NHS staff who died amid Covid-19 remembered in candlelit vigil at Downing Street

NHS staff and campaigners took part in a candlelit procession for those who have died with coronavirus Credit: PA Wire/PA Images

Dozens of people including doctors have taken part in a candlelit vigil to remember those who have lost their lives amid Covid-19 and to mark the upcoming 72nd anniversary of the NHS.

The People’s Assembly teamed up with Health Campaigns Together, Keep Our NHS Public and We Own It to organise the socially distanced vigil in London on Friday evening.

Around 50 NHS staff and campaigners carried one lantern to represent every 1,000 people who have died with Covid-19.

NHS and health care workers who have died during the coronavirus pandemic.

The procession began at St Thomas’ Hospital and proceeded across Westminster Bridge before heading to Downing Street, where doctors and health workers read out all the names of their NHS colleagues who have died during a 20-minute candlelit vigil.

Ramona McCartney, national organiser at the People’s Assembly, said: “It was very sombre and emotional.

“We are coming up to the 72nd anniversary for the NHS and there will be celebrations, but we think it’s really important to throw attention to the ways in which the Government has mishandled the situation and lots of people have lost their lives unfortunately.

NHS staff and campaigners outside Downing Street reading out the names of NHS staff who have died as a result of coronavirus Credit: Jonathan Brady/PA

“To see the NHS staff reading out the names, it was very moving.

“It was a real moment of reflection and bearing light to an absolute tragedy that could have been avoided.”

Figures from last month show more than 300 NHS and social care workers have died during the pandemic.