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Ivy, 104, and the Mayor get their Covid vaccinations

29 January, 2021 — By Helen Chapman

Mayor of Islington Janet Burgess prepares for an injection she ‘barely felt’

ONE of the borough’s oldest residents is urging people to take up the coronavirus vaccine after receiving her own jab last week.

Ivy Watts, who turned 104 last year, told residents to “have no fear” after she had the vaccine at the Bingfield Primary Care Centre in Bingfield Street – close to Caledonian Road.

Black, Asian and minority ethnic residents have been urged not to shun the vaccine after an equality survey showed non-white people were less likely to join the take-up.

Ms Watts’ friend Luke Daniels, President of the Caribbean Labour Society, said: “So many people in the black community are cautious about the vaccine, but Ivy saw the sense in having it.”

Ivy Watts

Mr Daniels said: “I was aware there are a lot of anti-vaxxers and things going around on the internet that some people actually believe in so I think it is important to show people the vaccine is ok.”

Ms Watts was born in 1916 and worked as a seamstress making coats in Exmouth Market.

Before that she was a cook after coming to the UK from Guyana in 1962.

Ms Watts, who lives on the Finsbury Estate, said: “It’s not hard. It’s comfortable. It’s not something to be afraid of.”

The mayor of Islington has also had her vaccine jab this week. Janet Burgess pulled up the sleeves of her robes at the Hanley Primary Care Centre in Finsbury Park.

Councillor Burgess, whose husband Wally died of the virus last year, was among the new cohort of “over 70s” who were contacted last week to receive their first dose of the vaccine.

She said: “I barely felt the injection and I’ve been fine since. The quicker we can all get the vaccine the faster we can get on with our lives.”

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