About John Baxter

John Baxter Teacher of Religious Education for 25 years and professional photographer for 16 years. Degrees from Rhodes (SA) Oxford and Bristol in Religion, Theology and the Philosophy of Education. Qualified as a Licentiate with the British Institute of Professional Photography. Interests Art, Photography, Religion and the issues it raises, Politics, Poetry, Writing.

Reflections on what I have learnt about Covid-19

How lucky we have been in having among our ANVIL Associates Greg Atkins, former professor of Virology at Trinity College Dublin, who offered, just before Covid-19 appeared at the end of 2019, to give us a talk on his specialism.  He entitled his talk “The Danger Posed by Emerging Virus Infections.” This week, on the 10th of June 2020, backed up by his UTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=19RdLqBMoK4  Greg updated ANVIL and lead us in a discussion of his subject on ZOOM. Continue reading

Monday 11th May. Blog Ends. Zoom Meeting on National Resilience Service Friday 15th May 11 a.m.

Dear ANVIL Associates and other friends,

I have written a short paper (2 sides of A4 which I am told is the most any mover and shaker can be expected to read) putting forward the idea that as we have an NHS we now need an NRS. (to see the paper click on the Politics category) Following this is my final Lock-Down Blog. Continue reading

Sunday 10th May

The weather got very fierce, cold and windy.  Elizabeth’s garden was under threat.  9am Andrew Marr had Dominic Raab stonewalling before the 7pm  address to the nation by Boris.  He looked tired and stressed and spoke as if he was addressing a huge crowd instead of a mike in no 10.  He replaced his key slogans with uncertainties saying that those who could not work at home should return to work without using public transport and that people could drive to take exercise as they wished.  These comments caused uproar as it turned out he had not consulted Nicola Sturgen in Scotland, the Welsh Ist Minister,the trade unions or Keir Starmer. It all added up to sloppy, Tory arrogance and a refusal to consult before announcing national policies.  It pleased no-one and betrayed a refusal to work properly with anyone except his own party.

We stayed in all day and I worked hard rewriting my paper on a National Emergency Service.

Saturday 9th May

The day flew past with reading and sitting in the garden as the sun shone with videos and calls from Rachel and Sarah while we went for another good Stourhead estate walk hoping they will open National Trust  gardens soon.  We await the words of Boris tomorrow. Far more cars on the road today and it feels as if people are letting up on their lock-down behaviour  a bit.

Friday 8th May 75th VE Day.

Beautiful run starts a lovely sunny day. As it wore on so did the significance of VE day. Visited Janet and took Dougle for his walk for the 1st time since lock-down followed by a spaced garden chat with J who seems well and in lively mood.  She told me about when she was a pre-teen.  By mistake the Luftwaffe aiming for Yeovil bombed Sherborne  killing 12 and destroying much of the High Street.  She remembers her GP father found himself treating the German pilot who had bailed out and seeing her sister climb through the rubble carrying her bike.  She was 15 when the war ended and has no memories of VE day.

A strange atmosphere.  Also shot the Rogers family playing war time hits beautifully.. Others were organising spaced out teas so we offered scones and cream and met in our neighbour Stephanie’s garden where we practiced social distancing around the tea, scones and shortbread. Julie joined us.

Cooked roast lamb breast, Really good with a fine Bordeaux wine followed by Captain Tom’s amazing story and an excellent BBC programme on the first VE day with Mrs Windsor at her best.  The BBC really is amazing the way it can both hit just the right note and address the difficulties.