Predicting the future is not easy at the best of times, and is even more difficult in the situation we now find ourselves in.

Over three months into the coronavirus crisis however, I believe some of what the future may hold for us is beginning to become clear.

The massive increase in the use of video conferencing for holding remote meetings will change our behaviour. Many of us have sat at home and taken part in calls with colleagues, friends and family not just here in the UK but all over the world. This has led to reductions in travelling, which as well as saving money, is good for the environment.

I don’t think we will see a move to do everything virtually. Physical meetings have their place and help build relationships, but I can see that many more people will spend at least some of their time working from home.

This could be an opportunity for Cumbria, as the technology allows people to live many miles from their workplace, even in another country. Our challenge is to ensure that our connectivity is improved to make it possible for people to live in Cumbria whilst working elsewhere.

Online shopping is here to stay, and businesses will have to adapt to it. This will mean changes to our high streets with less retail floor space required, but more demand for warehouses and distribution.

Many school pupils have benefited from online learning and support whilst not able to attend school. This will increase, and could mean children as well as their parents, spending some of their time working from home.

There has been a big increase in walking and cycling, as we all took our permitted exercise each day, and a corresponding reduction in car use. This has led to improved air quality and hopefully made us healthier and fitter.

It would be easy to slip back into our old ways once the crisis is over, but the threat from climate change has not gone away, and we need to take seriously the need to change our behaviour to help save the planet.

More than anything, the crisis has brought us together as a community, as thousands of volunteers have helped deliver food parcels, gone shopping and generally kept an eye on our neighbours.

I hope that is one thing that doesn’t change, and we all realise the importance of friends and family, during the good times as well as in a crisis.