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Clap for Carers to return to Suffolk and Essex this weekend

PUBLISHED: 17:44 02 July 2020 | UPDATED: 09:59 03 July 2020

People are being urged to Clap for the NHS this weekend to mark the service's 72nd birthday  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

People are being urged to Clap for the NHS this weekend to mark the service's 72nd birthday Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Sarah Lucy Brown

People across Suffolk and Essex are being urged to get outside and clap for the NHS to mark the service’s 72nd birthday.

The weekly NHS claps became a way of communicating with neighbours during the early stages of lockdown  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNThe weekly NHS claps became a way of communicating with neighbours during the early stages of lockdown Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

It is hoped this Sunday, July 5, will be marked with the biggest ever clap for carers, as people across the country show their support for healthcare workers throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

The once weekly claps became an iconic part of coronavirus lockdown, with people around the country standing at their front doors armed with pots and pans to make some noise for those keeping the nation safe – before they came to an end in late May.

Now, UNISON is calling on people to return to their front gardens to mark the 72nd birthday of the NHS, and to give one final thank you to healthcare, care and key workers for their service since the outbreak began.

The clap will begin at 5pm, while people are also asked to put a candle on their windowsill on Saturday evening to commemorate those who have lost their lives to the virus.

UNISON Eastern acting regional secretary, Tim Roberts, said: “Across the East of England, just as across the rest of the UK, communities and families have been devastated by the virus. Too many lives have been taken, too many loved ones kept apart and everyone is left fearing for the future.

“But we can come together, as demonstrated by the weekly claps from our doorsteps and balconies showing our appreciation for those who’ve been keeping us safe.

“This is an opportunity to give thanks and thoughts for all those who’ve lost their lives, as well as recognising the wonders of the health service, social care sector and other essential public services.”

Mr Roberts added he hopes people will remain careful and act responsibly, with the birthday weekend coinciding with the reopening of pubs. He also hopes people will be able to raise a drink to the beloved service.

He said: “We’re living through troubled times and sadly we’re not out of the woods yet.

“As the lockdown eases, we must all remain careful. No one wants to spoil anyone’s fun as pubs reopen but behaving sensibly is vital, if the NHS is to be protected and the virus is to be kept at bay.

“Overwhelming our emergency services is the last thing that’s needed when this weekend is all about celebrating and showing appreciation for our wonderful NHS.”


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