The UK has erupted in applause in a national salute to honour the hardworking NHS staff who are trying to battle coronavirus.
People took to their balconies and doorsteps to clap and cheer, while vehicles sounded their horns at 8pm on Thursday evening as a gesture of thanks to frontline healthcare heroes.
The Clap For Carers campaign, which started online, was staged because “during these unprecedented times they need to know we are grateful”, according to the organisers.
That was emotional 💙— NHS (@NHSuk) March 26, 2020
My son is working in A&E at this very minute and I can guarantee you, at a time when many @NHSuk staff are feeling battle-weary, hearing the nation #ClapForCarers will have given them all a huge, aural hug.— Sian Williams (@sianwilliams100) March 26, 2020
Amazing scenes NHS we fucking love and adore you all LG x— Liam Gallagher (@liamgallagher) March 26, 2020
Ok. That was a genuinely gorgeous, warm, unifying moment. The cheers, claps & whoops were like being at a gig. I was so honoured to say a big thank you to my neighbour who is a health worker, but also because she lent me her corkscrew earlier this evening. #clapforourcarers— Ayesha Hazarika (@ayeshahazarika) March 26, 2020
I didn’t know that a clap could make me cry, make me feel so connected even for a short time, to everyone out there, in the dark, or lit by the glow of their homes, a tide of love and gratitude for every single one of you in the NHS.— Poorna Bell (@poornabell) March 26, 2020
Hearing my neighbors shout out and clap for the NHS beautiful ❤️❤️❤️ pic.twitter.com/yebWmDJTSU— John Boyega (@JohnBoyega) March 26, 2020
Well they can’t be in any doubt now about what they mean to us! Brilliant everyone. 👏👏👏 https://t.co/Wjz9fkGOoy— Andy Burnham (@AndyBurnhamGM) March 26, 2020
Bloody hell. The clapping. Our street alive, clattering with it. Felt real, and new, and deep, and emotional. Fuck. Powerful. x— Ian Martin (@IanMartin) March 26, 2020
On behalf of the whole country, I want to thank all the incredible nurses, doctors, NHS support staff & carers who are working flat out to fight coronavirus 👏 #ClapForOurCarers #ClapForNHS— Boris Johnson #StayHomeSaveLives (@BorisJohnson) March 26, 2020
To help them, and protect the NHS, we need everyone to stay at home #StayHomeSaveLives pic.twitter.com/kpdQ5KHQiy
Blimey. That was a genuinely special moment. Now let's make sure we fight for the people on the front line to be paid well and treated properly - in times of crisis and not: cleaners, nurses, doctors, care workers, paramedics, the lot #clapforNHS— Owen Jones🌹 (@OwenJones84) March 26, 2020
The national round of applause came after the unveiling of a £9 billion package of support which will see the government give millions of self-employed people a grant worth up to £2,500 a month.
Boris Johnson was joined by Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak outside 10 Downing Street as they took part in the national salute.
And a video was posted on the Kensingtonroyal Instagram account showed Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis clapping to thank all those healthcare staff “working tirelessly” to help those affected by Covid-19.
The Wembley Arch, the Principality Stadium, the Royal Albert Hall and Lincoln Cathedral were among some of the landmarks which were lit up in blue during the salute.
It is part of the #lightitblue campaign which has been organised by members of the events and entertainment industry as a way to say thank you.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson tweeted: “On behalf of the whole country, I want to thank all the incredible nurses, doctors, NHS support staff & carers who are working flat out to fight coronavirus 👏 #ClapForOurCarers #ClapForNHS To help them, and protect the NHS, we need everyone to stay at home #StayHomeSaveLives.”
The Queen has said the country is “enormously thankful” for the commitment of all those working in science, health and the emergency and public services.
In the message posted on the royal family’s official Instagram account, the Queen said: “We are enormously thankful for the expertise and commitment of our scientists, medical practitioners and emergency and public services.”
The post featured a video of the Earl and Countess of Wessex and their children Lady Louise Windsor and Viscount Severn, who all clapped after Edward paid tribute to workers.
He said: “So from all of us just a huge thank you to so many of you working on the frontline – you’re really appreciated keep up the fantastic work.”
This article originally appeared on HuffPost.