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A national minute’s silence to remember the victims of the pandemic to be held at 12pm today

Today, Tuesday 23 March there will be a minute’s silence at 12pm to remember everyone who has died during the pandemic.

People will then be encouraged to light candles from 8pm and leave them on their doorsteps.

Community-led activities, such as virtual choirs and services will also take place.

The observance, organised by charity Marie Curie has been backed by Boris Johnson and other political leaders, to mark the anniversary of lockdown measures being introduced.

According to the latest figures, more than 146,000 people have died in the UK with Covid listed on their death certificate during the pandemic.

Marie Curie said: “Today, let's come together to reflect on our collective loss, support those who’ve been bereaved, and hope for a brighter future.”

“Behind the statistics and whatever the cause, every death has been devastating for the people left behind.”

“There are still tough times ahead, as the death toll continues to rise. This annual day will give us all time to pause and think about this unprecedented loss we’re facing, and support each other through grief in the years to come.”

One year of Covid-19

The Prime Minister has said he plans to observe the minute’s silence privately.

Mr Johnson said: “This has been an incredibly difficult year for our country. My thoughts are with all those who have lost loved ones, and who have not been able to pay tribute to them in the way they would have wanted.”

“As we continue to make progress against the virus, I want to thank people for the sacrifices they continue to make, and hope they can look forward to being reunited with loved ones as restrictions are cautiously eased.”

What time is the minute silence?

A national minute’s silence to remember the victims will be held at 12pm on Tuesday 23 March, followed by a bell toll.

People are then being encouraged to stand on their doorsteps at 8pm with phones, candles and torches to signify a “beacon of remembrance”.

London’s skyline will turn yellow with landmarks including the London Eye, Trafalgar Square and Wembley Stadium lighting up at nightfall. Other notable buildings that will be illuminated include Cardiff castle and Belfast City Hall.

Boris Johnson to address the nation at 5pm.

Boris Johnson will address the nation at a press conference from Downing Street this evening - on the anniversary of the first Covid-19 coronavirus lockdown.

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