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Please remember - this thread can get a bit heated at times... try to keep politics out of it, and be respectful to the views of others.

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1 hour ago, VikingVoyager said:

I agree to an extent, though if you listen to a decent news programme, you will hear dissenting voices. On the other hand, look what happened when equal air time (and implied validity) was given to both sides of debates on Brexit / Climate Change. The conspiracy theories about Covid are truly shocking, both in their stupidity and level of belief.

Yes but in any democracy it must be, always, an integral component that all sides of a debate are allowed to be aired and discussed. If you cease to allow that, then those making the decisions cannot be properly challenged. I accept that there are always some strange points of view and that is usually found on all sides. But to deny democratic debate on the grounds of `An inconvenient truth` is a dangerous path to tread.

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We've a young crowd in here today!

It will be pasta and rice next, how have they got through the stockpiles from March?

Thanks everyone! 5 hours in theatre, all done. They misrouted the catheter and can't get a new one in. Pray I manage to pee before 10pm or the stick a pronged tube through my stomach.

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Just now, Paully said:

Yes but in any democracy it must be, always, an integral component that all sides of a debate are allowed to be aired and discussed. If you cease to allow that, then those making the decisions cannot be properly challenged. I accept that there are always some strange points of view and that is usually found on all sides. But to deny democratic debate on the grounds of `An inconvenient truth` is a dangerous path to tread.

I agree, and not allowing such questions to be made directly to the Government  would seem to be heading towards the scenario you describe.

However, away from the press conferences, the official approach certainly is being questioned in the media that I listen to and I can also see an argument for not muddying a public health message, which is what the Government briefings are supposed to be!

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40 minutes ago, cvabishop said:

At yesterday's press conference Johnson was taken to task for his over optimistic statements which invariable never seem to come true.

But he did say everything would be good for Easter... 🤐

 

He also avoided the whole Portsmouth/Fareham border issue... I think I saw that the local Lidl has some aisles in Tier 2 and some in Tier 4...

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I look forward to France owning up  to the variants it has, I understand that even Wales in one week tested the Genome sequence on more samples than France has done throughout the pandemic and the UK as a whole has done about half the global tests !

I don't see how the the driver testing regime is going to work unless they allow fast tests, If it is 72 hour PCR tests then continental or Irish drivers could test in their own countries before a trip to the UK !

ps and we can all forget European holidays until our infection rates come down, hopefully that will be by Easter or BF will have some real problems

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4 minutes ago, colin said:

France has just announced that all forms of transport can restart for French nationals, French residents and those with an legitimate reason to travel, but all must have a negative test.

The Irish will love that for the landbridge - BF could probably bring all of it's ships out of layup and run between Ireland and France for the next 3 months.

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One does get the impression that the French are playing games with an eye on the Brexit situation.

I feel really sorry for all the freight drivers trapped in the UK and unable to get back across the Channel despite being of  obviously minimal risk Covid wise.

Maybe putting UK and French politicilans in lorry cabs for several days with no money, no sanitary facilities and little food would concentrate their minds.

I am disgusted with the political performance on both sides of the Channel.

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5 minutes ago, cvabishop said:

I am disgusted with the political performance on both sides of the Channel.

On this one, I think it is unfair. The UK was honest re an issue which in all likelihood is widespread in Europe.

The French decided to close the freight border and let everyone sit in Kent, the main area of infection in the UK.

ps and there are comments from a French minister saying that they would have helped us if we were not leaving. That is not fair, until the end of the month we should be treated like every other Country. We are fair game come January and I am not expecting leisure travel until Easter at the earliest, however trade should function, including the Irish landbridge.

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I agree, the French have precipitated this but what is HMG doing to alleviate the sufferings of the freight drivers stuck in the middle of it all? Precisely nothing at the moment by all accounts. UK politicilans just seem to be wringing their hands to the extent that they acknowledge the problem alt all. It could be days before traffic gets flowing again so what are they doing in the meantime? Some inadequate toilets at Manston doesn't seem to cut it.

