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First cuddle with granddaughter as lockdown restrictions ease

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A GRANDMOTHER has enjoyed her first cuddle with her three-week-old granddaughter thanks to the easing of the Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

Lauren Phillips with her mum, Jane Farnham and her children, Arlo, 3, and Summer, who is three weeks’ old. Lauren’s mum has met her granddaughter for the first time now they are permitted to have a family bubble. (Picture supplied by family)

Jane Farnham’s daughter Lauren Phillips gave birth to Summer after lockdown was brought in, leading to the family having to wait to see each other in person again.

But when it was announced that one household ‘bubble’ could choose one other to connect with, the choice of household was simple, said Miss Farnham.

Mrs Phillips finished work on 18 March, a bit earlier than might be usual in a pregnancy since she was considered to be a high risk if she caught the virus.

The plan was for her to enjoy her final days of pregnancy with support from her mum, husband Tom and with three-year-old son, Arlo.

But when she developed cold-like symptoms, she had to keep away from people outside her household.

‘I had a cough and a cold so they had to treat me as if I was positive,’ she said.

‘It was so horrible but it was in order to be safe.’

Summer arrived on 8 April at 2.40am – two days later than scheduled – with Mrs Phillips’ husband, Tom, the only family member allowed to visit.

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Before Mrs Phillips was able to leave hospital with Summer, both of them were tested to make sure they were both negative for the virus, which they were.

So she returned home with a newborn and three-year-old but no access to gran: ‘And Arlo can’t go to nursery at the moment and he doesn’t understand that I have to be with the baby,’ said Mrs Phillips

Mr Phillips’ job as manager of a garden centre meant he had to go out to work.

But with the new lockdown concession, Mrs Phillips’ mum is now able to visit to lend a hand.

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Miss Farnham wasted no time in paying a visit to see her new granddaughter and was enjoying her first ever cuddle when the Guernsey Press spoke to her.

‘It’s been a strange time,’ she said.

She retired from her job just before lockdown was brought in.

‘I was so looking forward to retirement then suddenly I was on my own.

‘I’d planned to spend time with Lauren and help with the pregnancy and suddenly we weren’t able to see each other.’

After Summer’s birth Mrs Phillips sent her mum photos and they had video calls, but there was no substitute for the real thing, said Miss Farnham.

‘It’s fantastic today. I’ve brought a picnic down.

‘I don’t live very far away so this is within walking distance. I expect I’ll see the children quite a bit.’

Mark Ogier

By Mark Ogier
News reporter

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