With the start of a second Covid lockdown commencing on Thursday 5 November coinciding with fine late autumn weather, and little or no law-enforcement, Weymouth esplanade was not short of numerous people stretching their legs, with many senior citizens sitting and enjoying the late warm sun and Dorset fresh air.

In contrast, when the first lock-down commenced during March this year, the esplanade was mainly deserted, with the exception of patrolling members of the law enforcing restrictions - one could exercise for 30 minutes, but were not allowed to sit-down - shame!

Living alone with no family or relations nearby, at the time, to keep occupied, I got into a daily routine of driving to the Food Hall and shopping for essentials and a newspaper.

Then a short drive to the top of a deserted Bowleaze Coveway overlooking the beautiful Weymouth Bay - what better place to park quietly for 30 minutes and read the paper, sitting in the car by yourself?

Doing this for over a week, one morning an unmarked gleaming black van with 2 police officers pulled-up by the side of my car.

Winding the window down I was asked what was I doing?

“Sitting in the car reading the newspaper” I replied.

In an aggressive response I was informed this was not allowed, and I could be subject to a 60 pound fine if I failed to go home immediately.

After 9 months of adapting to a change of confusing daily lifestyle and routine, at the moment the second lock-down for the past month, appears more easy, acceptable and relaxed, as confirmed by a large gathering of local citizens, who assembled to pay their respects at the Pier Bandstand on Remembrance Sunday, in spite of a government restriction on gatherings of over 30 people and a possible “superfine” of 10,000 pounds which would not have impressed the British Legion.

Coinciding with the year end, our insecure lifestyle of past months will hopefully improve in the New Year.

Barry Sampson