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What was the Foot and Mouth outbreak like?

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 danieleaston 23 Mar 2020

I've noticed a few people mention that things were a bit like this (shut down) during foot and mouth. I remember being about 14 or something and having to dip my feet in a bucket.. Could someone explain what effect it had on the climbing? Were crags banned? How long did it last? did people comply with the ban? Were there endless 'discussions' on UKC (I'm guessing not) Were the crags horribly full when it lifted? Did climbers jeopardise future access by climbing there anyway? 

 mrphilipoldham 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

I wasn’t climbing at the time but yes, vast swathes of the countryside closed off. There was a rediscovery of some more urban crags though, I believe  Wharncliffe Crags was one, with new lines being put up. 

In reply to danieleaston:

It felt in every way trivial and a minor inconvenience compared with this. Maybe a bit different for farmers though.

2
In reply to danieleaston:

I think by and large climbers observed the ban but one of the lessons learnt was that it was uneconomic to close the countryside. However, this is a different situation and there may be no choice.

 JLS 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

I'd kinda forgotten there was a ban on many crags. I remember going to the lakes was ruled out but I think at that time most of my climbing was in places like Auchanstarry Quarry and Dumby which probably were ok with climbing as normal.

 DerwentDiluted 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

Things I remember,

The smell of burning flesh in Cumbria on the M6

Disinfectant mats on the A82 at Tyndrum

Wharncliffe and Millstone very very busy, Stannington Ruffs open but not quite drawing the crowds.

A Welsh hill farmer trampling over someones Paraglider in protest that while an local outdoor shop was loosing 10k a week, that was about equal to his annual profit he might have made if his sheep weren't all in flames.

'Contiguous Cull' being a policy rather than the consequence it seems to be currently.

Farmers self isolating, and people thinking they were getting needlessly arsey because they closed a footpath or two without really considering the importance of food production or the tenuous financial position of a lot of hill farmers. 

Going back to Burbage on day one of release to find a tiny sapling growing on The Chant, it will have lasted about another hour. Nature will heal in our absence, and thats comforting to me.

Finding a website which had all the climbing access information on and had a load of frustrated climbers arguing on it. I often wonder what happened to them, Rocktalk I think it was called.....

Post edited at 16:25
In reply to danieleaston:

Ahem! 

Which one?

 Heike 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

We managed to get to the Ben the day after the ban was lifted (living in Scotland and heard it on the news) and it was amazing, no-one there - as most people hadn't noticed - but super ice on all routes. We were climbing all weekend doing about five routes or so and camping near the CIC. 

Even thereafter it was never more busy than before.  We kept away and never broke the restrictions, but then you could  go abroad, which made it a lot easier to deal with the local crisis.

Post edited at 16:20
 barry donovan 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

Loads and loads of places closed but avon gorge was considered as urban and not rural so stayed open as i remember it. some Sheffield climbers came from gritstone to avon.

.  - they said they has never climbed on rock so precarious and polished and run out with such bag gear.

I said . . .  Yea 

2
 deepsoup 23 Mar 2020
In reply to mrphilipoldham:

> I wasn’t climbing at the time but yes, vast swathes of the countryside closed off. There was a rediscovery of some more urban crags though, I believe  Wharncliffe Crags was one, with new lines being put up. 

Wharncliffe saw a lot of development, but the prediction in the (1989?) Stanage guide that Stannington Ruffs would come back into fashion if there was ever another outbreak of foot & mouth turned out to be a step too far.

 Myfyr Tomos 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

Remember climbing at Tremadog on Saturday afternoon 24th February 2001 when foot and mouth broke, to find Eric closing off the cafe and carpark when we came down. Crazy few days of shutting off Snowdonia National Park carparks, mountains and paths followed and sitting in the Landrover for days on end to discourage would-be mountaineers. The initial shutting down happened remarkably quickly and was, on the whole, well observed and looking at the diary, there were some superb winter conditions in Snowdonia in late Feb/early March.

Removed some of the restrictions on Cadair Idris on Friday 18th of May crossing over from Ty Nant down to Minffordd, unlocking gates as I went, to partially reopen the mountain on Saturday 19th. It was so, so good to be back. Almost 20 years on, looks as if I'll be repeating the procedure.

Stay safe all.

 jkarran 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

I was climbing in Yorkshire as a student at the time of one, on the Isle of Man for the next. Most crags were closed, a few urban outcrops still open in Yorkshire, we all obeyed the bans, climbed a lot of buildings, did some road trips to open crags and areas, explored what we could. I guess most climbers did. The images and the smells were grim, as I'm sure was life and business for those caught up in it directly. The one when I was on the Isle of Man was smaller and weirder and closer to home, paths stayed open but fenced with crowd control barriers, coastal crags were open. Burning was more limited but you knew who'd lost everything.

