As well as applauding, participants will be encouraged to come together for a drink or a cup of tea with family, friends and neighbours to reflect on the bonds that have sustained us in recent months, while observing the latest social distancing guidance.

As part of a weekend of commemorations, people will be invited to put a light in their windows on the evening of Saturday, July 4th in remembrance of those we have lost during the pandemic. Public buildings will be lit up in NHS blue, including the Royal Albert Hall, Blackpool Tower, the Shard and the Wembley Arch.

Sir Simon Stevens, NHS Chief Executive, said: “No health service, not even the NHS, could have coped alone with this coronavirus pandemic.

“From bus drivers and teachers to care staff and food retailers and, of course, the public who took action to stay at home to stop infection spreading, everyone played their part.

“The NHS’s anniversary this year not only offers the opportunity for us to say thank you to the nation, but for us all to come together at 5pm to pause and recognise all the work which has taken place in the last months and say a heartfelt thank you.”

The Premier League, Scouts, Girl Guiding, WI, and the British Paralympics Association are among the organisations supporting the initiative.

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