PM backs plans for national day of reflection to mark first lockdown anniversary


The Prime Minister has backed plans for a national day of reflection to mark the anniversary of the first coronavirus lockdown.

Charity Marie Curie is planning the day for March 23, when those who have died during the pandemic will be remembered.

The National Day of Reflection, which the charity hopes will become an annual event, will see a nationwide minute of silence at 12 noon, followed by bells tolling at 12:01.

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Prominent buildings and iconic landmarks will also light up at 8pm across the UK.

The Prime Minister will be marking the minute of silence privately on March 23.

Boris Johnson said: “This has been an incredibly difficult year for our country. My thoughts are with all those who have lost loved ones, and who have not been able to pay tribute to them in the way they would have wanted.

“As we continue to make progress against the virus, I want to thank people for the sacrifices they continue to make, and hope they can look forward to being reunited with loved ones as restrictions are cautiously eased.”

Over 110 charities, businesses and emergency services, as well as political leaders Keir Starmer, Nicola Sturgeon and Mark Drakeford, First Minister for Wales, have also backed the plans.

Leader of the Opposition, Keir Starmer, said: “The National Day of Reflection is a moment to remember the 125,000 people lost to coronavirus over the last year. We must never forget what that number represents: mothers, fathers, grandparents and partners. Behind every death are bereaved families and friends, many of whom have been unable to grieve normally.

“Despite the terrible impact of this pandemic, the past year has also brought communities closer together. Moments like this can send a powerful message that, as a society, we are there for each other. We must ensure this spirit of national solidarity lives on, as a tribute to those we have lost.”


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The author Lee Peart

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