For most people they were utterly trivial compared to this, their main detectable legacy today is diversified rural business and farm shops. This will be a catastrophe on the scale of the world wars and it will likely be just as transformative.

jk

1
 ena sharples 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

I just sneaked under the radar before a ban came in. Was walking into shenevall when the babylon questioned me on the road about what my plans were-despite their trying to disuade me i managed to convince them I knew what I was doing.

4
 charliesdad 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

Due to access restrictions, (heavily supported by the BMC et al), climbing pretty much stopped completely. As I recall;

1 This had no positive effect whatsoever, because the disease was transmitted in other ways. Mass slaughter of animals eventually stopped it.

2 It did have huge negative effects, including the collapse of many small non-farming businesses such as cafes, b&b’s, camp sites. Wikipedia suggests a cost to the economy of £8bn.

3 There WAS a vaccine which would have stopped the disease, but the farming industry vetoed this because it risked damaging the meat export trade, value £500m per annum.

 toad 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

I was managing a big suite of nature reserves, all with public access. We also had both sheep and cattle. I watched the early stages with growing alarm and then scrambled to shut down all our access. We had livestock stuck in the wrong place for months. There were talking heads from the agric industry ranting about visitors and disinfectant when we all knew that the problem was piss poor biosecurity. 

Before movements were shut down, infected sheep were travelling hundreds of miles shuttling like any other product with a view to getting the best price. And they took the infection with them. 

It was ironic that the resistance to reopening came from big arable farms. It was seen as an opportunity it to keep the public away. Wildlife crime spiked for similar reasons.

This was the point I went back to university. Much less hassle. Oddly enough that followed a period of horrendous flooding as well

 wintertree 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

Around our way it was very smelly as they threw carcasses into mass graves with a load of kerosene and torched them.  Is that students who were helping out spent their nights getting off their faces in town and I can’t say as I blamed them.

 d_b 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

It was unpleasant but insufficiently bad to get people climbing at Stannington Ruffs. The old BMC Stanage guide was wrong.

 Wiley Coyote2 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

I was working in the Lakes and Dales at the time and restrictions were almost universally very well observed. One reason, I think, was that they were very clearly spelled out. Rights of Way were legally suspended, gates were locked etc so everyone knew where they stood and what was expected of them

This crisis, despite being a very much bigger deal since humans are affected, is paradoxically much more muddled. We have a frequently-changing set of rules from the government being made even more confusing by a lot of others, whether well-intentioned or ill-informed, freelancing their own ideas. We have  Tim Gammon from Wetherspoons saying go to the pub  and you'll be fine while others (including on here) are saying restrictions should be tighter and  demanding people go further than the govt advice.

 HB1 23 Mar 2020
In reply to Tom V:

> Ahem! 

> Which one?

Which one indeed! I'm sure the OP means the more recent outbreak, when, for some reason, Ramshaw was open and so quite popular ( for me it didn't last, though!) The first one I remember would have been around 1965. A mate in the cycling club worked for a while burning the carcases. He didn't like it one bit

 danieleaston 23 Mar 2020
In reply to Tom V:

Ah, im only thirtysomething years old, so that one

In reply to danieleaston:

... as has already been pointed out... Foot and Mouth will be seen as minor inconvenience in comparison to this current crisis; yes, the outdoor industry suffered as did tourism in the National Parks plus a few other areas, but at least the businesses mentioned above were open and trading...

... what we have here is pretty much the whole of the entertainment / hospitality industry (cinemas, pubs, hotels, B&B's etc) shut, plus, all but essential retail, including, yet again, the whole of the outdoor industry, plus many other 'non essential' organisations / businesses... we're talking millions of jobs here...

... the government has gone some way to lessening the impact with the huge investment(s) in the economy announced last week plus support to pay many workers 80% of their salary... which, don't get me wrong, is great... 

... the thing that concerns me is I can't see how this is economically sustainable for more than maybe 3 months - I think the 'powers-that-be' are hoping beyond hope that the situation will have resolved itself to a certain extent by then... maybe by the end of May but if it hasn't...???

Post edited at 19:13
 Jenny C 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

Foot and mouth was very location dependant.

In the peak (where there were no cases), after an initial lockdown the local economy realised just how important tourism was and access was relaxed for recreation. Yes they're were lots of restrictions but you had options. 

In reply to HB1:

It was '67.

As a group of four youths we were more or less arrested walking back from Holmfirth  by a group of soldiers and driven to what is now Binn Green car park where we were told to walk through a trough of Jeyes Fluid. They then took us down to the Clarence bus stop and told us to "F*ck off home", which we did.

