Sunday 27 December 2020

The Tweets of the year in the London Borough of Barnet for 2020

Every week, the Barnet Eye lists the ten best tweets of the week. This has become one of our most popular features. For me personally, it has had the unexpected bonus of introducing me to several new friends and guest contributors to the blog. We always produce a summary of the best, picking one from each month. This year, this was a rather strange experience. Unless you are living on Mars, you will be well aware of how the year radically changed tack in March. It has been quite an interesting year for tweeting in the Borough, despite all of the turmoil and chaos in the world. 

Reviewing the tweets chronologically really brought home to me what a roller coaster. How nomal the first three months of the year were until mid March, how much we pulled together during the early lockdown, how optimistic it all seemed in the summer, how normality was resuming and how suddenly we hit the buffers a week ago.  There are many amazing tweets that I didn't pick, as the more I went through, the more I realised that our tweeters told the story in a very human and local way. It is well worth having a look through. Click here for the weekly issues.  If you have a look at last years picks, it is clear that there has been a very different feel to this year's tweets. 

Here are the picks.


I doubt this would have been selected last year, but this tweet from the turn of the year sums up all the reasons I feel so desperately sorry for our young people. Scouting, going to the swimming pool, meeting friends. All the normal things we all just took for granted 


In February, the Mill Hill Litter pickers were out and about doing their thing for the community. As someone who walks through the park on a daily basis, their efforts are sorely needed, but with tier 4 sadly this cannot be a communal exercise


Now in a normal year, I'd only pick one tweet from a month, but I felt that March was a month of two halves. There is this tweet from the 15th, pre lockdown

And this from the end of the month a 


This was a month of full lockdown. Our community rallied and we pulled together to help those who most needed it. I was proud of the efforts.


In May, we started to see treatments being developed for people with serioud cases of covid. It was great to see individuals such as Hal Cruttenden putting something back. It had't occurred to me before I started putting this together, but as the lockdown was national, I think we did all feel as if we were in this together for a period. Although I get the reasons, it seems that the Tier system is somewhat more divisive.


In June, as lockdown started to ease, we saw another of the key moments of 2020. In Friary Park there was a Black Lives Matter vigil. I think it is quite likely that this will be a more enduring legacy of 2020 than Covid. I think there is a general consensus in the UK that racism is not acceptable in this day and age.


By July, it seemed as though we'd got on top of this whole nasty covid business. Things started to open up. Sadly, not always in the way we might have hoped. This tweet sums up the two sides of the slow return to normality beautifully


August saw the return of grassroots football. We basked in the summer sun and it felt like we were in the homeward straights with this whole covid nonsense. A local derby between two iconic local teams saw HadleyFC beat Edgware Town 5-0. Even the Edgware fans were happy though, to have a pint and enjoy some real sport


In those heady days of September, we even saw live music return, how sweet a memory that was.


In October, we had perhaps the Twitter moment of 2020. A good friend of this blog and a regular contributor to this feature, Samuel Levy put out an impassioned plea for support for his campaign to oppose a major development on the green belt in Totteridge Valley. I am proud that the Barnet Eye is associated with Samuel and helped him, he smashed his target of 500 objections with ease. Perhaps this is the only 'normal' tweet of the year in this selection, well done Samuel.


Another positive to come out of 2020 has been the high profile intervention of Marcus Rashford to make free school meals for deprived children a national issue. I never thought that, as a Manchester City fan, I'd be praising a United player in my round up of the years tweets, but only someone with a stone heart could ignore his contribution.


And we end the year in tier 4. I was at Hadley FC when it was announced. This tweet sums up where we are. It was only when I went through the whol lot chronologically that it struck me how different the phases of the year have been. How we came together in Lockdown, how we were optimistic as it was lifted, how things seemed to be returning to normal and how quickly the train hit the buffers at the end of the year.

That's all folks

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