A COUPLE has been forced to cancel celebrations for their 70th wedding anniversary celebrations in fear of contracting coronavirus and now feel like prisoners in their own home.

It comes as over-70s could be told to self-isolate for up to four-months in response to the Covid-19 outbreak.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said it is a “very big ask”, but it is a measure which is for their own “self-protection”.

In an acknowledgement of the almost wartime measures being introduced, Mr Hancock said the steps are “very, very significant and they will disrupt the ordinary lives of almost everybody in the country”.

Pressed on when the measure will be introduced, he said: “Certainly in the coming weeks, absolutely.”

READ MORE: Over-70s will be asked to self-isolate for up to four months – Health Secretary

For Ron and Kit Hodges, a Hereford couple married at St Martin’s Church in Hereford in 1950, they have taken the step to self-isolate.

The pair, who are both 93, were due to celebrate their 70th anniversary with a family party, but decided to cancel due to coronavirus concerns.

Their daughter Tricia Hales said her father had found it difficult to find certain food and toiletry items in the shops before isolating himself.

Mrs Hales said her a father was frustrated as he knew he would not be able to shop for quite some time.

“They feel the effect on them will be tremendous as they live in the country and will have to rely on the family picking up their medication, shopping and daily newspaper.

“They have cancelled the cleaner and all hospital appointments have been cancelled.

“The social isolation will have a massive impact on their lives, they feel like prisoners in their own homes and will have to talk to each other more than normal and after 70 years of marriage the main conversation has always been about their great grandchildren’s lives.”


The shortage of supplies in supermarkets has also caused problems for 88-year-old Hazel Jones, another county resident self-isolating.

While Mrs Jones, who lives in Kingsland with her husband, said they could keep themselves occupied with DVDs, books and the computer, they are worried about how they will get essential food items.

She said: “They’re telling is if you’re over-70 not to go out, and we don’t mind that.

“But usually on a Sunday or Monday I go online and order shopping for a Wednesday, but the first slot they (Waitrose) had was March 26.

“We have got food and we could almost withstand the siege, but it’s milk, bread and potatoes that don’t keep, the three basics that we can’t do without.

“Why can’t these companies do something for old people? I was so exasperated, I could’ve thrown the computer through a window, but that wouldn’t have done much good.”