THERE are signs that life is slowly returning to normal across the district.

But local organisations are determined to ensure that the most vulnerable people in our community receive the help and support they need until the coronavirus pandemic has gone for good.

The volunteer-led Hexham Community Together Scheme has done a remarkable job since it was launched in March to assist people who were self-isolating, and were unable to call upon family, neighbours and friends for tasks such as shopping and collecting prescriptions.

Leaders of the scheme have announced that demand for its services have decreased substantially in recent weeks, and predicted that the trend was set to continue.

However, the scheme will remain in place for those who need it.

The Hexham Courant launched its bouquet of the week appeal in April to recognise the work of special citizens across the Tyne Valley.

This week, we shine a light on the Hexham Community Together initiative, and the essential work it has done over the past three months.

The initiative is a unique collaboration involving both Northumberland County Council and Hexham Town Council, with volunteers working hard to serve the community.

Other organisations have also played their part, including Adapt, Hexham Community Partnership, Hexham Youth Initiative and Karbon Homes.

Hexham town councillor Cath Homer, who also serves on the county council representing Hexham East, thanked volunteers for their hard work.

She added: “As we start to move cautiously into the second phase of unlocking our communities, I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for all your support, which has kept many of our older and more vulnerable and isolated residents going over the last 12 weeks.

“The response and willingness to help has been truly amazing and demonstrates once again what a great place we are lucky to live in.”

Coun. Homer explained why residents in need had become less dependent on the scheme in recent weeks.

She added: “Over this time, we have seen the national chains improve their access to deliveries for vulnerable customers and many of our local businesses have stepped up and adapted to new ways of operating, which has meant that the number of calls for help has steadily decreased.”

People who do not have access to any other means of obtaining shopping and prescriptions can call (01434) 609575, Monday to Friday between 10am and 3pm.

Residents continuing to shield will receive deliveries directly as per their existing arrangements.

Nominate somebody for the accolade here.