As we pass the year anniversary of lockdown having started and the nation subsequently shutdown, it's important to reflect on the last year and it's happenings. On 23 March 2020 Boris Johnson outlined measures to stop the spread of Covid-19. Since then, the UK's official death toll has risen from 364 to 126,172.
Whilst we remember lives lost over the past year, we also remember those who have felt pain and experienced loss in other ways. Those unable to express grievances due to the ongoing restrictions; people indirectly affected by the virus, with mass redundancies at an all-time high and many struggling to make ends meet or to see any way to recovery.
We give thanks to those on the frontlines. Our NHS heroes working night and day to treat those who have tested positive with the virus, consistently displaying their vigour when faced with claps instead of pay rises, or even pay cuts - thank you. The supermarket workers who have remained committed to helping the nation, dealing with members of the public and regulating stock to ensure everyone can get what they need - thank you. To any and all of those who have continued to show grit and determination when all feels lost - thank you.
Whilst offering our remembrances and our deepest of sympathies, we must recognise the many ways in which hope prevails now in comparison to where we were this time last year. The NHS' vaccine rollout and conversion of our favourite arenas and venues into vaccination centres means the R rate is falling each week, with infection and death rates subsequently falling, too.
We mark today to reflect on the lives lost, of the industries who have been hit the hardest and who might not make a comeback, but also to look forward in hope of a world post-pandemic. Of a world where we can all come together to celebrate making it through to the end, where we can embrace one another again without restriction or fear of consequence. A world of normality.
Organised by Marie Curie, people are being encouraged to stand on their doorsteps at 20:00 with phones, candles and torches to signify a "beacon of remembrance". We hope to see you there.