‘Commemoration commission’ will look into national Covid-19 memorial

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·3 min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
Boris Johnson
Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson has announced a "commemoration commission" will be formed to consider how to remember both the victims and the heroes of the Covid-19 pandemic, amid calls for a national memorial.

The Prime Minister made the announcement in the House of Commons on Wednesday as he also revealed a full independent public inquiry into the pandemic will take place next spring.

"I know that communities across our whole country will want to find ways of commemorating what we have all been through," Mr Johnson said. "So the Government will support their efforts by establishing a UK Commission on Covid Commemoration."

Mr Johnson has long argued that there should be a commemoration for the victims of the Covid crisis at some point, expressing his support whenever asked.

However, as of yet no detailed Government proposals have been put forward about what form it should take or where it should be located.

These are expected to be some of the issues that the new commemoration commission will consider. Others include how the memorial should be funded, how a winning design should be picked and what date should be picked for its opening.

Official Government statistics show that 127,629 people have died from Covid-19 in the UK. That figure is the number of people who had Covid in the 28 days preceding their death.

Mr Johnson made clear he wanted the commission to look at both commemorating Covid victims and praising those who have sacrificed in the battle against the virus.

The Prime Minister said: "This national endeavour - above party politics - will remember the loved ones we have lost; honour the heroism of those who saved lives and the courage of frontline workers who kept our country going; celebrate the genius of those who created the vaccines; and commemorate the small acts of kindness and the daily sacrifice of millions who stayed at home, buying time for our scientists to come to our rescue."

Downing Street has not named which individuals will be appointed to the commission or who will be the body’s chairman.

It is possible figures from the charity, health and business sectors will be included, as well as leaders from religious communities.

Government ministers will have to green-light whatever proposals are put forward for them to come into fruition. Mr Johnson has previously said: “Coronavirus has taken a heart-breaking toll on families across the UK - it is right that we come together to honour all those we have lost.”

Temporary commemorations linked to the Covid-19 pandemic have been seen in the UK and around the world since the crisis emerged during the winter of 2019/20.

A minute’s silence was held across the UK on March 23 to mark a year to the day that the country was put into lockdown to limit the virus’s spread.

In America, candles were placed along Washington DC’s reflecting pool during Joe Biden’s inauguration as US president, with the candles representing those who died of Covid-19.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting