From cathedrals to football stadiums to the most remote corners of the country, the task of vaccinating the nation against Covid-19 has taken over all sorts of venues – and a new photo series celebrates the people making it possible.
Photojournalists Jude Palmer, Glenn Edward and Liam McBurney have been touring the UK over the past few months to capture intimate moments in the vaccine programme, which has seen more than 30 million people receive their first dose, and more than 10 million now fully vaccinated.
The behind-the-scenes images are a portrait of the volunteers and healthcare workers behind the rollout, but also show people before and after receiving the vaccine – some in more out of the way places than others.
Dr Gavin Chestnutt, a 42-year-old GP partner at Ballycastle Medical Practice and part-time farmer, is among those featured in the project. He’s seen vaccinating a 92-year-old man in his front garden overlooking the Rathlin Island coastline in Northern Island.
“It’s been a real honour to play such a central part in the vaccine rollout programme and witness people’s physical relief as they get their first and second jabs,” says Dr Chestnutt. “To save elderly people travelling to the clinic through snow and frosty conditions, I’ve been travelling round on boats and by car to reach the most remote corners of Northern Ireland.
“Most overwhelming has been to see how grateful everyone has been for getting their vaccine and finally seeing some light at the end of the tunnel.”
Alice Tooley, a 25-year-old volunteer service co-ordinator at refugee charity RETAS in Leeds, is among those pictured receiving her vaccine.
“I was invited to get the vaccine because of my frontline work with vulnerable adults. Getting the vaccine was important to me as it meant I could continue my work with asylum seekers and refugees feeling confidence that I wasn’t putting them or myself at risk of the virus,” she says.
“As younger people my age get called for theirs, I hope they jump at it the way I did so, as a collective, we all play our part in getting back to a more normal way of life.”
The images have been released to coincide with a new government campaign titled ‘Every Vaccination Gives Us Hope,’ which aims to encourage those due to be offered vaccines to join the millions who have already received their jabs.
The campaign is predominantly targeting people under the age of 50 who are soon to be offered their first dose, as well as the over 50s who are booked in for their second dose. As well as encouraging vaccine uptake, it highlights the role the vaccine is playing in preventing infections, hospitalisations and death.
In February and March, Palmer, Edward and McBurney toured the country, visiting venues including the Science Museum in London, Salisbury Cathedral in Wiltshire, the Royal Welsh Showground in mid-Wales and Rathlin Island in Northern Ireland, as well as hospitals, mobile vaccination units, care homes and pop-up vaccination sites.
You can see more of their images below.