the few that may surpass the pandemic.

He said: "Obviously it's changed my family life. I meet the guys at the Isolation Arms for a drink once a week – otherwise we'd probably meet at one of the pubs in Much Wenlock.

"I also have two brothers and two sisters and we phoned each other from time to time, but now we all talk at 10.30am on a Sunday morning and I suspect that might continue beyond this crisis which is a nice silver lining.

"Aside from that, the garden is looking a picture. My wife is a keen horticulturalist and the weather has been kind."

Much Wenlock's mutual aid group can be contacted via muchwenlockmutualaid@gmail.com or 07808071276.

Rory Smith

By Rory Smith
Reporter - @rorysmith_star

Senior reporter based at the Shropshire Star's head office in Ketley, Telford.

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