I told my dad all about it expecting some sense of moral outrage at the loss of our civil liberties but he thought it was hilarious.

That year Den Lane became very popular because it was not in an exclusion zone and I moved away from ticking off steam and diesel engines on the viaduct to messing about on the rocks. Eventually someone offered me a rope.

 Sam Beaton 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

In desperation we went to New Mills Tors because everywhere else was shut. It was so uninspiring we walked over to the Millennium Walkway in the town itself and climbed the railway embankment wall from it instead, protecting ourselves with slings around the brackets holding up a downpipe

 Darron 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

Apart from the horrors mentioned above I remember the awful feeling that we were stuck to tarmac. All public footpaths closed. Also remember Millstone being rammed (but enjoying GNR😊).

 deacondeacon 23 Mar 2020
In reply to Darron:

What was the reason for millstone escaping the ban? 

 Lankyman 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

I lost most of my income during 2001 (I was a walking holiday guide) and got no compensation from the government. It came to be realised that tourism was more important to the rural economy than farming (which did get compensated). I can recall many well-used paths becoming overgrown and some almost impassable when the ban was lifted. Cumbria was one of the worst affected areas and there were some strange anomalies in the exclusion zones. One I remember was the High Street bridleway which marked the boundary of one such exclusion zone. In theory, if you'd stepped off it to one side you'd have been liable to a £5,000 fine I think.

Compared to this, though, 2001 was nothing.

 mark s 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

it was tough for climbing outdoors. at the time there wasn't that many indoor walls to climb on. I was a member of a private in buxton called the hayloft. we climbed in there.

for us the first crag to open up before the others was Ramshaw rocks. I think it was because no livestock grazed on there. I don't remember it being over busy but they were different times.

 James Mann 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

I was living in Pembrokeshire at the time and access to some places was restricted. Anywhere that farmland had to be crossed was off limits. Places where you didn’t were accessible. People respected the restrictions by and large. 

 mark s 23 Mar 2020
In reply to deacondeacon:

no livestock I'm guessing. that was Ramshaw opened before others

 olddirtydoggy 23 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

I remember a bunch of us cancelling a hiking holiday in Wales. I was given the job of cancelling the cottage and had to deal with the poor women crying down the phone. I didn't understand the impact this crisis had on people until that call. The paths were all off limits and the group of 10 I booked with all bailed. Terrible times but nothing like this.

 Jenny C 23 Mar 2020
In reply to olddirtydoggy:

I think the big difference was that during F&M businesses were begging is to support them and the rural economy. Now we are being told with no uncertain to keep away. 

In reply to danieleaston:

The accounts above give a good feel of what it was like at the time, but I'm surprised what an emotional subject it remains for farmers. Spent a lot of time last year with a small dairy farmer and he is still furious about the way it was handled.

His herd, with a long blood line (which is important for value) was slaughtered. He did start to go off on slightly off tangents about it all being a government plot because they had lost track of the number of cows in Wales and wanted to cull everything so their sums added up. He also had his shotguns seized after threatening to shoot the government vets.  But despite these oddities, the pain it caused him was very clear, poor chap was close to tears 15 years on.

Post edited at 22:58
 Darron 24 Mar 2020
In reply to deacondeacon:

I honestly can’t remember. Could be it was banned at first and then opened early as others have mentioned re Ramshaw.

 pec 24 Mar 2020
In reply to Wiley Coyote2:

> This crisis, despite being a very much bigger deal since humans are affected, is paradoxically much more muddled. We have a frequently-changing set of rules from the government being made even more confusing by a lot of others, whether well-intentioned or ill-informed, freelancing their own ideas.

During the foot and mouth outbreak of 2001 the government, not unreasonably, largely adopted procedures from the 'relatively' recent 1967 outbreak. There were clear procedures to follow and there was the benefit of hindsight to adapt these since both outbreaks were within the career span of many people.

Despite this, they still made mistakes because they failed to realise that in the intervening period the tourist economy of the countryside had greatly eclipsed the livestock farming industry. There were also messaging mistakes with ministers telling us "the countryside is still open for business" when although it technically was, what most people went there to do wasn't allowed.

In contrast, the most recent comparable event in this country to Covid was the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic. The world has changed beyond recongnition since then so the government would have fallen back on the 2011 Influenza Pandemic Preparedness Strategy.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/213717/dh_131040.pdf

Clearly there's going to be some useful stuff in there but nevertheless this isn't influenza and it doesn't remotely anticipate the scale of this pandemic. If you look through it you can see why the government adopted much of its approach.

