'Helping the masses' - Norfolk figureheads urge public to get jab
- Credit: Archant/Norfolk County Council/Sue Dent
Rollout of the coronavirus vaccine is continuing at an impressive pace, with almost half of Norfolk and Waveney's adults having received their first dose already.
In fact, the area now has the fifth-highest vaccination rate in the country.
There are, however, still thousands of people who remain unsure about getting a jab, or have already ruled it out entirely.
Now, six Norfolk figureheads have shared their experiences of receiving the vaccine, and are encouraging those who are reluctant about getting a jab to join the national effort.
Sir Norman Lamb, former North Norfolk MP and mental health campaigner
"Getting a vaccine is important for our personal safety and security, but also to keep others safe, whether it be friends, family or the wider community.
"This is a pandemic that we will only defeat together, and there is a need for all of us to take steps to protect ourselves.
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"Of course our tradition is very much not to force people to do things, but encouragement is clearly important.
"I am conscious that the take-up is lower among some groups, and I understand the anxieties and fears, but it is crucial we all take this up.
"For me, there was a slight feeling of bruising for a short while, but that was it. A week on I physically feel absolutely fine, and personally quite relieved to have got it."
Lady Georgina Roberts, the High Sheriff of Norfolk
"I turned up slightly early for my jab, as I like to do.
"The whole thing was very well organised. Everyone was courteous, helpful and the jab itself was not painful. Everyone was in the spirit of trying to do things really well.
"I thoroughly endorse the idea of vaccinations. For me, I consider the Covid jab an extension of other jabs I've had over the course of my life, or when you go abroad.
"The simple science is that, throughout our lives, we pick up all sorts of things, but our bodies find a way to deal with them. This vaccine is what we need for our bodies to deal with coronavirus.
"I hope people can see this as extending their bodies' ability to cope and therefore protecting themselves - and in doing so you will be helping the masses."
Keith Kiddie, chairman of Norfolk County Council
"I went down to Bury St Edmunds for my vaccine and it was magnificently efficient.
"The staff were great and I must have gone through the process in less than half an hour.
"It didn't hurt and I've had no after-effects. When you get to my age you have already had all manner of vaccinations, anyway. It was no more trouble than going for a regular flu jab.
"Let's be honest - if you look through history, the way we have managed to get on top of these things is vaccination programmes. We have managed to effectively deal with all sorts of things and this is the same.
"Until the vast bulk of the population has been vaccinated, we are going to be stuck in limbo. Please, go and get your jab."
Lady Philippa Dannatt, Lord-Lieutenant of Norfolk
"I was fortunate enough to get a call from my local surgery a few weeks ago, and it was my lovely GP.
"They said 'Pippa, can you get down here straight away? I have a spare dose.
"I was dressed in a flash, down to the surgery and back home less than 15 minutes later.
"I consider it such a privilege. My attention is caught by those in the world’s poorest countries who are so much less privileged than us and don't have the same access."
Andrew Proctor, leader of Norfolk County Council
“My appointment was for 9.30am on a Saturday morning at Castle Quarter, where I was promptly shown into the socially-distanced waiting room by volunteers.
"I was then taken to the assessment area where the whole procedure was explained, including the type of vaccine being given.
"I was told the vaccine is ‘just a little scratch’, but didn’t feel a thing and I was back to my car by 10.10am.
"Nothing could have been easier and the whole system worked extremely well. I had no side-effects or pain.
"It doesn’t take long and everyone who gets vaccinated is doing their bit to get us out of lockdown and stop the spread of the virus.”
Steve Morphew, leader of the Norfolk Labour Group
"My jab was impressively efficient and painless. The NHS staff were wonderful and explained everything.
"The very mild side-effects soon passed, and told me the process of protecting me had started.
"I couldn’t be happier with how it went and can’t say thank you enough to the NHS for the brilliant way the vaccine is being rolled out.
"Those who have been hesitating should be reassured by now that the vaccine is safe and will help keep us safe. It’s a great feeling knowing that, by making yourself safer, you’re also helping keep others safe too."