PM joins nationwide clap for the NHS on its birthday

Home UK PM joins nationwide clap for the NHS on its birthday
PM joins nationwide clap for the NHS on its birthday

Boris Johnson has joined people across the UK in clapping to pay tribute to NHS staff on the health service's 72nd anniversary.

Hospital staff gathered outside their places of work to take part in the nationwide round of applause at 5pm on Sunday.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer, Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and the Prince of Wales also joined the tribute.

Image: Members of staff at Leeds General Infirmary participate in the national NHS celebration clap
Protesters give a round of applause to celebrate the 72nd anniversary of the NHS at a gathering in support of the Black Lives Matter movement in London
Image: Protesters give a round of applause to celebrate the 72nd anniversary of the NHS at a gathering in support of the Black Lives Matter movement in London

Members of the public had been encouraged to take part as a way of saying thank you to NHS staff who have worked throughout the coronavirus pandemic.

It follows the weekly nationwide clap for carers events, with those behind the plan hoping it will become an annual tradition.

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The prime minister met NHS workers in the Number 10 garden on Sunday afternoon, while public buildings including the Royal Albert Hall, Blackpool Tower and the Shard were lit up blue in tribute to the health service.

Mr Johnson had previously urged the public to clap for "those who have worked tirelessly and selflessly to help the nation get through this pandemic".

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Earlier in the day, protesters who had gathered in support of the Black Lives Matter movement at Marble Arch in London paused to give a round of applause in celebration of the NHS anniversary.

Liverpool and Aston Villa players had also lined up to clap ahead of their Premier League match at Anfield.

Keir Starmer claps for NHS
Image: Keir Starmer claps for the NHS outside his home
Clap for carers takes place on 72ns birthday of NHS
Image: Nicola Sturgeon joins the nationwide round of applause

Paramedic William Young was among around 25 staff and patients who gathered to clap outside Bridlington Hospital in East Yorkshire.

"I've worked for Yorkshire Ambulance Service for over 12 years now and I've never felt prouder than I have this year," the 38-year-old said.

"The NHS has really stepped up to the COVID-19 pandemic and some of my colleagues have made some tremendous sacrifices.

"I think today's clap has reminded us all that while we are still fighting COVID we have so much to be grateful for in our NHS."

And sharing a photo of himself clapping for the 5pm round of applause, Health Secretary Matt Hancock tweeted: "Fantastic to come together on the NHS's 72nd birthday to once again clap for all our carers. Thank you all for everything you do.''

Mr Johnson was joined outside 10 Downing Street by Annemarie Plas, the woman who came up with the idea of the weekly Clap For Our Carers tributes.

NHS staff outside the Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle, join in the pause for applause to salute the NHS 72nd birthday
Image: NHS staff outside the Royal Victoria Infirmary, Newcastle, join in the pause for applause to salute the NHS 72nd birthday
Members of the public applaud outside Chelsea and Westminster Hospital for the 72nd anniversary of the NHS
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