Coronavirus

Video: People around Ireland applaud NHS workers ahead of coronavirus surge

People in Belfast taking part in applauding carers and NHS workers last night. Picture by Hugh Russell 

People across Northern Ireland have taken part in a mass round of applause for the frontline healthcare heroes who are risking their own lives battling the coronavirus pandemic.

The Clap For Carers initiative saw residents applauding from their doorsteps, windows and balconies at 8pm, with some venturing into the streets, and motorists joining in by tooting their horns.

Among those who joined the clapping was a pastor who is recovering in hospital after spending a week in intensive care with coronavirus.

Father-of-three Mark McClurg, from Co Down, posted a video of him applauding from his hospital bed, with oxygen lines attached to his nose.

“Thank you so much, thank you all the NHS staff,” he said.

“We love our NHS, we love you all, thank you or saving our lives.”

Streets across the north echoed with the sound of clapping on Thursday evening and the landmark Belfast City Hall was illuminated in NHS blue to mark the moment.

People in Belfast taking part in applauding carers and NHS workers last night. Picture by Hugh Russell 

People in Belfast taking part in applauding carers and NHS workers last night. Picture by Hugh Russell 

People in Belfast taking part in applauding carers and NHS workers last night. Picture by Hugh Russell 

People in Belfast taking part in applauding carers and NHS workers last night. Picture by Hugh Russell 

People in Belfast taking part in applauding carers and NHS workers last night. Picture by Hugh Russell 

In the Republic of Ireland, proceedings in the Dail parliament in Dublin were briefly paused to allow politicians to join in the round of applause for the country’s healthcare workers.

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar was among TDs who broke off from debating emergency coronavirus legislation to show their gratitude.

There were similar scenes on streets through the state as people said thanks to the frontline medics dealing with the pandemic in Ireland.

In Scotland, the Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall and their staff all separately joined in with a round of applause at Birkhall.

Charles, who has tested positive for coronavirus, and Camilla are isolating from each other and their small number of staff.

Clapping also took place at Windsor Castle where the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh are staying.

Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis were among those applauding the NHS as part of the Clap For Carers initiative.

A video of the three young royals clapping was posted on the Kensingtonroyal Instagram account.

The caption said: “To all the doctors, nurses, carers, GPs, pharmacists, volunteers and other NHS staff working tirelessly to help those affected by #COVID19: thank you. #ClapForOurCarers #ClapForCarers #ThankYouNHS #ClapForNHS”

The footage of George, Charlotte and Louis was taken by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

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, as the royal family joined the Clap for Carers public display.

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.”

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