As I write we are all hoping that we can all still enjoy the Christmas break without too much interference from Omicron inspired regulations, and with a bit of common sense still meet up with friends and family we missed last year. Can I take this opportunity to thank all of those working in the NHS and the army of volunteers backing them up in the vaccination centres especially, who will be working hard over the festive season to keep us safe, as they have over the rest of this difficult year? As I have reported in my vaccine update on my Facebook page it is incredible that booster capacity has effectively been doubled in Sussex in the last few days.
We should also take a moment to extend our thanks and respect for all those in public services, the armed forces and our local Lifeboat volunteers who will be on duty to protect us whilst the rest of us tuck into the turkey.
Another organisation which will not be able to pack up and go on their holidays this week is the Dogs Trust and it was great to pay a visit to their Shoreham Rehoming Centre to catch up last Friday. The 50 or so dogs they currently have in residence will still need to be looked after on Christmas Day and Assistant Head Vicky who showed me round and her colleagues will be there to serve up a doggy turkey dinner. Nationally with its 21 rehoming centres and rescue centres this excellent 130 year old charity cares for 14,000 dogs each year.
One statistic that struck me is that there has been a huge boom in pet ownership during the pandemic with 12 million pet dogs now across the UK. The worry is that as people emerge from lockdown and their working patterns change owning a dog loses its appeal and the Dogs Trust and similar animal welfare charities will have their work cut out. So, the message is now ‘A dog is for life not just for lockdown.’
Have a great Christmas everyone and hopefully a much better 2022.