Coronavirus Live Blog: Tuesday, March 17

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Tuesday's live updates, local stories and light relief as Cornwall battles Coronavirus.

Merlin Cinemas closes Cornish cinemas

Cinemas across Cornwall have been closed by the Merlin chain.
The group runs screens in Bodmin, Helston, Redruth, St Ives, Falmouth and Penzance.
They issued a statement on their Facebook page:

At Merlin Cinemas we are committed to providing a safe and healthy environment for our employees and customers.
With this in mind and following government guidelines we have made the difficult decision to shut our cinemas as of the close of business today, Tuesday 17th March, until further notice.
We would like to thank all of our customers and staff for their support recently in these very difficult times.
We plan to have an urgent management meeting tomorrow and will aim to provide a full update within 48 hours.
This will include details regarding advance cinema and theatre bookings.
In the meantime, you can make contact with us using any of our social media platforms or via the email and we will respond as soon as we can.
You can sign up to receive our emails as and when we have updates by signing up
We value our cinema-loving customers and look forward to welcoming you back soon with a fantastic line-up of films.

WTW Cinemas and Scott Cinemas will also be closed from Wednesday, March 18.

Cornish Claire’s Coronavirus video diary DAY 1 PART 2

Claire is in isolation. In this video she gets help with a delivery.

Partial closures at Hayle Academy amid Covid-19 outbreak

Another school in Cornwall has announced partial closures in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

Hayle Academy says it will only be open to Year 7 and Year 11 for the rest of the week, due to high levels of staff absence.

A letter has gone out to parents, apologising for the difficulties caused for families by the decision.


Music festival ‘highly likely’ to be postponed

A Cornish music festival says it is “highly likely” it will be postponed until later in the year as another event becomes a casualty of the coronavirus. 

Tunes in the Dunes, whose headline acts include Richard Ashcroft and Ronan Keating, is due to take place between 1st-3rd May on Perranporth beach. However, in a Facebook post, organisers said that it will probably be postponed until later in the year. 

It comes after advice from the Government and Public Health England which announced on Monday that people are to avoid gatherings and crowded places. 


BREAKING: Royal Cornwall Show postponed due to coronavirus

The Royal Cornwall Show has been postponed because of the coronavirus outbreak.

The Board of Directors of three major agricultural events in the South West – Devon County Show, The Royal Bath & West Show and The Royal Cornwall Show, have announced the postponement of their events due to the increased threat of the spread of Covid-19.


Day 1: Cornish Claire’s video diary

Cornish Claire is in isolation. She’s shocked and confused.

Her family of 4 have been told to stay away from others for 14 days.

Here in her daily video diary, she talks about what she’s going through and shares her story with Pirate FM listeners.

DAY 1 PART 1 Cornish Claire’s Coronavirus video diary

Are you living with Coronavirus or want to tell us about your experiences?

LATEST: Coronavirus in Cornwall -cases rise to 8

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Cornwall has risen to eight.

That is according to the latest data from Public Health England.

But there is no updated statement from Cornwall Council yet.

It has also been confirmed that two Covid-19 patients are currently being treated at Treliske and are in isolation.

RCHT bosses say they are well equipped to deal with the situation and the hospital is “running as normal”.

For more, see the Pirate FM News story here

What happens when zoos close? They take their animals on tours around the zoo

BREAKING NEWS: Staff member at Cornwall school self-isolates

A school in Redruth has said it will remain open after a member of staff has been forced to self-isolate due to the coronavirus outbreak.  

Pennoweth School says it has contacted Public Health England who advised that the school should remain open at this moment in time.

It is after reports that children were being sent home from the school.  

For more, see the Pirate FM news story at here

A new infographic by on March 17, 2020

INFOGRAPHIC: Number of Covid-19 infected in the EU countries

The average age in Europe is the highest in Italy, closely followed by Germany.

A new infographic by shows that Germany and Italy offer the COVID-19 virus an optimal environment.  In Italy, 27.8% of citizens live in highly populated areas, which facilitates the transmission of the virus.

For more, see

What is the advice for travellers?

On March 17, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab released new and stricter travel advice to Brits.

He said UK travellers abroad now face “widespread international border restrictions in various countries”

British nationals are being warned against non essential travel globally for 30 days.

Raab said: “With immediate effect I’ve taken the decision to advise British nationals against non essential travel globally, for an initial period of 30 days and of course subject to ongoing review.”

If you’re planning to travel abroad and are concerned about coronavirus, see advice for travellers on GOV.UK.

Should you be staying at home?

According to the NHS you should stay at home if you have either:

  • a high temperature – you feel hot to touch on your chest or back
  • a new, continuous cough – this means you’ve started coughing repeatedly

Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.


Free resources to help your children learn from home

With schools closing around the world and the possibility of closures in the UK, the company Twinkl have offered codes to be able to access their complete collection of learning resources for free for one month.

This is great news for parents and students with thousands of resources to download, print or complete online. 

To take advantage of this great offer, find the code for your country and head to their website using this link

Then sign up and enter the code.


Ways of making the Coronavirus more bearable #73

These are dark and scary times – but it’s times like these we have to find a little light and levity.

What should I do if I have asthma?

COVID-19 is a respiratory infection.
People with underlying lung conditions might be more likely to show symptoms of the infection or to have a more severe reaction than others.

To reduce your risk of symptoms, Asthma UK says the best action you can take is to follow these simple asthma management steps:

  • Keep taking your preventer inhaler daily as prescribed.
    This will help cut your risk of an asthma attack being triggered by any respiratory virus, including coronavirus.
  • Carry your reliever inhaler (usually blue) with you every day, in case you feel your asthma symptoms flaring up.
  • Download and use an asthma action plan to help you recognise and manage asthma symptoms when they come on.
  • Start a peak flow diary, if you have a peak flow meter. If you don’t have a peak flow meter, think about getting one from your GP or pharmacist, as it can be a good way of tracking your asthma and helping to tell the difference between asthma symptoms and COVID-19 symptoms. It can also help your medical team to assess you over the phone or video.
  • If you come down with flu, a cold, or any other respiratory infection, follow our tips for looking after your asthma when you’re not well.
  • If you smoke it’s vital to quit now as smoking will increase your risk from COVID-19. There’s NHS advice on how to give up smoking here.

If you have severe asthma 

Severe asthma is asthma that is hard to treat, and often the symptoms are not well controlled, even with high doses of medicines.

Having severe asthma is likely to put you at higher risk of complications from COVID-19. The NHS will contact you from the 23rd March to tell you what to do if you are in this higher-risk group. For now, you should follow the advice above, and try to be extra careful about avoiding unnecessary contact with other people.

For more information, see the Asthma UK website

How to avoid catching and spreading coronavirus

Okay let’s start by going over some key basics:

  • wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
  • always wash your hands when you get home or into work
  • use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
  • cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
  • avoid close contact with people who have symptoms of coronavirus
  • only travel on public transport if you need to
  • work from home, if you can
  • avoid social activities, such as going to pubs, restaurants, theatres and cinemas
  • avoid events with large groups of people
  • use phone, online services, or apps to contact your GP surgery or other NHS services
  • do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean
  • do not have visitors to your home, including friends and family

(Source: NHS)

Welcome to Pirate’s Coronavirus SUPERBLOG!

We’ll be bringing you live updates, local stories and light relief as Cornwall battles Coronavirus.
And don’t miss Cornish Claire’s video diary as she talks us through her experience of living in isolation.

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