Isleham resident goes above and beyond for villagers during lockdown with visual walk

PUBLISHED: 17:29 04 August 2020

Isleham resident Walter Gunston has been taking pictures during his daily walk in a bid to keep those shielding in touch with his local community. Picture: SUPPLIED/WALTER GUNSTON

Isleham resident Walter Gunston has been taking pictures during his daily walk in a bid to keep those shielding in touch with his local community. Picture: SUPPLIED/WALTER GUNSTON

Archant

He is known for going above and beyond as a way of bringing his village community together, and his latest idea has done just that.

Isleham resident Walter Gunston has been taking pictures during his daily walk in a bid to keep those shielding in touch with his local community. Picture: SUPPLIED/WALTER GUNSTONIsleham resident Walter Gunston has been taking pictures during his daily walk in a bid to keep those shielding in touch with his local community. Picture: SUPPLIED/WALTER GUNSTON

From illuminating his house for the weekly clap for carers, to dressing up for what would have been this year’s annual gala, Walter Gunston knows how to cheer residents up.

Since the early weeks of the coronavirus lockdown, Walter, who has lived in Isleham all his life, has been taking and posting pictures on social media of things he thought would catch the eye during his daily walk in and around the village.

“Since lockdown, a lot of villagers have been self-isolating or told they had to stay and shield. I do like to do things that are different and go over the top on what I call ’normal’,” he said.

“In the morning, I do a brisk walk of around 20 minutes, going to different roads and thought I will start posting pictures when I walk.

Isleham resident Walter Gunston has been taking pictures during his daily walk in a bid to keep those shielding in touch with his local community. Picture: SUPPLIED/WALTER GUNSTONIsleham resident Walter Gunston has been taking pictures during his daily walk in a bid to keep those shielding in touch with his local community. Picture: SUPPLIED/WALTER GUNSTON

“There may be a lovely green coloured bush so I will take a picture of that, or hanging baskets. One or two commented saying it’s lovely, like a visual walk.”

MORE: Villager spreads joy to fellow residents to mark Isleham Gala day amid lockdown

The idea of a ‘visual walk’ came about when someone suggested the name on one of Walter’s social media posts, which have been seen from current and former villagers who have moved away.

Walter, 64, who is also a member of the Isleham Gala committee and helps with the poppy project at the village’s St Andrew’s Church, announced he would no longer be posting on his visual walk from next week after shielding restrictions eased across most parts of the UK.

Isleham resident Walter Gunston has been taking pictures during his daily walk in a bid to keep those shielding in touch with his local community. Picture: SUPPLIED/WALTER GUNSTONIsleham resident Walter Gunston has been taking pictures during his daily walk in a bid to keep those shielding in touch with his local community. Picture: SUPPLIED/WALTER GUNSTON

However, Walter realises the impact his idea has had on those who have not been able to live their daily lives in the same way he has.

“It’s phenomenal to come together and work as a community in these very strange times,” he said.

“Before lockdown, people didn’t speak as much when they were out, but now they speak more. It’s for the community and those people who have been stuck at home.

“It’s time-consuming, but it’s worth it with all the comments. I didn’t expect the reaction that I got and they are so appreciative of me doing it.”

Isleham resident Walter Gunston has been taking pictures during his daily walk in a bid to keep those shielding in touch with his local community. Picture: SUPPLIED/WALTER GUNSTONIsleham resident Walter Gunston has been taking pictures during his daily walk in a bid to keep those shielding in touch with his local community. Picture: SUPPLIED/WALTER GUNSTON

Villagers shared their happiness for Walter who marked what would have been the Isleham Gala event in his own way. Picture: SUPPLIED/DONNA WOODCOCKVillagers shared their happiness for Walter who marked what would have been the Isleham Gala event in his own way. Picture: SUPPLIED/DONNA WOODCOCK


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