For example:

Page 39   "There is very limited evidence that restrictions on mass gatherings will have any significant effect on influenza virus transmission14. Large public gatherings or crowded events where people may be in close proximity are an important indicator of ‘normality’ and may help maintain public morale during a pandemic. The social and economic consequences of advising cancellation or postponement of large gatherings are likely to be considerable for event organisers, contributors and participants. There is also a lack of scientific evidence on the impact of internal travel restrictions on transmission and attempts to impose such restrictions would have wide-reaching implications for business and welfare."

"For these reasons, the working presumption will be that Government will not impose any such restrictions. The emphasis will instead be on encouraging all those who have symptoms to follow the advice to stay at home and avoid spreading their illness. However, local organisers may decide to cancel or postpone events in a pandemic fearing economic loss through poor attendances, and the public themselves may decide not to mix in crowds, or use public transport if other options are available."

Page 57    "During a pandemic, the Government will encourage those who are well to carry on with their normal daily lives for as long and as far as that is possible, whilst taking basic precautions to protect themselves from infection and lessen the risk of spreading influenza to others (see Chapter 4). The UK Government does not plan to close borders, stop mass gatherings or impose controls on public transport during any pandemic."

There's plenty more like that in there, for example it estimates the loss to the economy could be £28 billion, if only!

Governments throughout the west have been totally caught out by the speed, scale and nature of this. It would be incredible if the response hadn't been found wanting in some areas. People need to be a bit more understanding instead of adopting the carping armchair expert critic role and thank god we don't live in a developing country where if/when this takes hold it will rip there societies apart.

No doubt some will tell us how Hong Kong etc are so much better prepared, well that's like saying Florida is better prepared for hurricanes than we are and Canada better prepared for blizzards. Of course they are, Hong Kong borders China where most of these diseases originate, they've got to be on a permanent state of readiness and their populations are already very recpetive to the message. But there's a 1001 things that could potentially affect us, natural disasters, extreme weather phenomenon, any number of styles of terrorist attack, cyber attacks, meteorite impact etc etc.

If people expect we can have a perfectly tailored action plan to deal with each and every one of these ready to roll out without any hiccups they are living in a dream world.

>To Wiley Coyote2

Sorry, I'm not singling you out specifically for criticsim here, just that the bit of your post I quoted above got me onto this train of thought I've been mulling over for a few days now. Don't take it too personally.

Post edited at 10:42
 Wiley Coyote2 24 Mar 2020
In reply to pec:

No offence taken. In fact tbh I did not even see it as criticism. I agree that it is unrealistic to expect govts to have  perfect  off-the-shelf plans for every contingency and previous outbreaks can only be a guide not a blueprint. I was  contrasting the very clear instructions during FMD outbreak (some of which did indeed turn out to be mistakes but at least everyone knew what they were meant to be doing or not doing) with the muddled messages this time.

The classic was the decision that pubs could keep their doors open - but  no one  should actually go through them. Small wonder people ignored that advice and went for a beer because "Let's face it, if it was  dangerous they would have banned it. Another round, lads?" Cue horror from ministers that people were still going to the very pubs those same ministers had kept open.

Likewise the pre-weekend message that people could safely enjoy outdoor exercise (with the very important proviso of 2m separation) followed 24 hours later by criticism of 'selfish' people who went out into the countryside or parks to enjoy outdoor exercise. Criticism of those who ignored the 2m separation would have been fair but to attack those who were only abiding by 24-hour-old govt advice added to the impression of muddle, mismanagement and making-it-up-as-we-go-along confusion. I was out in the countryside both days myself on what I quite rightly believed were govt-approved outings (and did observe the distancing). So I was quite irritated by retrospective criticism of something that had been given the all clear the day before and, yes, it did make me think "You really haven't a clue what you are doing, have you?" which is not the sort of confidence I would like to have at least in the officials even if I don't trust the politicians.

 pec 24 Mar 2020
In reply to Wiley Coyote2:

Despite a popular school of thought, Boris is actually quite a libertarian and its shows in his reluctance to ban things, preferring people to take responsibility for themselves.

I'd agree that in this case that's proved to be a weakness.

 Hat Dude 24 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

I guess the short answer to the OP is

Nowhere near as bad as this -unless you were a sheep or cow!

In reply to Wiley Coyote2:

Indeed. The weekend also coincided with nice weather - if it had been more usual March weather, the crowds won’t have been there.

In reply to pec:

That reluctance could be clearly seen in Sunday’s press conference and indeed in the relatively soft and vague measures introduced (plus the fact that currently there is no legislative basis for them). However as the past few weeks have shown, such things can soon be overtaken by events and what seems draconian one day will seem light touch a few days later.

Now that there is pretty clear guidance, I hope most people will stick to it, thus avoiding the need for further restrictions. I suspect it will take a few days for most people’s behaviour to fully adjust.

