Source: British Parliament News
04 July 2020
The Houses of Parliament was among tens of national landmarks to light up in blue to celebrate the 72nd birthday of the NHS this Saturday.
This year’s anniversary was one of thanks to health service staff who have worked so hard to care for patients suffering from COVID-19 – but also one of remembrance for all those who have died during the pandemic.
Commons Speaker: “Our NHS staff have been the heroes of the hour”
Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Speaker of the House of Commons, said: “Day after day for the last four months, our NHS staff have been the heroes of the hour – looking after our friends and family at very great risk to themselves.
“I am delighted we can join in the national celebration of their fearlessness, their dedication and sheer brilliance, while paying tribute to the many lives lost and the families that mourn them.”
Lords Speaker: “In these challenging times we have seen the best of our NHS”
Lord Fowler, Speaker of the House of Lords, said: “I am very pleased that we in Parliament are able to join with the rest of the nation in thanking NHS staff for their tireless dedication during the current crisis, as well as remembering those who have lost loved ones.
“In these challenging times we have seen the best of our NHS and the brilliant staff who make it what it is. As I remember from my time as Health Secretary, we owe the most enormous debt to all those working inside the health service.”
Celebrating the NHS’ 72nd birthday
The Houses of Parliament were lit up in NHS blue from 21:30 on Saturday, 4 July. Other public buildings that followed suit include: 10 Downing Street, the Royal Albert Hall, London Eye, National Gallery, the Shard, White Hart Lane, Wembley Stadium, Blackpool Tower, Chorley Clock Tower and Birmingham Library.
Members of the public were asked to put a light in their windows on Saturday night to remember those who have died.
On Sunday, 5 July, the whole country was asked to pause for applause at 17:00 to say ‘thank you’ to the NHS and other key workers.
Broadcasters suspended normal transmissions at 5pm to mark the moment – and people were encouraged to have a drink or a cup of tea with family, friends and neighbours to reflect on the bonds that sustained them in recent months.
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