Like all of you, I was so disappointed when I learned that Leicester and some of its surrounding areas are to endure an extended period of lockdown whilst the rest of the country enjoys an easing of restrictions. You have all shown admirable resilience over the last 3 months despite being separated from family, friends, and colleagues and my condolences to those grieving for loved ones taken cruelly and prematurely by this terrible virus. I’m sure this extension was the last thing you wanted.
As Her Majesty’s representative, I’d like to thank all our NHS staff, emergency services, care homes, retail staff, delivery teams, refuse collectors, postal workers, Armed Forces, charities, volunteers and the untold army of people who have used the unexpected spare time they got to help their fellow citizens. You have been magnificent: every day I learn of sacrifices the people of Leicester and Leicestershire are making to ensure that those who are most vulnerable get the help they need regardless of age, colour, religion or gender. But whilst the extension of the lockdown locally means we need to keep going a little longer, the words spoken by Her Majesty in her public address on 5th April still seem appropriate
“…we will succeed, and that success will belong to all of us. We should take comfort that while we may have more to endure, better days will return.”
I know from my duties that the great strength of the City and County is in working together. That is so in respect of our faiths, our economy and our public services – and in many other ways.
It therefore troubles me to see signs of a ‘us and them’ attitude appearing, and seemingly the promotion of a divide between the City and County. That would be artificial and unhelpful at any time but particularly now in an emergency. I hope that will stop and calmer attitudes can prevail.
I very much look forward to meeting the people of the City and County again as the restrictions ease.
With all my very best wishes
HM Lord-Lieutenant of Leicestershire
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