As ringers we meet and enjoy our pastime mostly in close proximity with each other. I’m sure many of us are therefore concerned about the current Coronavirus situation. It has been suggested from various quarters that we ought to give our members some advice. However of course we are not at all experts in this area. But in the interests of providing as much information as possible to our members, below are listed some links you may wish to explore to obtain advice.
It would seem obvious, but some points suggested to me by one of our members that we ought to consider specific to our particular activity are:
- Being elderly or having underlying health issues are two major factors that most clearly define whether people might be considered at risk of not recovering from this virus infection.
- Many of our ringers could be classified as belonging to one or both of those groups.
- In the ringing chamber we all handle the same ropes and are in close proximity to one another.
- The advice on helping to reduce the chance of infection that we hear most often is to wash our hands thoroughly more frequently.
- Washing our hands before and after practices and service ringing can help to avoid importing the infection into and exporting it from the ringing room.
- Some churches have facilities that make this hand washing on the premises easy and you might consider insisting upon all your ringers using them
- If the church doesn’t enjoy these benefits hand sanitiser (at the moment almost unobtainable) is a substitute for thorough washing, otherwise washing before leaving home and avoiding contact with surfaces that others touch should be encouraged
- Wiping down door handles or other surfaces that are touched by many people before a practice begins is a sensible precaution.
Other things we ought to consider are:
- If you have recently travelled abroad or otherwise possibly been in contact with the virus it may be worth considering avoiding close contact with others for a couple of weeks.
- If you feel at all unwell with cold or flu symptoms again consider staying away from close proximity with others and seek advise in the prescribed manner advised by the NHS.
What we shouldn’t do is panic but take sensible precautions and keep abreast of the advice issued by Government and the NHS. To aid you with this here are some links: