April 9 2021

Today is a very sad day. The death of His Royal Highness, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, brings to an end a remarkable life of such a supportive husband of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth 11. I am sure you will all have memories of your own. Few if any of us will ever manage a marriage lasting 73 years. In my 20s, I did a lot of training in London youth clubs preparing youngsters for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme. I met him on several occasions both at a reception in Buckingham Palace and on boat trips on the River Thames. My thoughts and prayers are with Her Majesty, their children and all their families as they cope with their grief in a time of great difficulty with Covid.

I was heavily involved in the medical preparations for the funerals of Princess Diana and the Queen Mother. I understand the extra strain that staying Covid secure will bring to the planning. One issue is worth noting, The Palace have asked specifically that people do not lay flowers outside the Palace or at Windsor Castle. They rightly consider the congregating crowds and those reading tributes will be a considerable Covid risk that cannot be managed. Instead, we are asked to leave an online tribute as a web site has been opened and to make a donation to a suitable charity. I would strongly urge you to respect The Queen’s view about this rather than just follow the tradition. We must not add to her loss and grief by causing a Covid outbreak.

Boris Johnson has cancelled his arrangement to go out for a pint in a newly opened pub on Monday. Many other events are likely to be cancelled or modified in the eight days of public mourning.

Today’s data continues to move us all in the right directions. There have now been 6.54 million second jabs given. There were 3,150 cases testing positive out of 931,579 test done. The positive rate continues to fall and is now 32.7/100k.The deaths recorded today are only 60. This is a 25.8% drop on 1 week ago and is a death rate of 0.3/100k. In hospitals only 3,005 people now occupy beds as inpatients. 233 more were admitted on 5th April and 421 were being treated on a ventilator on 8th April.

There is very little other news about Covid tonight. Fortunately, in the UK at least all is going to plan. I will bring you up to date tomorrow .

I will say no more tonight please respect the wishes of our Queen, do not congregate outside the Palace or take flowers there.

Ensure you stay safe..

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