WHAT a shock it was on Tuesday afternoon to hear that a policeman had been injured during a firearm incident in Sutton St James.
And what an absolute tragedy to hear a few hours later that the subsequent siege had ended in tragedy, with the death of a born and bred village resident.
Whatever circumstances led to the police being called out to Barry Horspool or to the pensioner seemingly ending his life, we do not know at the moment.
What we do know is that it was a one-off incident in an otherwise peaceful area of South Holland, and although the events were obviously traumatic and worrying for residents at the time, there is no need for any long-term panic or concern.
Like any other part of the country, we have our problems with crime and anti-social behaviour, but we are better off than many.
The reason our coverage of the siege has dominated the first five pages of the Spalding Guardian today is that it is such a rarity.
We do live in a mostly peaceful area and gun crime is rare. Long may the status quo continue.
We live in a jolly generous area too. No sooner do we launch an appeal in the Guardian or our sister paper the Lincolnshire Free Press than our cash target is reached.
Sometimes you give generously without us even asking.
Look at the case of Long Sutton pensioner Doris Dossettor, for instance. The 90-year-old was left heartbroken and shocked when her blind pet dog was attacked by a bigger beast in the local park.
Mrs Dossettor was faced with finding £800 from her savings for the vet’s bill after little rescue dog George had a lump ripped out of his tummy.
But only nine days after the Free Press published details of the attack, £630 of that bill has been paid by generous readers.
So please don’t worry about the horrible events of Tuesday evening. South Holland is still a good area with smashing people.