Local residents invited to shine a light to remember those lost to coronavirus and mark NHS anniversary

  • 30 June 2020


Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is preparing to mark the 72nd anniversary of the NHS this weekend with a series of events to pay tribute to everyone who has made sacrifices during the coronavirus outbreak and remember those lost.

This year the NHS has faced the biggest challenges in its history as it stepped up in ways never seen before to deliver services differently following lockdown, recruit tens of thousands more staff, returners and volunteers and even build hospitals to respond to the pandemic.

The anniversary - which takes place on Sunday, 5 July - is shared by the social care system which was created at the same time in 1948. It is an opportunity to say thank you to everyone who has helped in the response to the outbreak, for the warmth and respect shown by people across BNSSG to health and care staff and for the efforts made by our communities.

The weekend of events include lighting up landmarks in blue, a final clap of thanks and an invitation to everyone to shine a light in their windows or doorways in memory of those who have sadly lost their lives and the family and friends they leave behind.

Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire CCG Chief Executive, Julia Ross, said:

The NHS could not have achieved all it has over the past six months without the commitment and skills of our people and we are thankful for the recognition they have received. However, the unprecedented challenge facing the NHS would have been made all but impossible without the help and support of countless individuals and organisations. Key workers - from bus drivers and refuse collectors to care givers and shop workers, and the public who followed lockdown rules to help protect the NHS and their communities. We are grateful to everyone who has played their part.

This weekend also marks the anniversary of the social care system. It is a very welcome opportunity to celebrate the incredible and too often overlooked work of our partners in social care. We’re really grateful to our colleagues who have been working tirelessly alongside us throughout the pandemic to keep the population safe, well and independent.

The anniversary will be marked with the events below:

  • On the evening of Saturday, 4 July people are asked to remember all those who have lost their lives by putting a light in their window or on their doorsteps such as a candle, lamp or torch.
  • On Saturday evening, local and national landmarks will be lit up in blue light to remember and also to recognise the NHS anniversary.
  • At 5pm on Sunday, 5 July there will be the biggest, loudest clap for carers and key workers after which everyone is encouraged to thank each other including friends, family, neighbours and others for helping the vulnerable or simply doing the right thing and staying at home during the lockdown.
  • Residents, schools and businesses are encouraged to fill windows, streets and buildings with message of thanks.

Find out more about the anniversary events on the NHS website.