Bill Giles warns UK public to 'watch out' as hayfever season begins during Covid pandemic

Meteorologist Bill Giles, 81, has warned UK residents to be vigilant as we head into hayfever season while the coronavirus pandemic is still on-going and very much present. He worried that the sneezing and coughing that comes from the seasonal allergic reaction to pollen, might transmit partials through the air from one person to another, therefore spreading the virus further and perhaps quicker.
As the UK looks towards freedom on 21 June following Boris Johnson’s announcement last week, with shops, businesses and hospitality sectors allowed to open at specific dates before then, Bill wanted to make sure members of the public stay safe as we had into spring and summer.

In a recent interview, he said: “As the days grow longer and the sun gets higher in the sky, tree pollen will increase.

“We know Covid is transmitted through the air and the 29 March lifting of restrictions will unfortunately coincide with the start of peak hayfever season.”

Bill added: “We all want to meet family and friends, but watch out for those sneezes!”

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“And don’t doubt that there will more hot springs ahead.”

Now the roadmap to recovery has been provisionally put into place (subject to change), Bill can get back to talking about what he knows best – the weather.

And as we head into the warmer months of the year, people will depend solely on the weather to give them a new lease of life, what with normality slowly returning and being able to meet friends and family for walks and picnics outside.

“Nearly all the things we are looking forward to doing again as lockdown gradually lifts are dependent on the weather,” he told Radio Times.

“But going for walks and meeting people – especially your grandchildren if, like me, you’re a little older – or simply meeting friends for drinks in a beer garden won’t be much fun if it’s pouring with rain.”

He also admitted he’s looking forward to 12 April, when hairdresser and barbers are set to open their doors, as he’s been struggling to enjoy watching weather forecasts as the BBC weather presenters currently look like “shaggy sheepdogs”.

The 81-year-old retired TV forecaster continued: “I don’t know about you, but this will become easier for me to enjoy from 12 April when barbers open again and some of the BBC weather presenters who now look like shaggy sheepdogs will be allowed to have their hair cut.

“Then we’ll be able to see their eyes again and this, I always feel, is a clear indicator as to whether or not they believe the story they are telling you!”

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He went on to compare today’s presenters to those from “his day”, where meteorologists were required to look a certain way.

“In my days on screen we were employees of the Meteorological Office, which made us, in effect, servicemen,” he explained.

“Presenting weather reports was like going on parade and we were obliged to have neat, short hair.”

Bill didn’t specify which presenters he was talking about specifically, but the current meteorologists at the BBC include Carol Kirkwood and Ben Rich.

Bill’s full interview is available to read now in Radio Times.

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