Great Britain

Queen to award pandemic heroes with special gongs in delayed birthday honours


HEROES of the pandemic will be honoured with special gongs in the Queen’s delayed birthday honours list next week.

Hundreds of doctors, nurses, care workers, volunteers and fundraisers will be recognised for their crucial role in the Covid crisis.

Boris Johnson was stunned when he learned of their bravery and dedication and declared: “They are an inspiration to us all.”

NHS staff who helped save the PM’s life when he was in intensive care at London’s St Thomas’s Hospital could be among the recipients.

The honours list was due out in June but was postponed to allow nominations for people who made outstanding contributions in tackling the virus.

Their names will appear alongside recipients who were already due to be recognised for other achievements before the outbreak.

At the height of the lockdown in May, the PM called for the public to nominate frontline and community heroes who had gone above and beyond the call of duty.

Mr Johnson said: “As we all redouble our efforts to control the virus, protect the NHS and save lives this Winter, I am pleased we have an opportunity to recognise those who have given so much to this country already.

“The Coronavirus pandemic is the greatest health challenge in our lifetime.

We all have to play our part, but the dedication, courage and compassion seen from these recipients, be it responding on the frontline or out in their communities providing support to the most vulnerable, is an inspiration to us all.

“We owe them a debt of gratitude and the 2020 Queen’s Birthday honours will be the first of many occasions where we can thank them as a nation”.

These recipients - like fundraising legend Captain Sir Tom Moore, who was knighted by the Queen in a unique outdoor ceremony in July - are outstanding examples of the contributions which are still being made right across the UK.

Downing Street said the honours system was just one of the ways in which tribute will be paid to people across the country for their efforts in response to Covid-19.

Hero paratrooper awarded the Victoria Cross by Her Majesty the Queen for risking his life in battle with the Taliban

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