As for FMD, I wasn’t climbing back then but was into road cycling. There were pictures of burning carcasses and ramblers having to wash their boots on the news. Can’t remember whether beef and lamb became more scarce / expensive. Other than that, most people in cities and large towns simply weren’t affected directly. The only thing I recall as far as cycling was concerned was having to go over rags soaked with disinfectant across some country lanes and possibly some areas were closed or you were asked not to stop. Pretty minor stuff really for a city dweller. For farmers and countryside dwellers it was a major issue of course. 

 wercat 24 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

At the time the burnings started round here it was cold and with breezes that made the smoke from the burning pits cling to the ground in a thick stream

We had 2 burning pits each about a mile away from the house, one to the south and one to the West.   There seemed to be few days when one or other didn't reach us and you didn't smell the stench of rotten burning flesh and tarry coal - you tasted it, out of doors and indoors it was the same.  The house seemed to harbour the taste and stench and it went on for a long time.

In Eamont Bridge there was a pile of dead sheep and cattle in the field between the Lowther Park entrance and the Ullswater turn off for more than a week (I drove past it every day and it stank after a short while).

If you looked out from the village in any direction you would have pyres in your view at various distances and the roads were full of carcass collecting lorries which stank if you got behind one or passed it on the road, often with stuff dripping out.

The awful thing was seeing young lambs with their mothers in the fields as the line of death advanced through Cumbria leaving only dead silent fields.  They started calling it "The Silent Spring" on the local radio. One day there would be sheep and lambs enjoying new life, then "the men" would be seen near the farm and there'd be a heap of corpses in the field.

It was bloody awful.

Post edited at 15:07
1
 pec 24 Mar 2020
In reply to Misha:

> However as the past few weeks have shown, such things can soon be overtaken by events and what seems draconian one day will seem light touch a few days later.

Draconian measures can be more effective but there's the problem of trying to take the public with you. If you can then there's more chance they will stick with you when things get really bad which may be better in the long run.

I'm sure in countries near China draconian measures work better because recent experience means the public are more receptive to them. Even other European countries are more used to this kind of thing, they have to carry ID, police are routinely armed, issue on the spot fines and tend to go in heavy handed when there's trouble - firing tear gas and suchlike.

We don't do that, it's much more consensual so launching straight in to draconian measures risks a backlash and non compliance.

Who knows which is ultimately most effective? It's a tough call and timing is critical, who'd want to be in PMs shoes right now?

I do agree that some of the guidance assumes a level of intelligence and self restraint that a lot of people don't have.

Deadeye 24 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

Quite bad if you were a cow

 John H Bull 24 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

Ramshaw and Gogarth (main and upper tier) both got very busy, the only time ever for either in my experience.

I still wonder why they didn't stay that way...

In reply to pec:

Agree - and hope that some people will adjust their behaviour before additional measures are needed (reports of police breaking up a BBQ today attended by 20 people!). We need a long spell of typical British weather to sort this out... Won’t help with the congestion on the Tube though.

 Martin Bennett 24 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

Which one? I remember the effects on climbing of both the 1967 and 2001 ones. Being based in the NW of England on both occasions our usual haunts were The Lakes and West Yorks limestone and gritstone. All off limits. Except . . .  in 1967 the Yorkshire lads developed this horrendous huge quarry called Langcliffe with routes up to about 300 feet. Everybody went there. Once! It then hardly got climbed on until the 80s when bolting caught on and an outcrop near the top rim was developed and became a quite popular spot.

 pec 25 Mar 2020
In reply to Misha:

> We need a long spell of typical British weather to sort this out... Won’t help with the congestion on the Tube though.

Running a full tube and bus service would help to spread people out. Even consider suspending the congestion charge?

 Gerry 25 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

We were climbing on Raven Crag, Langdale, at the start of the 1967/8 outbreak. Yes, we knew it was happening but took advice from a ranger who said it would be OK just up there. Half way through the morning there was a bang and a man with a shotgun shouted "get - off - my - f****** - mountain". Needless to say we did, and after feet dipping at the bottom all was made as well as it could be under the circumstances. After that, no climbing. 

The 1980s outbreak was seriously mismanaged by the urban-centric labour government and allowed to spiral out of control, followed by the army called in to help, mass burning of animals etc. No climbing or walking anywhere I could get to until it was over. If I recall correctly Portland was the first place we were allowed back to for climbing.

Covid-19 is different of course, as it affects us. Another big difference is the the government and the scientists are on the ball this time. You may note that new restrictions have been introduced before large upswings in cases or deaths, unlike Italy at the start. Unfortunately quite a few of the #me-first generation seem to think it doesn't apply to them. The goings-on in Snowdonia and other places last weekend were a shameful display. I also worry about the education some of these people have received as they don't seem to have a clue what 2 metres is. 

