LAST week was probably the most earth-shattering in British politics since the Second World War.

Like many others, I started the week with three school-age kids, unlikely to go to school this side of September. My eldest in his A-level year, his younger sister in her GCSE year. Like many others, we await anxiously for guidance on how, exactly, their exam grades will be assessed.

But even more significant is the support for business. This is completely and utterly unprecedented, but it makes the most amount of sense.

Normally, as the economy shuts down, workers have nothing to do so their employers lay them off. The Government then picks up the cost of support through Universal Credit, but when the economy picks up again, businesses are not ready because they have no staff, or might even have gone bust.

The Government’s proposals are to support individuals through their employers, not directly.

That means businesses continue to employ their employees, even though they are at home doing nothing economically productive. But when we start to return to normal, workers are available to come back to work with their existing skills and contacts, and the economy can recover far quicker.

Of course, the Government then has a huge debt problem, but far better to try to resolve that in a recovering economy than make these debt decisions in a crashing one. And there are loans to businesses for a range of other things.

However, we are far from all the answers just yet. This is completely unprecedented and the government must invent a new system completely from scratch. Never has the state had such a level of interaction with the economy. Details are scant, but will come.

Meanwhile, behaviour seems to be odd. Despite incredibly important advice not to hoard and not to get close to other people, photographs of the Dudley Tesco weekend queues beggar belief.

The NHS and the economy can handle this if we manage the progress of coronavirus. That means heeding advice.

But if we all believe we are invincible, save a slightly peculiar craving for toilet rolls, then we will spread this disease to people who are not as invincible as ourselves.

To act with thoughtfulness and compassion is to act on the government’s advice. And if you see someone from the NHS, please say thank you (but no closer than 2 metres). They are our true heroes.