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(101 Posts)
Boats Sat 18-Apr-20 19:05:17

I totally agree with Monica, Susan56, Quercus, Chewbacca and others who write in a similar vein. If the neighbour's actions are not directly harming you then leave them to it.
What sort of a society have we become that we are driven to pry and spy on our neighbours and other people? Their actions will sadly come home to them without your "help".
Who would you report them to? The Police?
Just take a look at the video of an officer in the Lancs. Police Force and ask yourself if this is what you want.
Far more worrying to me is the lack of social distancing in shops and supermarkets. Yesterday, when out shopping for my neighbours in my local supermarket, one young woman with 2 kids in tow thought it quite ok to lean almost on top of me to reach for something on the shelf above me! What could I do about that? Nothing, except remind her very loudly to keep her distance. Her response...a silly grin. Now that sort of idiocy is certain to cause the spread of this dreadful virus, more so, probably than your neighbours visiting their family members and yes, you don't know the circumstances behind those visits. So please, let's get a bit of common sense here. Bluenose, if your neighbour's visitors haven't jumped in your garden or invaded your house you probably aren't likely to be at much risk of catching this virus. I wish I could say the same for myself after yesterday's incident!

Boats Sat 18-Apr-20 19:09:39

Further to my previous message. I do not condone people visiting their relatives but neither can I condone spying and reporting. Sorry, there has to be another way.

MissAdventure Sat 18-Apr-20 19:13:56

I haven't seen anyone here say they have spied or reported.
People have discussed it, but I'm not sure anyone has taken that step.

Tangerine Sat 18-Apr-20 19:16:33

I think I agree with you. You don't always know the circumstances or health of the people they are visiting.

As I said on another thread, I have seen things in my road which seem really wrong from a distancing point of view but I hardly know the people concerned and have no idea whether or not they have ill health.

I must admit, if I had neighbours enjoying a big family BBQ, I'd be annoyed and feel like reporting them but I wouldn't do so. After all, if they're good neighbours in other ways, who wants to fall out?

Personally I am being careful to completely follow lockdown and so are members of my family plus all my friends.

ValerieF Sat 18-Apr-20 20:29:47

Hear Hear Boats! Totally agree. Some people are being castigated on here for carrying out social distancing in the way they find appropriate or necessary, such as someone in her communal garden, keeping the social distancing, being mindful of the rules, but these same people are probably going out shopping when social distancing is very much in the hands (no pun intended) of other people? Why not just keep doing our own bit and stop worrying what our neighbours are doing?

eazybee Sat 18-Apr-20 20:41:09

We are all conditioned to reach over people for items we need when shopping and I am sure the harassed mother with two children did not do it intentionally; she was probably thinking how quickly can I get this done and get us all back home safely.

Apparently the government thinks we have responded far better to lickdown (oops!) than they anticipated; they certainly don't want a police state, and people here aren't as stupid as the protesters in America.

vampirequeen Sat 18-Apr-20 20:45:57

You're right eazybee. Social distancing isn't a habit and she probably just forgot. After all she was busy shopping with two children in tow. No one is perfect.

annsixty Sat 18-Apr-20 21:02:15

Both my D, shopping for herself and her C and my S, shopping for his family, have reported being happy to queue for 20/30 minutes to get into a supermarket but finding once in, no distancing has taken place.
People reach over, pick things up and put them back on the shelves and jostle every where except outside and at at the till.
This encompasses, Sainsbury’s, Aldi and Waitrose.
Not enough is being observed or policed by the management.

absent Sat 18-Apr-20 21:12:38

People tend to revert to their normal shopping routine once they are in the supermarket, having queued outside at the appropriate distance in a perfectly patient and usually cheerful manner. Now in our fourth week of a pretty strict lockdown in New Zealand, I have noticed that almost everyone seems to be much more careful about keeping their distance, not reaching over other shoppers, waiting until someone has moved away from the shelf they want before approaching it and watching out for shopping trolleys crossing aisles or turning corners. It does take time to unlearn well-established old habits.

jenpax Sat 18-Apr-20 21:24:13

I must say the majority of shoppers in my local Sainsburys are really good inside the store and wait at the ends of aisles or go to the side when passing.
I am especially careful and constantly vigilant, as I have had my spleen removed (so am at greater risk), and DD3 with whom I am in lock down, is a type 1 Diabetic so also vulnerable.
However a couple of times I have had a shopper blocking the aisle with their trolley in the middle, and then brushing past as they have moved on instead of keeping to one side and a few people have leaned over me to reach things on high shelves! I must say they were all middle aged or elderly men so I wonder if they forget the rules!

