'Stupid and dangerous' - Anti-lockdown leaflets posted around city

City councillor Karen Davis, working at the NR2 foodbank. Picture: Karen Davis

City councillor Karen Davis, working at the NR2 foodbank. Picture: Karen Davis - Credit: Karen Davis

A councillor has spoken of her dismay after leaflets urging people to break lockdown rules were posted through doors in the city.

Karen Davis, Norwich City Council's cabinet member for social inclusion, said a number of people had alerted her to a variety of leaflets that had been posted through doors.

These leaflets, which we have chosen not to publish, include messages urging people to disobey lockdown rules and stop wearing masks, while others describe Covid-19 as "an illusion".

Other fliers link themselves to the anti-lockdown protest group Stand Up X, which recently held protests in the capital over the measures.

Ms Davis has condemned the leaflets, urging whoever was spreading them to stop.

She said: "In a time when the NHS has seen a significant rise in winter intensive care bed usage compared with last year, these leaflets are just irresponsible.

"What we need to be doing is following the rules, wearing masks, staying at home and doing everything we can to protect the NHS and each other."

One of the leaflets sent was identical to the one received by Ben Gadsby-Williams towards the end of 2020, containing messages urging people against receiving the Covid-19 vaccine.

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Four separate leaflets were raised with Ms Davis, including one claiming to be "an urgent public notice" telling people to "wake up and remove your masks", which the councillor described as "a shocker".

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The leaflets have been condemned by Paul Hunter, a professor in infectious diseases at the University of East Anglia.

He said: "I know from previous work that people who believe in conspiracy theories around viruses are at a much greater risk than those who do not.

"Whoever is circulating these conspiracies should be absolutely ashamed of themselves - they are deliberately trying to persuade people to do things that will put them and their loved ones at severe risk of illness or even worse death.

"In my opinion, it is not only stupid but criminally dangerous."

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Andrew Proctor, leader of Norfolk County Council, also criticised the people sending the leaflets.

He said: "How daft can you be? My advice to anyone who receives any of these leaflets would be to just completely ignore them." 

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