Today we come together as a nation to remember the courage and sacrifice of all those who helped deliver freedom on VE Day. Seventy-five years on, we commemorate and honour the brave men and women of the Second World War. We remember each and every civilian who joined the war effort at home and abroad. Many took risks beyond our imagination to secure our future. And those keeping the home fires burning ensured our country got through the darkest of times. We salute those who served in the British Armed Forces and all who lost their lives: men and women from across the British Isles and across the globe, fighting side by side with our allies to defeat Nazism. And we think of those for whom today brings back painful memories of a dark period that so many of us cannot comprehend. Thank you to all our Armed Forces for what they achieved then, and for everything they continue to achieve today. At 11am today, the country will come together in silence to mark the anniversary of VE Day. It will be a moment of contemplation to honour the heroes of yesterday. At 8pm every Thursday, we now come together to honour heroes: the heroes of today. The healthcare workers and care workers fighting the coronavirus on the frontline. Our battle against COVID-19 doesn’t directly compare with the physical conflicts of the past, but it is another era-defining moment for the world.
And once again, the many of us have so much to say ‘thank you’ for, to so few. Thank you to all the key workers who are helping us through these challenging times. In the 1940s, the men and women of this country supported each other and dreamt of hope until it finally came on 8th May 1945. So too we can support each other today. And remember there is always hope of a better tomorrow.