Today, in partnership with Visit Somerset and Visit Exmoor, Somerset County Council’s Public Health department is launching a new campaign thanking Somerset residents and visitors for adhering to the Covid-19 guidance and encouraging them to keep doing so.
Along with vaccinations, there are many things people can do to keep themselves and each other safe from Covid-19. This includes regular coronavirus testing, isolating when required and following the Covid-19 guidance around hands, face, space and fresh air.
The launch of the campaign comes as the government announced a delay in moving to Step 4 of the roadmap amid rising cases of the Delta variant. Prime Minister Boris Johnson is set to make a decision on the easing of restrictions by 19 July, when there will be a “very considerable wall of immunity around the whole of the population”.
However, people are and will continue to travel into and around the county under current freedoms and it is of utmost importance to communicate safety messages to people in a way that they will respond to – especially in light of rising cases.
The campaign will be widespread across the county and will be seen on digital platforms as well as billboards, bus stops, service stations and on the back of buses. The aim of the campaign is to empower residents and visitors while encouraging them to keep up all the great work as we move towards more freedoms.
Professor Trudi Grant, Director of Public Health for Somerset County Council, said: “As we approach the main holiday season, and with the latest announcement stating many of the current restrictions will stay in place a little longer, I’m sure we’d all like a break from Covid-19. Unfortunately, Covid-19 isn’t taking a holiday.
“We do want everyone to be able to enjoy summer but, in light of the rises we are seeing in cases locally and nationally, we must do this safely.”
Professor Grant added: “In Somerset, we are still in a pretty good position with a relatively low number of cases compared to other parts of the country, but they are creeping up. I would encourage everyone to get on board with our campaign, keep up the great work with the safety measures such as hands, face, space and regular testing, and please, when you are invited, step forward for your vaccination”.
John Turner, Chief Executive of Visit Somerset, said: “When we welcome visitors to the county of Somerset we want to make sure that they are all reassured and feel genuinely supported. We are delighted to be working with Public Health Somerset in supporting this vital communications campaign at this time.”
Emma Thomasson, Chief Executive of Visit Exmoor, said: “All of our area businesses have been working hard to deliver a warm Exmoor welcome to visitors this summer. We want our visitors and communities to safely enjoy everything our area has to offer and take away memories of their wonderful Exmoor experience.
“This Somerset County Council Public Health campaign supports us all in communicating our appreciation to our communities and visitors for following safe practices, enables our visitor economy businesses to communicate these to their visitors, and provides related clarification and helpful information.”
The second phase of campaign will run from Monday 19 July pending further announcements on the easing of restrictions.