Sussexborn Sat 18-Apr-20 21:50:37

My concern was partly for the children in the garden. Much too young to make an informed choice but at risk of this potentially life threatening disease. Also the neighbour socialising then serving in a shop selling food and touching each item as it passes through her till.

Of course it affects us all. The longer they continue ignoring the rules the longer we will have to isolate for. They are also placing extra and unnecessary strain on the NHS staff risking effecting them too.

I presume their “ right” to be self centred and endanger others takes precedence over the health and well being of the rest of us. Ridiculous!

Sussexborn Sat 18-Apr-20 21:57:50


BlueBelle Sat 18-Apr-20 22:26:31

Oh just let’s all worry about ourselves and that we do it right
I ve found everybody I ve encounter on my solo walks very respectful and all the trades people too
Can’t we think talk or eat anything but this bloody virus

Hetty58 Sat 18-Apr-20 23:19:24

Sussexborn, spot on. MissAdventure, I have reported (not spied) and clearly admitted to it on GN - it's my civic duty.

Again, I'm asking 'Would you ignore a speeding drunk driver racing in your street?'

Why (oh why) are people so rigid and stuck in their ways?

Normally, I'm not a snitch.

We are not in a normal situation - not at all!

Tangerine, there is no danger of 'falling out' as the police will not reveal who reported them.

My neighbours are in their 70s. He has diabetes. She has a heart condition. They do their own shopping, twice a week, as always as they like to 'choose their own things'.

They drive there and go in separate shops. They've said they'll 'take their chances' with CV.

(I just despair)

They've had several parties in their garden during lockdown. Their grandchildren, great grandchildren and friends all visit together.

They have noisy barbeques and fireworks.

The opinions of neighbours are that they are loudly defiant of lockdown (and taking the pee).

You just phone 101 (UK non-emergency police) and they will visit for a 'chat'. They don't instantly arrest or fine people for a first offence. It's just a warning.

Unless you live in the middle of nowhere with only one neighbour - your report is anonymous. The police phoned back to say I was only one of several complainants.

What I really struggle to fathom is:

'What on Earth are the friends (so called) and grandchildren thinking of? Any thoughts?

Doodledog Sun 19-Apr-20 01:30:08

I agree. I find it quite alarming that so many people have become incredibly hung up on ever-changing 'rules' in such a short space of time. Sometimes it is their own interpretation of the rules that that want to impose on everyone else, and the cries of 'report them' are reminiscent of the Stasi.

On social media (and I know that local Facebook pages aren't usually known for their tolerance and general bonhomie) all someone has to do is post that a neighbour was rude to a shop assistant, or had a shopping delivery they 'didn't need', and the pile-on starts. No evidence is required, but the 'culprits' are vilified and there are calls for them to be 'named and shamed', or banned from local shops. If old scores aren't being settled here, I'd be more than surprised.

So many people are claiming to know personal details about others. I am staying indoors because I have chosen to do so, and several people have commented that I must be on the 'self-isolate' list because of my asthma, or come to another (wrong) conclusion about either me or my husband. I'm not, and it is, frankly, none of their business what I do. In my case, the comments are from friends on the telephone, but people are making similar judgements on strangers. Since when was doctor/patient confidentiality scrapped, and people expected to reveal their medical records to neighbours?

Similarly, I have seen comments about people who aren't clapping on Thursdays. Surely an appreciation stops being such if people are forced to do it, whether by law or fear of social sanctions? Who do the enforcers think they are? (and for the record I have been clapping)

If someone is directly affecting you, by refusing to stay more than 2 metres away from you, or coughing near you, then of course you should do something about it to protect yourself. If they are driving to exercise (which is, incidentally, perfectly legal, if the time taken to drive is less than the time exercising), or stopping to eat a snack mid-walk (again, perfectly legal), that is up to them, so ignore it. If they are rude in a shop, maybe report it to security if warranted, or offer to back up the assistant, but witch-hunts on Facebook are spiteful and potentially defamatory without evidence.

I often see comments on the lines of 'Why should I do X when they aren't doing it?', or 'I would love to see my family, so it's not fair that they are seeing theirs'. These feelings are understandable, but they don't suggest that the motive for wanting to report people is genuinely for the public good - it is more a feeling that someone else is getting away with something that the poster isn't.

