One only has to walk down the local high street to sense the lack of life that was once there. The rise of home deliveries for whatever a household needs, supports, and sometimes necessitates, a ‚’stay at home mentality‚’. The longer term effects will include a reduction in the ‚’sense of area‚’ that people live in and a lack of connection to what could be on the doorstep. An individual‚’s physical and mental health could also deteriorate.
Contributing factors include:-
Many small businesses that can be found on local high streets have struggled to survive and are already closed. Others are hanging on by a thread.
For local shops that are open, outside queues are frequent. But actual connections are infrequently made.
At the same time people have developed habits of staying at home and not using the local services that are open. A fear of going out has developed in some people.
Government assistance has provided much needed financial support for some local businesses but there are many examples of where this has not been enough.
Humans congregate in areas ‚’ they always have and probably always will. These areas are given distinct names and create a character of their own. The difference between say Wimbledon and Peckham in Greater London is significant. Yet both have the potential to lose some of their identity if the habits that have grown as a result of Covid-19 are not broken.
This is a challenge that needs some solutions so that local areas thrive in a post pandemic environment.