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London Beautiful LOCKDOWN: Part 1

Updated: Jun 30, 2020

Since March 23rd 2020, the United Kingdom was hit with a major lockdown due to the virus COVID-19 also known as Coronavirus, which has also affected the entire world. Businesses have shut down for the foreseeable future, productions have stopped and life as we knew it before the 23rd of March 2020 has changed. For some it maybe a silent life, some it could be heart breaking and for others it could be the well needed break they never thought would come. @londonbeautifullife has a 4-part blog series asking Londoners who live in the busiest city in the United Kingdom how they have coped during COVID-19 and Lockdown!

The empty streets of Soho.


Kai Lutterodt - @mysohotimes / @the.soho.girl / @travelmakerkai

@mysohotimes / @the.soho.girl / @travelmakerkai


"My 2020 started with a bang! After the successful launch of My Soho Times - a hyperlocal free print magazine, I was motivated and excited to get to work on the spring issue… Just as we were ready to print the pandemic hit. Businesses we’d partnered with to promote were closing by the minute. I felt defeated. How could I release a publication which encouraged readers to go out and experience Soho, when we were in the grip of a lockdown and being advised to stay at home? At this point I had two options: pull the duvet over my head and dwell in self-pity, or think on my feet - could I adapt the spring issue to address the current situation?"

@mysohotimes / @the.soho.girl / @travelmakerkai


"Thankfully I went with the latter by including content about generating income during lockdown, a Samaritans ad and creating a ‘what you need to know about COVID-19’ poster from info sourced from gov.uk. It’s been a rollercoaster of a journey to say the least! Although I believe our USP is being a print magazine (I love holding a physical copy of what I'm reading!), to encourage people to follow the Government guidelines and stay at home, I decided to make this issue digital and available to all those who sign up via our website (www.mysohotimes.co.uk). I’ve seen lots more engagement with our readers online, and what’s great is that even our partner businesses are part of that engagement. I’ve had to learn new digital marketing skills to adapt to this current situation.


When the COVID-19 pandemic is over? I’m planning the biggest My Soho Times party yet - and everyone’s invited! I’ll probably also never decline an invite to a social event again after spending so much time cooped up indoors!"

@mysohotimes / @the.soho.girl / @travelmakerkai


"I’d encourage anyone feeling defeated, lost or anxious during this COVID-19 pandemic to firstly - don’t be too hard on yourself. Acknowledge these feelings, you’re not alone. That said, also try to use this time to think outside of the box, learn new skills, or simply catch up on things you enjoy doing. This too shall pass and we’ll come out stronger! Thank you @londonbeautfullife for being so supportive since the very beginning!


Get the latest issue of My Soho Times sent to your inbox by signing up for our newsletter => http://eepurl.com/gDhka9


Kai Lutterodt, aka The Soho Girl

Founder and editor of My Soho Times"


Sophie Clapton - @travelsofsophie

@travelsofsophie


"My profession is I make some money while travelling from my Instagram page @travelsofsophie and blog We Dream of Travel (www.wedreamoftravel.com), which I work on with my partner, Adam.


Prior to travelling, I used to work with disabled children and young adults with special needs. In September last year, I returned home after travelling for 4 years full time to work and save for a while.

Most recently I’ve been working as a nanny for a young girl in rehabilitation after a serious illness. However, with the change in circumstances due to coronavirus, this job has stopped to reduce risk to the family and myself and has left me without work for the foreseeable future.

As both my Instagram page and blog are primarily travel related, income from these have both stopped since the pandemic".

@travelsofsophie


"Beyond COVID-19 leaving me pretty much unemployed, it’s also preventing me from seeing Adam who is from Oregon and currently there in lockdown with his family.

However, there have been some positives to all this. Now I’m not working 70+ hours per week, I’ve been able to work through a lot of photos that I’ve been meaning to edit and organise for a long time. I’ve caught up with some of my favourite TV shows and I’ve been working out every day (and even got my Dad to join me for some of it!).


I have to admit though that I’ve not been as productive as I would have liked when it comes to learning. I’ve yet to really learn anything completely new, although I have been practicing Spanish on Duolingo more often! I want to invest more time in learning some more advanced features of Photoshop, as well as more about SEO to hopefully start growing our blog again once all this is over!"


https://www.wedreamoftravel.com/

@travelsofsophie


James Robson - @realjamesrobson

@realjamesrobson


"Prior to COVID-19 I was studying at the international school of screen acting, known as ISSA. I had just finished my second term, going into my third term. During this period the school had pushed back the start date towards the end of April, so in the meantime they have structured a 4 week programme which is all online".

@realjamesrobson


"How it has affected me from a professional stand point, I am no longer able to interact with people, but this has affected the industry as a whole. Subsequently because of this prior to me going to a drama school, I am working in property management and because of COVID-19 I have gone back into this in my family business helping out my fathers company in property management regarding this situation for renters on a commercial and residential stand point.


