Wigan Council and borough hospital trust taking part in National Day of Reflection on Covid anniversary

The authorities will pay their respects to everyone affected by the Covid-19 pandemic on Tuesday, a year since the first national lockdown began.

Friday, 19th March 2021, 5:19 pm
Council leader Coun David Molyneux and WWL chief executive Silas Nicholls
Council leader Coun David Molyneux and WWL chief executive Silas Nicholls

A minute’s silence will be held on Believe Square and virtually at 12pm, giving residents the opportunity to reflect and remember those who have lost their lives to coronavirus.

The Tree of Hope outside Wigan Infirmary will be lit up yellow and Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh (WWL) Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust chief executive Silas Nicholls and chairman Robert Armstrong will attend a short ceremony alongside leaders from Wigan the Council and NHS Wigan Borough CCG.

NHS staff and patients will also be able to hang messages of reflection, memorial or hope on trees in the chapel and prayer rooms at the borough's hospitals, with WWL’s chaplaincy service preparing to offer support to anyone who needs it during the anniversary.

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In the evening, prominent buildings and landmarks will be illuminated in yellow, including the Face of Wigan and Leigh Town Hall in the borough.

Leader of Wigan Council, Coun David Molyneux, said: “In March 2020, I don’t think anyone could have predicted how long this pandemic would last, nor the havoc the virus would wreak on our lives and on the lives of those we love. The last 12 months have been extremely difficult, and it’s important we take the time to reflect and recover.

“Council staff, our public sector partners, community groups and volunteers have worked incredibly hard to keep residents safe and services running and for that we are incredibly grateful. Our residents have demonstrated their resilience with kindness, compassion, and a strong sense of community spirit.”

Mr Nicholls said: “Although we may not need a reminder of what we have faced and overcome, there is always a need to take the time to reflect on how we have come together, adapted and found ways to embrace this new type of world, and to remember those we have sadly lost too soon due to this deadly and unforgiving virus.

“Many of us, and our patients’ families, have been unable to properly say goodbye to loved ones or to grieve. The National Day of Reflection is a moment for us all to remember and grieve, but also to celebrate the lives of everyone we have lost during this time and show support for our families, friends and colleagues.

“Not only have we come together as a WWL family, but also as a borough, whether that’s through ensuring all staff, patients and public are protected and kept safe through our borough-wide vaccination programme, or through the deployment of staff to support our organisations in their time of need.

“If people are planning to take a moment to reflect, we have to stress that this is done in line with the government’s Covid-19 guidelines, as the continued safety of our staff, patients and the wider public remains our continued priority.

“Remember, we are all in this together.”

Residents are invited to leave tributes to those who have lost their lives during the pandemic in Wigan Borough’s Book of Remembrance.

To sign the online book, visit www.wigan.gov.uk/Resident/Births-Marriage-Deaths/Deaths/Remembrance/Book-of-Remembrance.aspx

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