The 76-year-old Who singer is among an age group told not to leave home for any reason, with restrictions remaining in place despite the raising of other rules in England. However, the measures have come with the stipulation that people should use their “common sense.” Because he lives in a rural environment, Daltrey said he feels comfortable leaving his home.
“I live in the countryside, so it’s a lot easier,” he told the Express. “I cannot imagine what it must be like stuck in London in a flat with a couple of kids. … I’m not moaning about anything, but, equally as a 76-year-old, I’m not going to be told by anybody to stay in. Go fuck yourselves. We can’t wrap ourselves in cotton wool.”
The U.K. government has been criticized for providing updates that are regarded as confusing by many – but the singer said he understood why it’s happening. “For every academic that’s telling us one thing on the science, there’s any equally academic scientist on the other side of the fence saying, ‘No, you’re wrong and this what we should do,’” he argued. “No wonder the public’s confused, no wonder the government’s confused and no wonder that, all around the world, there are different results on how we’re getting through it.”
He noted that making comparisons between how different cultures and environments deal with disease would be like comparing “apples and oranges,” but said he believed the British people had done well under the circumstances. “I’m very proud of us for that, and, again, our front-line clinicians and clinical-care workers, I’ll clap all day long for,” he added, referring to the British habit of standing on doorsteps to applaud healthcare staff every Thursday at 8PM.
Daltrey shared thoughts for those in the music industry who are worse off than him. “I do feel sorry for young musicians … also, orchestral musicians, these people that have studied for years and years and years to play in orchestras,” he said. “They’re all out of work – the road crews, the truck drivers, the lighting people, the whole industry is sitting on its fingers. … it’s horrendous.”
Last week, Daltrey appealed to people to remember his charity, the Teenage Cancer Trust, when thinking about donating to good causes during the pandemic. Its annual fundraising event in London was canceled because of the lockdown, leaving a multi-million-dollar gap in its finances for 2020.
“We need a vital lifeline at the moment, and we won’t get it from the first round of charitable money coming out of the government, because that’s got to be tailored specific,” he explained. “It’s heartbreaking to see us in the state that we are in, where all our fundraising has been stopped. … To survive this, we have to raise [approximately $7 million] this year. So whatever you can give, it doesn’t matter what it is, it will really help us.”