One year on Brent remembers the loved ones lost during the pandemic

19 March 2021

A National Day of Reflection is being held on 23 March – the anniversary of the UK going into the first national lockdown – to remember all those who have sadly passed away during the pandemic and to show support for families who are grieving.

The council are encouraging residents to get involved with the campaign, which is being led by Marie Curie, to pay tribute to the 835* Brent residents and thousands more across the UK who have lost their lives due to Covid-19.

The National Day of Reflection includes a minute's silence at midday (12noon) to reflect on those who have died; people are encouraged to put daffodils (fresh, drawn or crafted) in windows as a symbol of hope; and online talks featuring people who are bereaved, celebrities and expert panellists sharing experiences and answering questions. As night falls, the nation will appear on their doorsteps with candles, torches or simply lights from their mobile phones - for a minute of silence in the evening, sharing a beacon of support in these incredibly tough times.

Brent Council will be lighting up the Civic Centre in yellow on 23 March as a symbol of remembrance and residents are also invited to sign the online book of condolence to share memories and stories of those loved ones lost.

Mayor of Brent, Cllr Ernest Ezeajughi, said:

“It’s been a year since the start of one of the most difficult times many of us will have ever faced. I’m grateful that there is a light at the end of the tunnel and hopefully brighter times ahead with the rollout of the vaccine, but there’s no denying the hole that this virus has left in our community.

“Brent has been one of the hardest hit areas in the whole country from this virus. Too many of us have lost mums, dads, grandparents, brothers, sisters, friends and neighbours. I have lost loved ones, and know many of my council colleagues and staff members have too. As a borough we’ve also all felt the impact of the passing of people like Delroy Washington, whose life and contribution to the history of reggae is recognised by so many here and around the world.

“This is a day to remember all those we’ve lost and celebrate their lives. It will give communities a moment to grieve and us the chance to show support for our families, friends and colleagues who are grieving too. There are lots of different ways to get involved so please do what you can and help mark this important occasion.”

You can find out more about the National Day of Reflection and sign-up to one of the online talks by visiting the Marie Curie website. If you would like to share what you are doing as part of the day on social media, please remember to tag #DayofReflection.

You can also share memories or stories of those you’ve lost through signing the online book of condolence.

*Data correct as of 16 March.