And it's goodbye from them: Watch the video charting the Newbury Vaccination Centre journey to be featured on South Today on BBC One
The vaccination hub at Newbury Racecourse closed down on Wednesday, June 16, and one of the volunteers has produced a video summing up its six months in action.
John Hamlett, one of the lead volunteers, kept a photographic record of the operation, which administered more than 66,000 jabs to patients across West Berkshire. He surprised his fellow volunteers with this video, which depicts everything from car park operations, to showing people into the centre and guiding them through the vaccination process.
The hub was a collaboration between nine local surgeries – Strawberry Hill, Eastfield House, Downland, Falkland, Burdwood, Thatcham, Hungerford, Lambourn, and Kintbury & Woolton Hill – and involved more than 500 personnel, many of them volunteers.
Mr Hamlett said: "I often make videos of holidays and family events and I thought it would be nice for fellow volunteers to have a memory of the centre, so I always had it in mind to create a video album."
Mr Hamlett got involved with the volunteer operation from the beginning. He said: "I went along to my surgery - Falkland - at the beginning of January and offered my services as a volunteer."
When the hub opened the wintry weather meant volunteers had to wrap up warm as they stood outside in the wind, rain and sometimes snow – but they never stopped smiling. He said his abiding memory of the experience was at the very beginning when the very elderly and vulnerable were being called up for their jab: "The weather was freezing, but it didn't stop them and they were just so happy to receive their vaccination. I wish I could have captured that joy in the video."
Volunteers directed people around the car park, welcomed people into the centre, checked them in and showed them to the vaccination cubicles before seeing them on their way.
Mr Hamlett sent the video to his fellow volunteers saying: "Here is a link to a short 'training film' on how to park a car and give a jab. Best viewed on a big TV screen with good sound and drink in hand."
He went on to apologise to any volunteer that doesn't appear in the video, but, he said, "you do get a name check at the end".
Mr Hamlett's video and the Newbury Racecourse Vaccination Centre will be featured on BBC One's South Today this evening, Friday June 18.
You can watch the video here: