A few weeks ago, before the Government’s lockdown rules came into place, a friend commented to me that he wondered just how different society would look when we came out of the other side of the coronavirus pandemic.

So much has changed in just a few short weeks. Shops, pubs, restaurants and many other businesses closed; millions of people on furlough leave or asked to take pay cuts; police warning people they should not travel to the Lake District;

families and friends physically separated from each other as all of us are repeatedly advised to stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives.

This pandemic has affected everyone. Not since the first astronauts sent back those glorious photographs of the blue Earth shining brightly against the inky blackness of space has it become so clear that, ultimately, we are one planet and that there are some things which transcend national borders.

It’s also shown that, however sophisticated society might seem, we are all vulnerable when something of this magnitude strikes.

While there have been some acts of selfishness – some of the early stockpiling of food and those who have ignored the ‘stay at home’ guidance – there have also been numerous acts that show the strength of community spirit.

Examples include the Nightingale hospital built in just nine days – an amazing, concerted effort; countries helping each other, such as Germany taking patients from virus-torn Italy; retired NHS staff going back to work.

That positive attitude has always been on show in South Lakeland and has been demonstrated again by all those who have signed up to groups like the Kendal self-isolation support group, which is offering to do grocery shopping and provide over-the-phone social interaction for vulnerable, isolated people.

It’s been refreshing nationally to see politicians interacting and challenging each other but without political point scoring. A recent Question Time featured Matt Hancock clearly listening intently to take on board the comments of the other panellists while Labour’s Andy Burnham acknowledged the tough job the Health Secretary was having to do.

Let’s hope when this is all over – and it will be – that a lasting legacy will be a humbler society and that the wonderful community spirit shown by so many people continues to flourish.