I know we are all stressed, but we do have to get on with one another when this is all over.

Doodledog Sun 19-Apr-20 01:30:49

Oh for an edit button! I meant that I agree with the OP.

Hetty58 Sun 19-Apr-20 01:48:53


'they don't suggest that the motive for wanting to report people is genuinely for the public good'

Don't you realise that these morons could be spreading the virus everywhere they go. People are most infectious before they get any symptoms. They could potentially kill many people. We therefore have a duty to report them.

vampirequeen Sun 19-Apr-20 06:35:30

Although they're not following the government guidance and can be fined they're not committing any crime.

PamelaJ1 Sun 19-Apr-20 06:41:58

I have a large garden. One side is relatively unused. It houses a trampoline and has a shed where the tennis racquets and other sporting equipment is kept.
We haven’t touched the trampoline or sports stuff for months.

Our DD and family live under 2 miles away. They have a tiny garden. They could easily come here, as part of their exercise, play in our ‘spare’ garden, wave to us in the house and do nobody any harm. We could leave the gate open so they wouldn’t need to touch it.

They don’t because as a family we play by the rules. I can see, however, why some people wouldn’t. Not saying it’s right, just see where they may be coming from.

Neighbours, seeing them come down our drive couldn’t know that we weren’t coming into contact could they?

lemongrove Sun 19-Apr-20 07:48:54

Doodledog...that’s a really good post smile
It’s fascinating from a psychology angle, just what is happening at the moment, from those observing the social distancing laws rigorously against those observing them in a lax way or not at all.Makes what happened ( and what still happens in some countries) more understandable ( betraying neighbours to the authorities.)

lemongrove Sun 19-Apr-20 07:49:38

Just to add...understandable but very unpleasant!

M0nica Sun 19-Apr-20 08:25:57

PamelaJ1 What you suggest is entirely legal under the 'clarification' issued a couple of days ago.

It seems you are more worried about 'what the neighbours would think' Neighbours, seeing them come down our drive couldn’t know that we weren’t coming into contact could they? Go ahead and let the neighbours think what they like.

We have had two workmen working in our garden since shut down, one to repair our fence, specifically allowed, and our regular lawn treatment team, in and out in under an hour, and, at sometime in the next few weeks, our local builder is coming in to do work on a workshop at the end of our long garden. He will come in the side entrance, walk up the garden and be in the shed for a couple of days. He lives down the road, so will go home if he needs the loo. He will not come near us nor the house. We may not even see him or notice he is there. I cannot see how that breaches the regulations.

A disabled friend still has her gardener coming in and pays him by BACS. There is no contact between them, beyond a wave from a window.

PamelaJ1 Sun 19-Apr-20 08:31:28

I’m not worried about MY neighbours MOnica. I was just pointing out that not all neighbours have the full story.

M0nica Sun 19-Apr-20 08:52:10

Hetty58 I disagree, because one of the things we have completely lost recently is our perception of risk. If you live in the centre of a big city, where most of the cases are, you need to be very careful indeed. Even more so if you live in a care home, where by definition you will be old and have health problems and be exceptionally vulnerable to the disease and its complications, but in many parts of the country, expecially rural parts, the number of cases are few and the risk of getting te virus much much lower.

With children, so far only 8 have died, less than would probably have died in road accidents, were it not for the lock down. The evidence is also that few have been diagnosed with virus, suggesting that they are low risk of getting the illness or carrying it. So if the children across the road come and play with the children next door, when both familys are in lock down, the risk is minute. They are probably more likely to fall off the climbing frame and break an arm.

When I go for a walk and come to a style or gate, I walk through it touching it or not. I live in a rural area, the incidence of the virus in our area is low and the vast majority of people are obeying the rules. I am probably in greater danger of tripping over my shoelaces or a root I didn't see and breaking a wrist or ankle than I am of picking up the virus.

My response would be based on my perception of the risk their infraction actually was. For the neighbours children, very low. If I lived in a block of flats in central London or similar and the children and family were taking every risk and touching everything in communal areas, I probably would.

Hetty58 Sun 19-Apr-20 09:15:16

M0nica, our perceptions of risk obviously differ. Here, in Greater London, (edge of Essex) it's weirdly silent, except we hear and see a lot of ambulances when we're out.