A leading councillor at Bracknell Forest Council has spoken emphatically about being struck down with coronavirus.

Councillor Dr Gareth Barnard spoke about falling ill with Covid-19 over the last two weeks, and said he ‘thanked his lucky stars’ that he had been triple vaccinated.

Cllr Barnard (Conservative, Warfield Harvest Ride) executive member for children, young people and learning said: “Yes, the omicron variant may be less severe, it’s nonetheless not particularly pleasant.

“And I think every day for the past two weeks whilst going through what many others have gone through, I thank my lucky stars I had the opportunity to have three vaccinations.

“I shudder to think and have huge sympathy for those that have covid and maybe haven’t got that level of protection.”

READ MORE: Over 200 new coronavirus cases recorded in Bracknell 

He said this at a virtual meeting of Bracknell Forest Council’s Local Outbreak Engagement Board on Monday, February 1, which receives regular updates on the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.

In further comments made to the local democracy reporting service, cllr Barnard said: “The thing I’d take away from this I think I would have felt more unwell had I not been triple vaccinated.

“It was down to vigilance and understanding in my family to make sure to isolate and not come into contact with people.

“Although omicron is less serious than previous variants, nonetheless it affects people in different ways.

“In our school there’s lots of covid, and staff are doing their best to keep schools safe.

“The pandemic has not gone away.

“I really encourage people to make the right decisions for themselves.

“It’s really important that when people make choices about their health that they follow geniune science and evidence.”

READ MORE: School pupils in deprived areas ‘much less likely’ to have Covid-19 vaccine

People from Bracknell Forest can get the first, second or third vaccine dose on demand at the Tesco Superstore in County Lane, Warfield until 4pm today (Thursday, February 3), from 3pm to 8pm on Friday, February 4 and 11am to 4pm on Saturday, February 5.

According to the latest Government data,  85.4 per cent of people aged 12+ have had a first dose of a covid-19 vaccine in Bracknell Forest.

Meanwhile, 80 per cent of people have had a second dose, and 63.4 per cent of people have received a booster vaccine in the area, according to figures from Tuesday, February 1.

Yesterday, 256 fresh cases of coronavirus were reported in Bracknell Forest (Wednesday, February 2), and a total of 32,900 people have tested positive since the pandemic began.

According to the latest figures up to January 21, a total of 215 people have died after testing positive for covid-19 in the area.