Council leader praises Hucknall's response to lockdown
The leader of Ashfield District Council has praised Hucknall’s ‘thriving sense of community’ which he says has been key to the town getting through a year of lockdown and restrictions.
Coun Jason Zadrozny (Ash Ind) was speaking as the country marks a year since the first national lockdown of the Covid-19 pandemic.
He said: “What the pandemic has shown me is the continuing, thriving sense of the community of Hucknall.
"So many of you have been amazing.
"Whether that be Hucknall residents who work at City Hospital, Kings Mill Hospital or Queen’s Medical Centre – you have done an amazing job.
“I’ve spoken to dozens of them in Hucknall and thanked them.
"Our care workers, teachers, emergency services, our shop workers – all our key workers in Hucknall you’ve been brilliant.
"Finally, to the residents of Hucknall – thank you for doing your bit by maintaining social distancing and sticking to the rules.”
Coun Zadrozny admitted he would never have believed a year ago, when the Prime Minister announced the first national lockdown, that the country would still be in lockdown 12 months later.
But he said the fact places like Hucknall had coped so well was testament to the community.
He also expressed his pride in the work the council had done to keep delivering vital services to residents.
He continued: "I couldn’t be prouder of how we have continued to deliver every front line service, and additional services on top of that.
"You’ll have heard me say this several times before, but we were the only council to deliver a full waste collection throughout the pandemic.
"On top of this we delivered extra waste campaigns including Skip into Summer, Bag it! and recently the BIG Spring Clean.
"We continue to support business across the district and with the reopening of the high street on the horizon our town centre, business support and environmental health teams are working with businesses to ensure a successful reopening.
“We know how vital our parks and green spaces have been throughout the pandemic.
"We have a £1.8 million parks and green spaces investment programme that is seeing improvements across the district including new play equipment and footpath and access improvements.
“Exercise has become such an important part of our daily lives, and I know from speaking to residents how much you are missing gyms and exercising in our leisure centres.
"Even when closed, our leisure centres have played a key part in the pandemic opening as testing centres.
"There have been some incredible examples of how Ashfield has pulled together with incredible community spirit, but there has also been experiences of great loss.
"In April last year we lost a great councillor to coronavirus, Coun Anthony Brewer, who was a fantastic man and friend.
"To remember all those we have lost to the virus, a memorial stone has been placed in the garden at the King’s Mill hospital entrance of King’s Mill Reservoir.
"As we take the next step on the government’s road map out of lockdown, I can look back on the past year and say that despite the uncertainty, difficulties and loss, I am proud of how our community has pulled together.
"Thank you to everyone that has and continues to go above and beyond.”