In reply to pec:

> Despite a popular school of thought, Boris is actually quite a libertarian and its shows in his reluctance to ban things, preferring people to take responsibility for themselves.

> I'd agree that in this case that's proved to be a weakness.


He seems a lot more keen to ban socialising and walking in the hills than work on construction sites and in factories, though, doesn't he? Lockdown, apart from if you're a low paid manual worker, in which case you and your family is expendable in the pursuit of profit.

 pec 25 Mar 2020
In reply to pancakeandchips:

> He seems a lot more keen to ban socialising and walking in the hills than work on construction sites and in factories, though, doesn't he? Lockdown, apart from if you're a low paid manual worker, in which case you and your family is expendable in the pursuit of profit.

He's been anything but keen to ban socialising and walking in the hills. Let's say he's marginally less reluctant to ban them.
There is a school of thought (amoungst proper academics, not armchair experts) that if GDP falls by more than 6.5% then that will ultimately cause more deaths than the virus itself, as reported on R4 this lunchtime. Keeping people working where possible is not a stupid idea.

I don't think the construction workers in London could be classed as low paid by any stretch of the imagination.

https://www.indeed.co.uk/salaries/construction-worker-Salaries,-London-ENG

On those kind of salaries they really ought to have some reserves on which to fall back given the inherantly unstable nature of the work. I have and I don't earn a fraction of that.

Post edited at 14:11
In reply to pec:

In the list of jobs available in your link there's a construction project and site manager advertised. You don't think things like that might be skewing the average a bit? I can assure you I've never seen a construction job going that pays more than a third of that, although I don't live anywhere near London.

Funny that parliamentary oversight of government in a crisis like this is deemed unnecessary but constructing luxury flats needs to happen post haste...

Of course a massive fall in GDP will hurt a lot of people. I just think disproportionately sacrificing working class families to keep it up is a bad look.

There's been a big fall in greenhouse gas emissions over the past three months due to the lockdown. Lives might be saved by stalling increases in concentrations of CO2, or lost because of a drop in output, but ultimately we don't know what our society will look like after this crisis. Will we go back to business as usual? Or will people continue to work at home? Will we slide into another great depression? Or will we learn lessons from this and rebalance our economy around the essentials to make us more resilient when we face the next crisis? And will the government ever give up the emergency powers they're being granted right now? Economists have no better idea than you or I what political changes might happen as a result of this.

Please spare a thought for the self-employed and newly unemployed who are waiting in digital queues hundreds of thousands of people long to claim £95 per week universal credit. Most precarious workers don't have much of a safety net and won't ever have earned anything like the preposterous sum you linked to. I've saved a deposit for a house which makes me ineligible for any state support at all beyond two weeks esa if I actually get sick. I guess I'll just have to spend it.

 pec 25 Mar 2020
In reply to pancakeandchips:

> Please spare a thought for the self-employed and newly unemployed who are waiting in digital queues hundreds of thousands of people long to claim £95 per week universal credit.

Absolutely, I'm one of the self employed! But because I've been at it a while and 'done the right thing' by saving for a rainy day I can't even claim the £95 per week. That said, it's almost worth sacrifing £95p.w. to not have to jump through all those bureaucratic hoops ;-) (that was a joke)

Anyhow, it looks like something will be announced tomorrow. Fingers crossed it will stop me denuding what should have been my pension.

Post edited at 22:13
 wilkesley 26 Mar 2020
In reply to Gerry:

> We were climbing on Raven Crag, Langdale, at the start of the 1967/8 outbreak. Yes, we knew it was happening but took advice from a ranger who said it would be OK just up there. Half way through the morning there was a bang and a man with a shotgun shouted "get - off - my - f****** - mountain". Needless to say we did, and after feet dipping at the bottom all was made as well as it could be under the circumstances. After that, no climbing. 

> The 1980s outbreak was seriously mismanaged by the urban-centric labour government and allowed to spiral out of control, followed by the army called in to help, mass burning of animals etc. No climbing or walking anywhere I could get to until it was over. If I recall correctly Portland was the first place we were allowed back to for climbing.

I am a farmer. We have had three F&M outbreaks in my lifetime, although I am too young to remember the first. The  1980's government totally failed to implement the lessons learned in 1967. As soon as you detect the outbreak, ALL animal movement is stopped. Where possible bury infected animals on the farm to avoid the possibility of transmitting infection by moving them elsewhere. We were lucky that we weren't infected in the 1980's, although the initial outbreak was close to us. We have two mass graves in the field behind our buildings.