How it has affected my social life, it has been an odd one not being able to see people, but obviously through the lovely mediums of Zoom and House Party, I have started playing poker online with friends, so at least we have an activity which is fun. Best thing about this is I can reach out to people I wouldn't necessarily reach out to on a regular basis. It is fun to talk to people and interact with people you don't normally talk to on a daily basis".

@realjamesrobson


"I don't know if I have learnt many skills, the skills I am trying to learn are through my acting and keeping that up to date, learning scripts. I have written a couple of scenes for some show reel material and I had time to finish of a screen play I had been writing, which is set in the 18/19 hundreds. It's a cross between the Notebook and Django Unchained. It's on more the white masters rather than the slave story but it all interlinks. I have been researching on the history of that so I have learnt more about slavery than I would had if I didn't have all this time on my hands.


I am excited for after lockdown is getting back to work and focusing on my acting, focus career path and I want to meet all my friends again. You become more appreciative of quality time. I don't see this over anytime soon. I hope we all get over this and I look forward to appreciating life".


Karlo Baker - @karlobaker

@karlobaker


"I run multiple businesses and have a real passion for public speaking. I mostly speak at business conventions and universities. I collaborate with a range of brands as a brand ambassador as well. A lot of my time is spent face to face and the issue now is everything has stopped due to COVID-19. Because of this most of my work has moved online.


As part of taking public speaking online I am currently developing various online training courses for my clients to help and support them. I speak a lot on confidence and mental health, influence, how to start a business, men's style and fashion. I want to encourage people through my Instagram (@karlobaker) to lead a healthy and better life. Another business we have taken online is called "Music Box Live" (@musicboxliveldn) (www.musicboxlive.co.uk) with which we have recently done an 11 hour streaming event for. This was purely for charity: We called it "Stay Live Connect" (www.stayliveconnect.com).

@karlobaker


"COVID-19 has affected me with the obvious which is the cash flow, but we have innovated and have taken things online and continue to support our partners, clients and friends. Social life is all online now, so am just using a different platform to communicate with my friends and people I work with.


I am excited for when the lockdown is over, to seeing friends; to getting back to work face to face; and speaking in public again. Because of COVID-19 however, I do think that I as a business owner will be shifting client work online more in the future.


Overall I am really looking forward to this summer and can't wait to get my social life back."

@karlobaker


Becca De Laroque - @beccadelaroque and Kym Azzopardi - @kymazzopardii

@kymazzopardii and @beccadelaroque


PRE LOCKDOWN TO LOCKDOWN IN THE MALDIVES.


"So we booked a last minute trip to the Maldives, because we just finished our jobs and I was so excited to go because I [Becca] use to go every year with my granny. Going back was amazing, it is like a second home to me. I was excited to see friends over there and not worry about work.


Few days prior to the Maldives Coronavirus just started being a scary topic but it wasn't a huge concern at the time. We stopped off in Dubai and bought hand sanitiser. When we arrived in the Maldives in the beautiful island Reethi Faru, they straight away tested us for the Coronavirus and said we would know within five days if we had it or not and we didn't have it but everyday in the Maldives there were constant updates on what was going on in the world."

@kymazzopardii and @beccadelaroque


"There was rumours if someone had Coronavirus we would have to stay in the country. There was the unknown feeling would we get our flight back, would the flight be cancelled, which was scary. One moment we would have the urge to change our flight to an earlier flight and another moment someone is saying you should stay out here as it is dangerous to go home. We were having the best time ever, but there was this unsettling thought at the back of our minds saying what should we realistically do!


We went to reception in our resort and they said they weren't here for profit from our guests and said if we would like to stay longer, they would give us an amazing deal, there was 8 weeks of food here but there is always still the unknown. They kindly upgraded us to a water villa."

@beccadelaroque and @kymazzopardii


"With us being upgraded to the water villa, the hotel resort staff were turning our old rooms to isolation rooms. They were so on it in the Maldives. I ended up not seeing my friends in the Maldives as they weren't allowed to leave their islands. It did come down to a massive decision do we stay out in the Maldives and be stuck here for months and not see our family or do we come home to London and risk getting the virus going through the airports. We were undecisive until the final day as we weren't sure to risk it or not.


We called our insurance company and they said no you have to come home it's government guidelines, then our island which we were on said the virus is getting worst and we are closing our island. We did jump on the flight, we wore masks but also got told to wear sunglasses. Apparently the virus can be contracted through the eyes. We eventually got home to London, the moment we got physically home we washed everything."

@beccadelaroque and @kymazzopardii


"Overall it did affect us both as we didn't know what to do and had to make a brash decision. COVID-19 luckily hasn't affected our social life as we do have social media and we can face time people. We are used to going out and being social with friends and at events so that's changed but it is the same with everyone. I did have to cancel my Ibiza trip as a friend is a high risk of contracting the virus.


Since lockdown I [Becca] have learnt backgammon, I have worked out more than ever, become more organised, spending time with family, catching up with friends virtually and been doing online courses to keep my brain going. Kym has been reading a lot more books and studying new things. And after lockdown we are excited to go out and party hard!"


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Read London Beautiful LOCKDOWN: Part 2 here!

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