An Eccles woman has decided to spend Christmas alone for the sake of keeping her family safe from Covid.
Julie Saunders is determined to look on the bright side of the isolation enforced on her by the pandemic lockdown.
She told Salford Now: “With it being an odd year this year, I’ve decided that its going to be easier to just spend Christmas here on my own. My family don’t live in the North West but they are in tier three and we are in tier three.
“I just think it’ll be easier to have it on my own, as its just one year. I keep telling myself it’s just one day and just the way that this year has gone.”
The 54-year-old reflected on the time she spent with her family before the second lockdown.
She continued: “At the end of summer and September, I saw them a couple of times.
“I was desperate to see them by then. I miss them, it’s been the longest I haven’t seen them for.
“I’m luckier than some. I have managed to see them a couple of times this year, just not as many times as I’d like.”
She is still in the Christmas spirit and explained how she will be spending her day.
She added: “I’m going to make the most of it. I’m going to get up, open my presents, I’ve got a little ready meal from Marks and Spencer’s and I’m going to sit and have that with a glass of sherry!
“Then hopefully I’ll fall asleep by about 8 o’clock and then when you wake up the next day that’s it isn’t it, it’s done and we’ve got through it”.
Listen to the full interview with Julie Saunders below:
Our recent poll found that 54% of people fear they won't be able to see older family members over the festive season for fear of putting them at risk through the #Covid_19 pandemic.
— Campaign to End Loneliness (@EndLonelinessUK) October 23, 2020
According to research by the charity Campaign to End Loneliness, 59 per cent of adults fear they will not be able to see family and friends during the festive season.
Almost a third worry about being alone on Christmas Day, while 54 per cent fear they won’t be able to visit elderly relatives due to putting them at risk of infection.
We asked individuals anonymously how they will be spending Christmas and these are some of the responses, in the following video:
There are nine million lonely people in the UK and four million of them are older people.
Age UK is open 365 days a year, including Christmas Day, providing comfort to older people on difficult days. If you or someone you love needs support, call for free on 0800 678 1602.
Likewise, if you are younger and feeling lonely, you can call SupportLine on 1708 765 200.