17 March

Prime Minister Johnson has advised against anyone going to theaters, restaurants, clubs or pubs. This makes people in the entertainment and hospitality business very angry, as it effectively puts them out of business (no-one will come) while absolving the government of responsibility.

Wardrobe, Folk House and St Georges are officially closed; Old Vic and Tobbaco factory following suit. Hippodrome also closing for the duration but no-one in their right mind would go to the Hippodrome anyway. The Forum in Bath seems to be holding out, but Clannad have already said they are not going. Bristol Folk Festival not officially cancelled yet but acts mostly assuming they aren't going. Gaz Brookfield (who famously has diabetes) first to cancel his tour but says that he will be doing "live from the lock down" on line shows.

Library still open, but largely devoid of customers. Everyone washing their hands every few minutes and attempting to wipe down surfaces and keyboards used by members of the public. All clubs and special events indefinitely cancelled. I don't see how we can possibly maintain social distancing -- can't both help a customer operate a computer and stay two and half meters away from him. The people who come to use are computers are by definition people who don't have computers and really need them. Job and Benefit applications have to be done on line nowadays.

Shops mostly okay. No pasta or rice to be had for love nor money, but bread, milk vegetables and meat okay. I even saw some toilet paper. Soap a bit of a problem, what with all the hand washing everyone is doing. Happy to say I saw no rioting or misbehavior; if anything everyone more than usually pleasant. Gave five pounds to a homeless person which is entirely unlike me.

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