Why we should make this Thursday's Clap for Key Workers the loudest to date as founder says it should be the last - Laura Collins, YEP Editor

Over the last 10 weeks, the world around us and our individual routines have been transformed.

Monday, 25th May 2020, 6:00 am
Youngsters in Leeds show their support for the NHS.

We’ve all had to start thinking differently about life as we know it in the face of a silent killer.

We’ve spent endless weeks in our own homes – and for some it has been even longer as they retreated to their sanctuaries to shield vulnerable loved ones.

But one thing is certain and that is the monotony of our new daily routines.

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A chalked wall in Leeds to show appreciation for key workers.

It’s almost akin to a scene out of the film Groundhog Day. As we begin another day so much like the last, even the most simple things are easy to forget – right down to something as straightforward as what day it is. The weekends and the weekdays all too easily blur into one another.

But out of this strange state, a new and uplifting tradition was born.

Every Thursday at 8pm, thousands of people across the country have joined in with an event that has really captured the nation’s imagination.

It is a simple gesture but one that has meant so very much to so many people.

An NHS mural in Pontefract.

This small act of kindness has seen people stop what they are doing, open their doors and clap loudly for those key workers who are on the frontline in the country’s battle with coronavirus.

The streets have been filled with music, children have banged loudly with pans and spoons, and even the occasional firework has sparkled in the sky.

We’ve seen the emergency services show solidarity outside our hospitals with their blue lights flashing during the clapping.

This gesture of thanks also reminds us of the fragility of life and the thousands of people who have succumbed to Covid-19.

As we head into our 10th week, the founder of the Clap for Carers event has said that this Thursday’s should be the last one to be held.

Yoga teacher Annemarie Plas came up with the idea as a way to show appreciation to those on the frontline.

The first one, which started on March 26, was meant to be a one-off show of gratitude but over the weeks it has grown in popularity.

And Ms Plas has said that in order for it have the most impact,the event should stop while it is at its peak.

The mum who founded the movement also suggested that the clap might now have become politicised.

She said in a recent interview: “I think the narrative is starting to change and I don’t want the clap to be negative.”

However, Ms Plas has suggested resurrecting it 2021 to mark a year since the coronavirus outbreak.

So if this week is set to be the final clap for our NHS, care workers and key workers, then let’s make sure that it is the loudest to date.

It is a humble reminder that people out there do care about others and want to show their appreciation to those who are dealing with the trauma of being on the frontline.

As we emerge into a “new world order”, there are certain things we should look to hold on to make us a better, more caring society.

And the many amazing acts of solidarity and kindness we have seen right across Leeds must be among them