A year on from the first lockdown… Flora Scott Brown23rd March 2021
It’s been one year since the start of the first COVID-19 lockdown and to mark this anniversary we have asked a few of our Barhale people to take a look back and tell us about their experiences. Over the coming weeks we plan to share with you their reflections of the last twelve months, a time which has been a challenge for many.
What has the last year been like for you?
The last year has been strange. I feel fortunate to have been minimally impacted by the pandemic on the whole, but there are days that seem very surreal when thinking about how long it’s been since things were “normal” and it was possible to see friends and family.
What have you found the most difficult?
I think at the start of lockdown number three in January, it was becoming gradually more difficult to stay optimistic, due to the uncertainty around how long it would last combined with such a gloomy time of year.
However, as the days get lighter and with the positive news about vaccines I am definitely looking forward to making plans for later in the year.
What has the last year taught you and what changes do you plan to keep in place long after COVID-19?
This last year has definitely shown me how much I value social interaction! It has really hit home that spending time with family and friends is crucial to a healthy balance in life.
What have you missed most?
I have definitely missed having the freedom to travel, and not so much going on holiday abroad but more so spending weekends within the UK, seeing new places and visiting those that I know and love.
How well do you think Barhale responded to COVID-19?
After the first lockdown I returned to the office on a part-time basis, with our fairly small team split into a rota to minimise contact. For me this was so important to maintain motivation and a healthy attitude to work, so I really appreciated the fact that the office in Walsall felt safe, with a one-way system, lots of cleaning and reduced numbers.
Throughout the past year there has been a very open and sensible approach to returning to the office. When restrictions have been eased, we have been able to do so safely if needed, but there have also been open discussions regarding the appropriateness given the national situation at any given time.
While I’m office based, I have definitely felt a sense of pride knowing that many in the company have continued to work throughout all of the challenging conditions and lockdowns this past year.
And lastly, what is the first thing you are going to do when this is all over?
The first thing I’m planning to do when things are back to normal is see my friends – whether that be travelling to stay with those further afield or just making plans with those closer to home.