Issue 147    Sept 1st   to December 1st 2020

It still pays to keep alert !

So the phone rings and it goes like this…….Good morning, I’m calling from the NHS track and trace service. According to our system, you are likely to have been in close proximity to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. This means that you now need to self-isolate for 7 days and take a COVID-19 test.’

‘OK. Can you tell me who that person was?’ 

I‘m not able to tell you that. That is confidential information.’

‘Right. Um… so ….’  But you do need to be tested within the next 72 hours. So can I just get the best mailing address so that we can send a kit to you?’   ‘Ok (gives address)’

‘Thank you – and I just need to take a payment card so that we can finalize this and send the kit to you.’      ‘Sorry – a payment card? I thought this was all free?’

‘No – I’m afraid not. There is a one-off fee of £50 for the kit and test results. Could you read off the long card number for me, please, when you’re ready.’

‘No – that’s not right. This is part of the NHS so there’s no charge.’   ‘I’m afraid there is. Can you give me the card number please – this is very important, and there are penalties for not complying.’                         Puts the phone down.                               

This is how scammers work. And vulnerable people will fall for it.”


Friday July 31st saw the winding-down of the Hungerford Self-Isolation Support Network. Since inception a week before lockdown, over 200 rapidly-assembled volunteers have been shopping and helping out more than 300 households. Tesco granted us priority access to assist our frequent shoppers to help those in isolation. 1st Direct Taxis took many individuals to surgery and hospital appointments, all FOC. West Berks Food Bank has been wonderfully supportive. We arranged a daily collection service at Boots and our “mules” delivered over 800 prescription drugs.

Happily, the phones have been very quiet for well over a month. The vast majority of residents and volunteers are now back at work, and/or out & about more or less as usual. CHAIN is back on the road to get their regular clients to & from the shops, appointments and so on. The “Boot-phone” for our amateur drug-delivery service has been turned off and Boots in town are kindly operating a private courier for those that used our service previously. Quietly, behind the scenes, we are still shopping for about 50 existing “clients” and will continue as the need prevails.

We all hope the worst is over, but if the virus comes back – we’ll be back!

Geordie Taylor Hungerford

Mr Harold North passed away on Sunday 2nd August aged 92 he was a “Hungerford Man” born and bred, at one time of the eleven men playing football for Hungerford ten were North’s one of them being Harold. 

After leaving the navy he worked as a bricklayer and in 1955 with his brother Bob purchased a plot of land in Priory Road from Dodd’s Market Gardens where they built for themselves two homes which they both lived in for the rest of their lives. 

Both Harold and Bob were employed by local firm J.T.Gibbs and together built many of the houses that the people of Hungerford are living in today.