A MAN has spoken of how the thought of a Lake District town helped him in his recovery from Covid in hospital.

Friends David Gregory and David Ross are embarking on a ‘boys’ holiday’ in Ambleside to fulfil a promise Mr Gregory made while Mr Ross was severely ill in hospital with Covid.

The 63-year-old said the texted promise from his friend of five years gave him something to focus on and kept him going during the dark days of his illness.

He was admitted to hospital in early January 2021 and was soon put into the ‘prone’ position (lying on his stomach) for a C-PAP machine to force oxygen into his lungs under pressure.

The Mail: ILL: David Ross in Basingstoke and North Hampshire HospitalILL: David Ross in Basingstoke and North Hampshire Hospital

It was during this time Mr Gregory promised his friend a Lake District trip to celebrate once he had pulled through.

“I was admitted and spent the next 12 days on high levels of oxygen,” said Mr Ross, from Basingstoke.

“48 hours were touch and go whether I went into ICU.

“David sent me one of his “Hi mate; how are you?” texts to be told by me just what dire straights I was in.

“A few days later as I was improving David sent me an image of the Giggling Goose in Ambleside and said, “get well mate and I’ll treat you to the best hot chocolate that you’ve ever had".

“That text and image stayed with me and I regularly looked at it on my phone, willing myself to get properly well and to be in the Lakes with a hot chocolate and not a hospital bed with an oxygen mask.

“You’re stuck there with your thoughts by yourself, and it helps to have something to focus on.

The Mail: FRIENDS: David Gregory and David Ross have been friends for five yearsFRIENDS: David Gregory and David Ross have been friends for five years

“At the time I thought it was ‘prison talk’ nice to think about but it would never actually happen.

“How wrong I was to underestimate what such a good friend David is, so true to his word, we’re travelling to Ambleside to stay for a few days and yes, enjoy that cup of hot chocolate that I longed for while I was in hospital.

“I’m very fond of Ambleside.”

The friends, who both volunteer as community first responders, will embark on their adventure on Monday.

“It didn’t matter who you were you couldn’t go and see somebody in hospital,” said Mr Gregory, 56.

“No one was allowed in, he couldn’t have anybody, so all we could do was talk by text message.

“I felt I had to help him survive and luckily he pulled through.”