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Isle of Man carollers enjoy their splendid isolation

29 December 2020

Facebook/Manx Concert Brass

MORE than 500 people have enjoyed a zero-distanced carol service in what was probably one of the largest gatherings in the British Isles for Christmas 2020.

The service was held at Kirk Braddan, near Douglas, on the Isle of Man, where there are few coronavirus restrictions. The Vicar of Kirk Braddan, the Revd Daniel Richards, said that he hoped it would offer “a light in the darkness” to those affected by the pandemic.

There have been a total of 374 cases of Covid-19 on the island since March, and 25 deaths, but strict border controls and isolation rules allowed nearly all restrictions to be lifted in June, and life has returned to almost normal. There are currently just three cases of the illness on the island, and the sufferers are self-isolating. The spread is not classed as uncontrolled community transmission.

Mr Richards said that the service on 20 December had been a chance for people to reflect on how fortunate they were to be in this position. “We need to just be grateful for that, to make the most of what we have, while also remembering all of those people who can’t be in that position.”

A recording of the service was broadcast online on Boxing Day. Mr Richards said: “Hopefully, it’s a signal to not give up for those people who aren’t able to experience these things: actually hold on, because these things will come back.”

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