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Important Moments

The Prime Minister

The Prime Minister during the COVID-19 outbreak as Boris Johnson. He had been elected as Prime Minister after a general election on 12th December 2019. He had promised to 'get Brexit done'. Brexit had dominated the political agenda for three and a half years. On 31st January 2020 the UK left the European Union and began an eleven month transition period. People expected the transition negotiations to dominate politics but the battle against Coronavirus soon took over.

 

Boris Johnson started to give daily coronavirus briefings on 16th March 2020 to brief the country about its response to the virus.

 

On Friday 27th March, it was announced that Johnson had tested positive for COVID-19. His symptoms were described as mild and that he would be isolating for seven days. By 2nd April it was clear that his symptoms were worsening and by the afternoon of 5th April he was taken to hospital (St. Thomas' Hospital in London. The following day he was moved to intensive care and was there for three days. He was then moved back to a ward. 

 

Johnson was sent home on Sunday 12th April. That evening he published a message on his Twitter account where he thanked everyone in the NHS and shared the names of some doctors and nurses who gave him care. In particular he singled out two nurses who looked after him - Jenny McGee, from New Zealand, and Luis Pitarma, from Portugal.

The Queen

On 11th April 2020 Queen Elizabeth II gave her first ever Easter message.

 

It is tradition for the reigning monarch to give a Christmas speech which is broadcast on Christmas Day each year. During the COVID-19 crisis, The Queen broadcast a speech on the day before Easter Sunday, the 11th April. This historic speech was intended to add further weight to the government's message to stay at home and also to give people hope and reassurance on the significant Christian celebration of Easter.

 

She said the discovery of the risen Christ on the first Easter Day gave his followers new hope and fresh purpose, adding that we could all take heart from this. Wishing everyone of all faiths and denominations a blessed Easter, she said: "May the living flame of the Easter hope be a steady guide as we face the future."

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