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Category Archives: National Trust
Having read the following data in the newspaper today, the last day of April, then the Covid-19 situation seems to be improving rapidly.
‘The numbers falling ill with the Covid have dropped to the lowest level since the pandemic began. The number of over 80’s with infections is now at a record low’.
I could go on with many other statistics but the main point is that hopefully the roadmap will continue to progress and eventually clear us to resume many aspects of our lives. Hopefully National Trust properties will be more fully opened over May and June. All good news.
As I said last month, the vital factor for our group will be rules on social distancing on transport. Those of you who have ventured on to a bus or tram recently will know the problems present there. I hope that by the time of the next Newsletter then this situation will be clearer. I have received an email on behalf of two members who are so keen to resume that they are willing to pay twenty pounds each for the Fountains Abbey visit so that we could socially distance on two buses should this be the only thing stopping us going ahead.
If any other members have views on this please let me know by contacting us via the form below. This will allow us to gauge opinion should we reach this situation.
Barrie and Sue Saunders
The situation with regard to Covid-19 guidelines and restrictions seems to be improving but also still remains uncertain for reasons that we are all aware of such as the situation in Europe and a possible slowing down of the vaccination programme. For our group there are still some major hurdles to overcome.
Firstly, with regard to coach travel there are strict guidelines in place regarding the wearing of masks on board, social distancing rules to protect the driver and passengers which mean that it is not possible to run coaches at anywhere near full capacity. There are also regulations with regard to how to board the coach itself, where social distancing must be maintained.
Secondly, as you will be aware, National Trust properties are only operating at a reduced capacity for people who live locally to exercise. Car parking is limited and there is presently no facility to book coaches in for a day. Indoor facilities are closed for the foreseeable future although plans to open indoor cafes etc are being planned.
Thirdly, The Third Age Trust require that we complete a Risk Assessment before going on any visit. Whilst it may be possible for some u3a groups to meet in numbers up to six in the relatively near future, I think that the date which will determine our progress will be June 21st, when a decision will be made on Social Distancing and the wearing of face masks.
IF decisions made in June allow, then we will book the dates for the first two visits and let group members know immediately. We will put a short further update in the May Newsletter and on this website. In the meantime if you have any suggestions or comments please contact Sue or myself via the form below:-
When Sue and myself offered to take over the group after Sue Spolton decided to leave the position, little did we know that a year later we would still not have been on any visits!!
We do not want to dwell on the negatives from the past months but rather look forward to hopefully better times in 2021.
I am sure most members will have received email updates from the National Trust and be aware of the present limited access which is available to their properties. You will probably be aware that Belton House are running their Light Show but with very limited pre-booked places available. Although not a National Trust property, Wollaton Hall are operating a similar display. Although while writing this piece it looks like Ashfield is going to go into Tier 3 so limiting travel and visits even further.
When we do see some progress with Covid-19 and we get permission from the U3A, and Government rules allow, we will be visiting Fountain’s Abbey and then we have four more visits, one each to Yorkshire and Derbyshire and two to Warwickshire all planned.
We hope everyone in the group is staying safe and healthy.
Sue and Barrie Saunders,
As you will be very aware the situation with Covid -19 is still so uncertain that making progress towards selecting dates for our planned trips is impossible at the moment. The National Trust is very slowly opening up some sites, but at present bookings are only being taken on a Friday for the following week with very limited availability.
We will make a decision on the way forward in September but sadly it may be 2021 before we can resume our visits.
When we do eventually restart then we will still make Fountains Abbey our first visit. As previously stated the cheques for the visit to Nostell Priory will be SHREDDED but those of you who have paid your cheques will, of course, have your places reserved for the eventual rearranged date.
Thank you all for your understanding and patience at what is an unprecedented time in our history!!
If you need to contact Sue or myself at anytime please use the form below:-
We hope that everyone is staying safe and healthy through these unprecedented times. The one consolation has been the beautiful weather!!
Members may be aware that the National Trust is planning to re-open most of their grounds in the near future but the plans for opening up the Houses and other buildings will come later. At present the proposal is for people to book places on the Friday of the week before you intend to visit, but that obviously is only going to apply to people from the same household until Lockdown is eased completely.
Our biggest problem at the moment is the travelling by coach which is just not possible under the present Social Distancing rules. When the situation has eased then we still intend to go to Fountains Abbey on our first visit.
May I repeat our huge thanks to those who had paid to go to Fountains Abbey for allowing us to keep your payments. This has saved the Treasurer and ourselves a lot of work and is appreciated. It has also helped the bus company who are family run and were very grateful for the funds.
For those people who have paid to go to Nostell Priory, then we have kept your cheques secure and will SHRED them after the six month limit, if the virus situation still stops us from booking a new date. If we are able to arrange a new date before the cheques expire then we will check your availability before cashing your cheques.
If you have any questions please contact us using the form below:-
In the meantime take care and keep safe.
Barrie & Sue Saunders.