OLI SCARFF / AFP
A note announces the closure of a London store for Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral on September 19.
UNITED KINGDOM – Doors closed, curtains drawn, and Britons angry. After the death of Queen Elizabeth II on September 8the British government announced that on Monday 19 September, day of his funeralwould be a public holiday UK. And it is the whole country that risks being stopped, or at least very greatly slowed down. The events cultural and sports are mostly cancelled, companies are encouraging their employees to stay at home and even essential services such as medical centers will be on the soft pedal.
Thus, many health establishments have announced the cancellation of care “non-emergency”. “Some non-urgent planned care appointments/procedures in Bedfordshire hospitals will be postponed. We will contact all affected patients if their appointment or procedure needs to be rescheduled.”indicates for example this hospital center in a communicated. Assuring, however, that hospitals will remain open for emergencies.
GP surgeries and most pharmacies and dentists will also be closed. Those in need of a prescription are encouraged to make an appointment in advance, details a BBC article.
Monitoring of pregnancies or for deferred cancers
Some Britons are indignant that care certainly “non-emergency” but essential for the follow-up of patients are postponed. Especially since these postponements or cancellations sometimes concern surgeries, pregnancy checks, or even follow-ups for cancer.
A Briton, for example, tells on Twitter that an appointment concerning his wife’s breast cancer has been canceled. “ I’m sure she’ll be fine, but it’s a wait that will most certainly cost lives. This is an obscenity, in the name of the monarchy,” he wrote in a message posted on his account and relayed by Release.
wife’s breast cancer appointment canceled Monday, which means all breast cancer appointments are canceled on Mond… https://t.co/9NZQabjvpy
A 23-year-old woman, Dan O’Brien, also confided her anxieties to NBC News when her appointment at a specialist maternity hospital was canceled due to the funeral. She has type 1 diabetes and her pregnancy is considered high risk. “When they called me to tell me that all the appointments for the day were cancelled, I hung up the phone and cried”she says.
The medical profession is just as angry at these cancellations deemed aberrant. On Twitter, a nurse says to herself “more than furious with those who decided that clinics and planned surgeries had to be canceled on Monday. » She also reminds us that clinic or surgery appointments are made months in advance, and that patients will again have to wait weeks for another appointment.
As a nurse working in the NHS as a community nurse, I am beyond furious with whoever decided that clinics and plann… https://t.co/XNf2egD3XL
— Karen Parry (@KarenPa25006639)
Food banks asked to close shop
The funeral of Queen Elizabeth II also leads to the closure of some food banks. The Irish News shares message from Church of Ireland minister, Reverend Loney, urging closure of food bank for “those who (…) regard the death of the monarch as an important event to be marked with the deepest respect. »
Some argue that they have to close because they always do on public holidays, and that they operate largely thanks to volunteers. But the food bank in Wimbledon, south London, changed its tune on Wednesday, as noted by AFP. “ Thanks to tremendous support, we now have volunteers to open Monday as usual,” can be read on its website.
These services are not the only ones to reduce the sails on this last day of mourning in memory of the deceased queen. After already canceling some flights on Wednesday when the Queen’s coffin was moved through London to rest, Heathrow Airport, one of the world’s busiest transit hubs, has also warned of disruptions “to ensure silence” during the funeral.
On social networks, the British were also worried about the shutdown of all funeral services in the United Kingdom. A rumor quickly denied by the press agency Associated Press. Although some families choose to postpone or reschedule Monday services, and some businesses offering funeral or cremation services may close on that day, “many funerals should take place”several funeral industry groups confirmed to the agency.
“Too much mourning? »
On the side of culture and entertainment too, tourists will not have a plethora of activities to entertain themselves. All street performances have been suspended in London, according to information from NBCfor “maximize space for large crowds mourning the monarch”.
But the big recent controversy was sparked by the reaction of holiday company Center Parcs when it announced to its customers that it would kick them out of its sites on Monday at 10 a.m. ” respect for the Queen’s funeral. She then tried to catch up by explaining that they could stay but only inside their accommodation. The ire of customers finally forced Center Parcs to backpedal and welcome some of its customers, those who will be in the middle of their stay, reports the British site. MyLondon.
All these cancellations, which greatly disturb the privacy of the British, are causing weariness among part of the population. “Too much mourning? » wonders This article from NBC, because some Britons find the price to pay for these ten days of mourning in honor of their monarch too heavy. The latest surveys show that the British are divided on the issue. A YouGov poll published on September 13 showed that 49% of those polled felt that media coverage of the Queen’s funeral was “excessive”while 41% found it “about right”.
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