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I get the impression the current blockade is our French / EU friends giving us a taster of their tantrums if Brexit negotiations don’t go their way. Especially on the night the EU wanted everything wrapped up.

There are reports today of scientists in various countries surprised at the overreactions in the UK, EU etc to a virus variant that has been known about and tracked since mid September.

Convenient all round, n'est-ce pas?

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9 minutes ago, David Williams said:

If the UK has to provide the tests for lorry drivers,  I trust that we have decided on a suitable sequence of priority for conducting them.

Unfortunately I believe the rapid 30 minute result tests have proved wildly unreliable, so no quick and easy unblocking of Kent?

I understand the UK reactions about French action being unfair, but suspect that the eroding of trust in anything HM Gov says has come home to roost?

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The situation is not unfair, it is two sides playing a high stakes (no limit?) political poker game of shaping the future of Europe and a place within it, with the innocent caught in the cross fire. Not only the drivers, but BF, DFDS, P&O and many more on both sides of the channel.

Only in the 92nd week of vital negotiations can the real bluffs be called. The French just called the fishing, and raised the game by a blockade, so are the French all in, will the UK level, re-raise,  or will the UK or EU play the ultimate hand of 'no deal'.

Does it matter if the lateral flow tests are accurate? A faulty batch of all negative tests would nicely solve the blockade issue and get freight moving again. Power, money and trade (and lunches at The Elysee / No 10) are far more important than a 100% accurate virus test conducted in an orderly British manner.

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13 hours ago, cvabishop said:

I agree, the French have precipitated this but what is HMG doing to alleviate the sufferings of the freight drivers stuck in the middle of it all? Precisely nothing at the moment by all accounts. UK politicilans just seem to be wringing their hands to the extent that they acknowledge the problem alt all. It could be days before traffic gets flowing again so what are they doing in the meantime? Some inadequate toilets at Manston doesn't seem to cut it.

I agree. If this was queues for Portsmouth, it might make sense, as those drivers would be expecting to travel on Galicia anyway...🙊🙊

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7 hours ago, Macc2010 said:

Could The Gov want DFDS & P&O to run services on Christmas day to clear the backlog?

i can not see them clearing the backlog by Lunchtime Christmas eve when Dover services shut down.

They are going to want to get some extra portaloos into that airfield soon. Some genius has decided that curries will help the situation.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9081935/Lorry-drivers-face-stuck-days-make-shift-camp-Manston-airfield.html

Ed

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Glad to see that freight driver testing has started at Portsmouth & seems to be a bit smoother than Dover where at one point the port appeared to be blockaded !

https://www.portsmouth-port.co.uk/news/testing-underway-for-pre-booked-drivers

TESTING UNDERWAY FOR PRE BOOKED DRIVERS

 

We are pleased to announce that pre-booked freight drivers are on their way to France, sailing on the 1445 to Caen, after they received a negative covid test, which took place at the port.

Passengers must secure their own private tests, it is a government decision to prioritise the flow of trade. You will not be able to check in unless you have evidence of a test taken within the last 72 hours.

We are only permitting access to those with valid Brittany Ferries bookings, all sailings pre Christmas are full so do not attempt to travel to the port without confirmation as you will not be granted access.

Testing for pre-booked freight drivers is underway and will be in place until restrictions change.

 

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Pretty depressed tonight.

One of ny best friends and his  wife contracted the virus on 13th December after visiting relatives. They seemed to be  subsequently riding it out at home, poorly but not too desperate and last night he said they were both still stable but might want further medical help today if things didn't improve.

He died at 7:30 this morning.

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2 minutes ago, cvabishop said:

Pretty depressed tonight.

One of ny best friends and his  wife contracted the virus on 13th December after visiting relatives. They seemed to be  subsequently riding it out at home, poorly but not too desperate and last night he said they were both still stable but might want further medical help today if things didn't improve.

He died at 7:30 this morning.

I'm very sorry to hear that Colin. Everyone has to take responsibility for their decisions as I've said before and if you don't judge the situation to be safe then just politely refuse. You and your wife seem to have been very sensible in your decisions and obviously will continue to be until you are vaccinated. Take care.

Ed

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