As the nation prepares to mark the 75th anniversary of VE Day, I want to recognise our own WW2 veterans here in Croydon, and their comrades who are sadly no longer with us, but never forgotten.
As an entire generation, their strength and sacrifice secured the freedom we have often taken for granted and as Colonel Tom has demonstrated, they remain an example and an inspiration to us all.
Their contribution resonates with us perhaps more than ever today, as we battle our own invisible enemy, and I hope it helps us all to strengthen our own resolve.
So while we may be unable to come together in person to celebrate our veterans on this historic occasion, they will be in all our thoughts and in our hearts this weekend.
I know I will be joined by households across Croydon tomorrow in observing the two-minute silence tomorrow at 11am, in raising a glass for the nation’s toast at 3pm and in watching Croydon Minster’s VE Day service online over this bank holiday weekend.
I look forward to marking the occasion with you all virtually, if not in person, and I hope we can all take comfort in VE Day as a powerful reminder that even in the darkest of times, light will come again.
Covid-19 – the next phase
With the government expected to announce on Sunday plans to ease some of the social distancing restrictions, locally we are continuing to work hard to prepare for the next phase.
First and foremost, we are continuing our support for the most vulnerable, through our dedicated Covid-19 helpline, and by working with voluntary sector groups boroughwide to help thousands of residents in need.
We also continue to help those who have lost their livelihoods or had them seriously impacted by Covid-19, helping them to access training and employment.
And we are still working hard for our businesses in our town centre and districts across the borough, helping them to access their government grants and our own package of support while representing their interests at national level, so that when this is over, we are ready to welcome people back into Croydon.
And as I’m sure you will be pleased to hear, we are also preparing for how we might begin to reopen some of our council facilities that are currently closed, such as household refuse and recycling sites, and we hope to be able to share some of the details on these, and other measures, soon.
Until then, I hope you all stay safe, and well, and have a peaceful bank holiday weekend.
Councillor Tony Newman, leader of the council