Obviously that policy wouldn't be possible to implement in the Coronavirus outbreak.

 toad 26 Mar 2020
In reply to wilkesley:

Do you mean the 2000  outbreak, or was there another one in the 80s as well? I don't remember any big closures then, but I was at school / uni and didn't always watch the news. My family were farmers, but no livestock

In reply to toad:

I remember I didn't go climbing much during the 2000 one  - I was working most days on long distance livestock licensing 

 wilkesley 26 Mar 2020
In reply to toad:

Yes. Calendar error! It was the 200 outbreak. No outbreak in the 80's from what I can remember. The first outbreak was circa 1957 and as I was only 2 I don't remember it!

 ill_bill 26 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

In 1967 I was in my first year at Hull University.  I can remember that the Peak was off limits although we did go to Stanage for the Freshers Meet. We were forced to go further afield - North Yorkshire - so we climbed on Almscliff. It was misty and scary! I have never been back! I think we did quite a bit of night climbing on the university buildings.

 Guy Hurst 26 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

I remember driving home to the Cumbrian village where I still live after a day of talking to desperate/angry/depressed farmers and going past a farm where they were just lighting a massive bonfire under some cows which had been culled quite a few days before. Rats which had been feasting were fleeing from the fire and across the road a was heading along. Driving through a sea of gorged rats is not nice, nor was the smell from the bonfire which burned for days.

 johncb 27 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston: I was not climbing in 1967, but there were numerous restrictions, boot washing, etc.

 pec 27 Mar 2020
In reply to wilkesley:

> I am a farmer. We have had three F&M outbreaks in my lifetime, although I am too young to remember the first. The  1980's government totally failed to implement the lessons learned in 1967.

Was there really an outbreak in the 1980s? I'm not saying there wasn't but I don't remember anything about one and can't find any reference to one on line, just the '67 and 2000 outbreaks and a minor outbreak in 2007.

 deepsoup 27 Mar 2020
In reply to pec:

<googles>
http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/hi/dates/stories/march/23/newsid_2531000/2531311.stm

E2A: Though it's hard to see how the government of the time dropped the ball on this one - they were lucky in that it was already mostly contained on a small island I guess.

Post edited at 09:11
 wercat 27 Mar 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

there have been a lot of other fairly serious outbreaks of other animal diseases - SVD I seem to remember in the 60s or 70s being treated fairly seriously with a lot of restrictions

 wilkesley 27 Mar 2020
In reply to wercat:

I get a few notifications each year about outbreaks of Avian flu from DEFRA. Fortunately, none of them  seem to have spread from the site of the initial infection.

 pec 27 Mar 2020
In reply to deepsoup:

> E2A: Though it's hard to see how the government of the time dropped the ball on this one - they were lucky in that it was already mostly contained on a small island I guess.


Thanks, I was too young for it register on my radar I suppose since it was such a limited outbreak it wouldn't have been big news but I've never heard reference to it either.

Googling various things like "UK foot and mouth outbreaks" didn't seem to bring up anything.

 Des Hannigan 07 Apr 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

LIBERATING CHAIR LADDER FROM FOOT & MOUTH...AND PRINCESS ANNE

You had to have sympathy for farmers during the 2001 Foot & Mouth crisis, but in West Cornwall some of the restrictions were farcical. The entire coast path and all Cornish cliffs were off-limits, yet long sections of coast path had no cattle near them. With the coast path closed, scores of walkers went stravaiging along the public roads. I took several pics of cows with their heads over roadside gates while road walkers tickled their ears and fed them handfuls of grass in the celebrated human ritual of stuffing cute animals with ‘food’.

I was freelancing for several newspapers at the time. There was a threatened demo by holiday-let owners at Lamorna Cove because their trade had collapsed. They said they would stage a mass trespass along the coast path. There was a heavy police presence on the day. Devon & Cornwall’s District Commissioner was there in his finery and with a squad of benign uniforms blocking off the coast path in either direction. Hidden around the corner of the farthest car park, however, was a riot squad transit with a full complement of heavies just in case the pitchforks came out. TV crews were there in strength and even a Telegraph hack turned up late after going to Land's End. Mr. Big Bobby knew me and knew that I was Press. He confirmed that ‘My officers will arrest anyone who attempts to walk along the coast path.’

In the event, the leader of the little group of demonstrators made a half-hearted speech and they all went home.

Job done. Big Bobby was usefully garrulous and suddenly told me that he'd be back the following week because Princess Anne was due to visit the Gwennap Head Lookout above Chair Ladder . Helicoptered in to meet National Coastwatch Institute members, County toffs, local councillors, farmers and St Aubyn Estate biggies for some official jolly.

‘Surely that’s illegal,’ I said. ‘The coast path is closed to walkers and visitors.’ You could hear his sphincter slam shut at fifty metres.  

