Leader of the council 'not optimistic' about a speedy return to normal after Buckinghamshire declares 'major incident'

Martin Tett, leader of The Buckinghamshire CouncilMartin Tett, leader of The Buckinghamshire Council
Martin Tett, leader of The Buckinghamshire Council
Leader of the council Martin Tett urged people to stick to the rules

Council leader Martin Tett has said that he is 'not optimistic' about a speedy return to normal for Bucks, the day after the county declared a 'major incident'.

Speaking to The Bucks Herald, Mr Tett said that people must take Tier Four measures seriously, and that even with a vaccine roll out he thinks it will be months before restrictions can be lifted in the county.

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He said: "I am not optimistic about this being weeks, I think we are talking about months.

"The Oxford vaccine is really good news, but there now has to be a roll out, and I think we are looking at June or July before we see any kind of return to normal. It's best to think the worst and hope for the best."

And when asked what he thought of the Government's response to the pandemic, the leader, who is Conservative, added: "At the start of the year the World Health Organization said that this wasn't a serious pandemic, but things changed, we had the lockdown and in August we saw some relaxation. Now it has changed again.

"This is a constantly changing story, and I am actually quite supportive of what the Government has done, they have had a really difficult job on their hands."

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And so has Mr Tett, at that start of the year he was preparing his shadow authority to form a council, after district councils and the county council were abolished as part of a cost saving and streamlining Unitary authority.

This work has had to carry on, but with a pressing backdrop of the Covid-19 crisis, and staff off sick or working from home.

This week Covid-19 has killed 465 people in Buckinghamshire, and thousands more have been affected by lockdowns which have complicated and stopped work and education.

Speaking about the impact on the county Mr Tett added: "There are two sides to the pandemic, the health side and the business side.

"Buckinghamshire is a county of small businesses and many people have been affected, losing their livilhoods and their homes.

"We must not play down the seriousness of this side of it."