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  • Writer's pictureClare Barker

2020 – The Good, the Bad and the Hope

This past year has given us many reasons to reflect on the extraordinary conditions with which we have had to live. As we enter the New Year, much of the country is now in Tier 4 with the remainder in Tier 3 and the affects and dangers of Covid-19 continue to be with us. Despite all the challenges, worries and sadness we have coped with, there also have been many reasons to celebrate the achievements of so many.

The Good

This year we have, of course, seen the best in people with many bravely putting themselves in harms way to help others, the NHS leading this sacrifice. There have been those raising money for charity, many taking the time to help the vulnerable and countless others changing our environment to make it as safe as possible.

Perhaps an unexpected benefit of lockdown throughout the world was how nature can recover from the impact of our way of life. In Venice people saw fish for the first time in the canals and in Delhi the lockdown caused a rare and wonderful sight; a pure blue sky.

We noticed this Christmas that so many shoppers chose to shop locally and with independent retailers. Our local stockists such as Two Rivers Refill in Christchurch, Hermitage Beauty Salon in the New Forest and The Letterbox in Westbourne were busy reordering from us right up to Christmas. Stockists attending fairs and markets such as Miggles20 saw brisk business and the fairs we attended were also the most successful we have ever seen.

Christmas was capped off for us with virtually all the presents we both sent and received being in recycled paper and with, notably, non-plastic and bio-degradable Sellotape. Such a great innovation for the planet!

The Bad

Needless to say, the devastating affect of Covid-19 has brought so much sadness to many families and long-lasting heath implications too for some. We have had to learn how to live with masks, keeping our distance from each other, not being able to hug our loved ones, limited visits with family at Christmas and many businesses being shut or very limited. Many businesses have had it tough, some not survived, and the economic fallout of lockdown may yet hit us hard again.

The Hope

However, we end the year with the remarkable and exciting news of another vaccine, this time a British success from Oxford AstraZeneca. Together with the other vaccines, this gives us some light at the end of the tunnel and may yet see us approach some normality next year. With a surprise last minute Brexit deal and continued low interest rates the economy may yet be robust enough to help us continue to do successful business.

Come what may, the circumstances of Covid-19 and lockdown have also given us all time to rethink our day-to-day world and how we treat it. Working from home has suddenly become the accepted way to do business and this, we trust, will bring much needed relief to both the environment and our mental wellbeing.

We wish you all a Safe, Happy and Successful New Year!

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