A Twenty Year Old Anorak Click here to discover more
Phil Morris shares a few thoughts about Anoraknophobia which is 20 years old on the 7th May...

Twenty years ago, a major disease severely affected the United Kingdom. No longer comparable with what the entire world has experienced over the past year, it was still a momentous occurrence.

In May 2001 I was in Cardiff helping to deal with Foot and Mouth Disease. Everybody was working 7 long days a week trying to counter something of which all but a very few had any experience. Many of us had been doing so since February. This was the first major outbreak in the UK for many years. The army had been brought in to assist. The entire agriculture sector had ground to a standstill. No-one knew how long it would last. Does this sound familiar? It's all just a matter scale, hindsight tells us.

My personal experience gained brief respite in a form from which many of us benefit at some point in life: music. I vividly recall the day that Anoraknophobia arrived. It was one of the few days I forced myself to take a proper lunch break. I brought the CD and my disc player into the Disease Control Centre and holed up in a quiet corner to immerse myself for an hour. In that all-too-short time I managed to escape the horrendous pressures the farming community in particular were then facing.

I played the album as often thereafter as time allowed, and now do so at least once a year for this anniversary. Whilst doing so inevitably takes me back to that very difficult time, rather than being the painful experience it could be I am simply reminded of that brief hour of escapism and the warm solace of music. It's remarkable the comfort such a flimsy piece of apparel can provide.

Happy 20th, Anoraknophobia.

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