When local watch collector Jared Steadman decided to designed a watch inspired by Winchester’s Diver Bill, little did he know it would change his life.
Jared, who was given his first watch – a Swatch – by his Mum at the age of seven, became a keen diver, and it was while living in Winchester that he discovered the story of William Walker.
“It was in Winchester Cathedral, that I first heard about Diver Bill – the nickname given to William Walker,” he says. “His copper and brass dive helmet is on show there as testimony to his courage. In 1906, he dived under the Southern wall of the Cathedral and for five years, re-laid the foundations with his bare hands as the Cathedral was sinking into the peat below.”
“While I admired the helmet, it struck me that the window of the copper and brass helmet looked like a watch’s bezel. I’d been collecting watches for some time and decided to design a watch that paid tribute to Diver Bill with a copper case and a brass bezel.”
The Royal Hampshire County Hospital’s Intensive Care Unit has just a handful of coronavirus patients. The majority of the 42 beds brought in to cope with the predicted demand lie empty. The working day, it appears, has begun a slow return to ‘normal’ – whatever that is now.
“We’re waiting to see what will happen once the lockdown measures are lifted,” says consultant anaesthetist, Dr Geoff Watson. “There is concern that we’ll suddenly have a new influx of coronavirus patients once that happens. We’ve seen fewer than usual seriously ill patients with other conditions over the lockdown partly because of the lack of exposure and a more sedentary lifestyle. Those cases will inevitably go back to the numbers we usually deal with and there are signs of this already happening.”
It’s volunteer honorary chaplain Danny Paine-Winnett’s first day at The Royal Hampshire County Hospital in Winchester. He’s been in the building for fewer than two hours and is leading a minute’s silence to remember NHS workers who have lost their lives to Covid – in the pouring rain. “God certainly tests us sometimes,” he says with a smile, looking at the weather.
Last month I paid for a private Corona Virus antibody test, which is now available from Winchester GP.
Before you say it’s not right, it’s something only the privileged can access and all tests should be sent to the NHS, let me give you a scenario.
Local newsman Alastair Stewart admits for the first time in a very long time, he has some time on his hands.
The former television anchor-man retired from ITV News in January this year, following a ‘misjudgment’ on social media. Until his retirement, he was the longest-serving male newsreader on British television, having worked in both local and national news for over 40 years.
When the University of Winchester decided not to hold the popular Writers’ Festival in 2020, director Sara Gangai took the opportunity to create a new event with a fresh new, now virtual, programme.