‘Everyone will remain on the hard standing round the lookout or be inside the lookout’ he said. ‘Her Highness will then leave by car…’

‘Risk of angry demonstrators there,’ I said, just trying to help

Even greater sphincter-slam as it dawned on the DC that the narrow road down from the lookout to the Porthgwarra car park was ideal for a mass demonstration.

‘YOU CANNOT PRINT THIS INFORMATION!’

‘OH YES, I CAN.’

And I did, after frightening the St Aubyn Estate office, Cornwall Council and the NCI headquarters into a handful of lame quotes. A week later, two days after the story hit the page and the week before Her Highty Toity was due at Gwennap Head, Cornwall Council announced the opening of the coast path from Porthgwarra to Nanjizel as a gesture of gratitude for the public’s 'patience’.

 On the day of Princess Anne's visit you couldn’t get near the Gwennap Head lookout for security, of course. I think there were some flag wavers and excited Royalists down by the car park.  But Chair Ladder (without a bullock in sight) was liberated for climbers thereafter while the rest of the coast stayed closed for some time to come. I didn't even get a medal from the BMC or the Climbers' Club but cemented my reputation as a troublemaker with the 'authorities' I'm pleased to say. I was not invited to cover the royal visit either, I’m even more pleased to say.

 gribble 07 Apr 2020
In reply to Des Hannigan:

Thank you.  I enjoyed that!

 mike123 07 Apr 2020
In reply to danieleaston: 2001. I remember driving to work one morning and just outside the village in Cumbria  I lived was a field with about 15 young pedigree  bullocks ( I don't know the breed but they were pure white ) running around , they were the hobby of one of the local farmers and  he regularly won shows with them . They were in prime condition and a magnificent sight . The same day martin the farmer had opened  sheperds  crag( or it had become clear it wasn't shut or something like that  ). I got a message from my mate who knew him well and So rushed home after work egar to pick up my gear and get a couple of routes in . As I drove into the village there stood the farmer and as I gave him a cheery wave ( after all I was off cragging ) I realised he was stood looking at a field full of white corpses.  Of course, I still went cragging . 

 ScraggyGoat 07 Apr 2020
In reply to Des Hannigan:

The restrictions on going into the countryside in Scotland lifted about a week before some elections. I got to the polling station and there was still a big sign saying don't go into the Countryside.  So I ripped it off the door and binned it.  The Tory candidate accosted me saying I was a vandal and irresponsible as farmers and landowners didn't want people visiting.  I pointed out that the Tories weren't in power, weren't going to be in power, and the will of a  democratically elected government had opened the countryside and if he didn't like it he ought to tell the voters in the constituency so they could cast thier votes appropriately.  He sulked off and didn't get elected.

Post edited at 11:08
 LastBoyScout 07 Apr 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

I remember camping at Croyde, either surfing, climbing or both. On the way into the car park, they were spraying car wheels with disinfectants and a lot of places you just drove over a large bit of carpet soaked in the stuff. Lots of foot paths around/through farm land were closed to try and prevent the spread.

Some family friends run a large dairy farm in Devon and the general feeling seemed to be that the public were fine and it was the health inspectors visiting all the farms for the testing that were the ones actually spreading the disease!

 Simon Caldwell 09 Apr 2020
 mark s 10 Apr 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

we went to ramshaw the night before it was opening. a warden parked up on the road and chucked us off. those wee diffeent days,i suspect now climbers would would grass you up for daring to break the rules.

1
In reply to mark s:

It was good timing for Ramshaw, it had a well-deserved revival just in time for the guidebook.  A lot of the hard test pieces were repeated and people I'd only ever seen in magazines were on our patch!

Just as the current shut-down is having a positive effect on the environment, the closure of the crags during the nesting season meant that the Roaches, in particular, were reclaimed by the birds.  The first day the crags were reopened I went up and was amazed by the redstarts and tawny owls nesting in cracks in the popular parts of the Upper Tier.  It made me aware of how much our activities do disturb wildlife however careful we think we are.  

 Sam Beaton 18 Apr 2020
In reply to Dave Garnett:

Prompted by the joke (I think it was a joke anyway!) on another thread about Stanage currently being covered in ring ouzel nests, I went up on the Malvern Hills straight after F and M and saw literally dozens of occupied skylark nests right alongside the main path along the ridge

 Dave Musgrove 20 Apr 2020
In reply to danieleaston:

I remember the 67/8 outbreak. If I remember correctly most of the restrictions were in December/January and much of the Yorkshire Dale's and Peak grit edges were closed off but  but I have records of climbing at Caley and Ilkley. In January I remember Willersley and Black Rocks were accessible in Derbyshire and I'm pretty sure we went to Windgather near Buxton as well. By February we were climbing on Tremadoc and Gogarth. 

It was certainly not a comparable situation the current one. 


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