Growing unease over coronavirus peak in Liverpool area


Panic has not yet set in, but there is a growing sense of unease in Greenbank after the service was hit with new coronavirus restrictions. Restrictions in the council quarters of Greenbank and Picton followed a more worrying increase in cases in Princes Park, which saw Liverpool Council introduce localized restrictions.

Residents were told not to meet people from separated households inside and events were canceled.

So far, measures taken at Picton and Greenbank only limit visitors to nursing homes.

It is hoped that local measures will avoid the need for a more onerous foreclosure, but the suggestion that business is moving in the wrong direction is not good news.

“It would be devastating to see independents fall”

Graham Hughes, manager of Watering Can Cafe in Greenbank Park, said the restaurant had taken social distancing measures “very seriously” since being cleared to reopen.

The popular cafe, at the park entrance on Greenbank Road and with an outdoor seating area overlooking the lake, initially opened only on a take-out basis – but recently allowed patrons to enter.

Parc Greenbank

Graham, 29, said groups of older people, at greater risk of serious complications from the disease, gathering in the park had caused him some concern.

He said: “It’s a bit worrying to see groups of older people in the park sitting together and not observing the social distancing measures.

“They are not the only ones, there are groups of mothers with their children and young people too, but the elderly are the most at risk.

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“There are a lot of measures that I don’t think should have been relaxed yet, like reopening the playgrounds because the equipment cannot be cleaned.

“If there was a second lockdown it would be a big blow, not just for us in particular, but for all independents in the region.

“We try to support each other as much as possible with local vendors and stuff, but we’ve seen a lot happening already.

“It would be devastating to see the independent sector that had built up here collapse. “

‘The rules are not clear’

In Penny Lane, freelance hairstylist Lucy Leather, working in the Little Hair Room salon, described how business started to pick up after it reopened on July 6.

Lucy, from Prescot, said: “Because we were independent, we had to switch to universal credit. And since I’ve been self-employed for a little over a year and a half, I will have to pay taxes in January even if I couldn’t work. .

“I was nervous when we got back, not so much about the virus as whether our customers would feel comfortable.

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“Things have worked out well since our return.

“But it’s no surprise that cases have increased again because people are still going out, and the rules are not at all clear.

“I think we should have locked ourselves in earlier. “

“We must learn to live with it”

Brian and Barbara Dutton in Greenbank Park

Retired milkman Brian Dutton and his former wife Barbara, an 80-year-old nursery nurse, said their granddaughter was a GP and had been “very strict” with them about social distancing.

The couple, married for six decades, were enjoying the sunshine in the walled garden of Greenbank Park, which has only reopened to the public in recent days.

Brian told ECHO: “I’m a little worried [about the rise in cases] but we have to learn to live with it.

“My granddaughter is a GP, as is my daughter, so they’ve been really on the front lines.

“They were very strict with us. ”

The council now receives regular and updated coronavirus case data for every part of the city – which helps plan the fight to contain the spread of the virus.


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