How 100 days of coronavirus lockdown has changed the nation

The 100-day milestone has been passed since the nation entered lockdown with life before March 24 a distant memory.

This now means a simple trip to the shops is very different, while working from home and home-schooling the ‘new normal.’

Things taken for granted – the night out at the pub, trip to the cinema, weekend mini-break – have changed beyond recognition.

Even our vocabulary is different with words like shielding, self-isolation, the R number and lockdown itself now common, reports MirrorOnline.



The Oxford English Dictionary added 20 coronavirus words, including “elbow bump”, in April.

Here are some other ways the lockdown has changed Britain in the past 100 days.

Finance

With shops closed and long queues at supermarkets, shopping online, or buying their groceries locally has become more common.

One in five households purchased groceries online in the past month, pushing up sales for home delivery by 91 per cent, while small independent stores increased trade by 69 per cent in the three months to 20 June, according to analysts Kantar.

Nearly half of debit card transactions are now made online, and with cash seen as a potential vector for spreading the virus, and the contactless limit raised to £45.

Withdrawals from ATM fell as much as 62 per cent year-on-year with cash use declining, according to data from cash machine network, Link.

But while nearly two million UK households are set to emerge from restrictions better off after saving money, those with incomes less than £30,000 are more likely to have borrowed money and face a difficult future.

Economy

Figures have now shown the UK economy shrank 2.2 per cent between January and March, the joint largest fall since 1979.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) warns the world is set to take a £9.6 trillion Covid-19 hit, and Britain’s economy will contract by 10.2 per cent in 2020.

The Centre for Retail Research predicts as many as 20,000 shops could close this year with Debenhams, Laura Ashley and Cath Kidston already victims.



How 100 days of coronavirus lockdown has changed the nation

Workers furloughed fear redundancy once employers need to start paying some of their wages in August.

Working methods have changed with 1,500 working parents surveyed by Bright Horizons showing only around one in eight want to return to pre-pandemic ‘normal’. One in 10 business premises in London has already permanently closed.

Communication

Unknown to most before lockdown, millions are now familiar with video conferencing app Zoom, which by the end of April had over 300million daily meeting participants.

Some 75 per cent of elderly residents in of parts of the UK now regularly use Zoom, WhatsApp and FaceTime to connect with loved ones.

Lockdown has also given us the chance to meet our neighbours – going into the street to clap for carers, or getting together in community Whatsapp groups and Facebook pages.

Sport



How 100 days of coronavirus lockdown has changed the nation

When the Premier League restarted on June 17 there were cheers from football fans across the country.

But things are far from normal with matches behind closed doors and cardboard cut-outs of fans in the stadium seats.

Major sporting events like Wimbledon and the Tokyo Olympics have been cancelled or postponed, while Test cricket will take place in restricted bubbles without crowds.

Relationships

More than 40 per cent of people say that lockdown has had a positive effect on their lives. And, of these respondents, more than half said they were able to spend more quality time with the loved ones they lived with.

Many children have been away from school, yet just 37 per cent of working class parents feel confident home-schooling.

Sadly, there’s been a 42 per cent increase in divorce inquiries.

The Environment

Studies found daily global carbon dioxide emissions fell by 17 per cent compared with 2019 because of industry shutting down and a lack of traffic.

While CO2 levels still rose, reaching 417.2 parts per million in May – 2.4ppm higher than the peak of 414.8ppm in 2019 – scientists say that without Covid-19, the rise might have reached 2.8ppm.

NHS and key workers

The nation’s clap for carers, thanking our NHS, social care and key workers, became strict Thursday night routine.

But too many workers paid with their lives. Most – some analysis suggests 75 per cent – from BAME groups.

Schools/universities



How 100 days of coronavirus lockdown has changed the nation

Four in ten pupils across England have not been in regular contact with their teachers since schools shut.

Another report estimates around one in five UK pupils have done no schoolwork or managed less than an hour a day.

While seven out of 10 state school pupils have had just one online lesson or less per day, almost a third of private schools have been providing four or more, exposing a widening gap between the rich and poor.

Many universities have already announced most lectures will be online until summer 2021.

Politics



How 100 days of coronavirus lockdown has changed the nation

At the start of lockdown, three in four Britons agreed with government handling of the pandemic.

But a recent YouGov poll shows it now has the lowest domestic approval rating in the world (alongside Mexico) for its handling of Covid-19.

The PM’s approval ratings sit at just 39 per cent, not helped by the revelation his top aide Dominic Cummings defied lockdown rules.

An Opinium poll showed 37 per cent of voters think Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer would be better at leading the country, compared to 35 per cent for Boris Johnson.

Hobbies at home



How 100 days of coronavirus lockdown has changed the nation

The country has found new ways to keep occupied.

Flour production had to increase 10 fold to keep up with the surge in home baking. And, by April, there were over 2.7million photos tagged “sourdough” on Instagram.

For animal lovers, working from home has also provided the perfect opportunity to get a pet – with online searches for getting a puppy surging 120 per cent.

Exercise

Home workouts became popular as gyms were forced to close.

Many elite gyms, such as Barry’s Bootcamp and 1Rebel started streaming their classes on social media for free, while celebrities also started sharing their workout regimes with fans.

A Bupa study found that 28 per cent have upped their usual exercise and bike sales have spiked by 192 per cent.

On the down side, 7.2million eager exercisers have injured themselves during lockdown, with men twice as likely as women to get hurt.

Royals

William, Kate, Charles, Camilla and other members of the royal family kept busy with their charity work online.

The Countess of Wessex has been organising PPE shipments and working in a charity shop.

Prince Charles, who contracted the illness in March but recovered, backed a virtual book of remembrance for coronavirus victims and called on people to take part in a national effort to help farmers harvest fruit and vegetables.

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