Households across the nation paid tribute to the hardworking NHS staff across the country at 8pm last night, uniting to praise carers who are currently working to fight the pandemic.
#ClapForCarers and #ClapForNHS were trending topics on Twitter as millions across the UK applauded staff from their doorsteps, gardens, windows and balconies.
The NHS also headed to the social media platform to describe the display of respect as “emotional.”
That was emotional 💙
— NHS (@NHSuk) March 26, 2020
The UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak, and members of the Royal Family also joined the country in the round of applause.
Creator of the UK’s National Motivation Day and Celebrity PR Mayah Riaz was fully in support of the movement, saying: “I think it was fantastic, really brought the communities together,” adding: “I don’t think anything has brought the community together like this since the Olympics.”
This tribute comes at a time when the Prime Minister is urging members of the public to come forward and volunteer, to aid the NHS through the pandemic. 560,000 UK nationals answered the call of Health Secretary Matt Hancock, who initially asked for 250,000, but has since increased the target to 750,000.
On behalf of the whole country, I want to thank all the incredible nurses, doctors, NHS support staff & carers who are working flat out to fight coronavirus 👏 #ClapForOurCarers #ClapForNHS
To help them, and protect the NHS, we need everyone to stay at home #StayHomeSaveLives pic.twitter.com/kpdQ5KHQiy
— Boris Johnson #StayHomeSaveLives (@BorisJohnson) March 26, 2020
27-year-old Midwife Lauren McBryde, who works at The University Hospital of North Durham was flattered by the tribute last night, having worked on busy wards throughout her training and employment with the NHS.
“I think it was a lovely way to bring people together and it was really heartwarming to hear all of the applause,” said Mrs McBryde, adding: “It was a fantastic way to thank all the NHS, police, ambulance, firefighters, carers and supermarket workers for their hard work at the moment.”
However, many on Twitter found the tribute to be ironic, citing cuts made by the Conservative party to the NHS while leading the country. Last year the Labour party also said that 17,000 hospital beds had been cut since the Tories came into power in 2010.
Cover photography: Ryan Lim