A memorial service will be held at Manchester Cathedral this week to pay tribute to victims of coronavirus (COVID19) in Greater Manchester.
The memorial is to be held at 11:00am on Thursday.
In order to allow for necessary social distancing, a maximum of 70 people will be attending in person, but the service will also be streamed online.
An online book of remembrance has also been opened.
The Dean of Manchester Cathedral said that this Thursday’s memorial service would be a chance to “honour” loved ones at a time when normal funerals have not been possible, and he added that the online book of remembrance, which has been organised with the help of Greater Manchester Combined Authority, would be “a permanent record.”
Rogers Govinder, who is leading the service on Thursday, said: “The pandemic has taken the lives of so many who are dear to us. Worse still, we have not been able to provide normal funeral gatherings, so people have not been able to provide that comfort and sharing in loss that is a normal part of bereavement.”
“It is very important for people to have an opportunity to remember their loved ones.”
“We don’t know when this pandemic will end and this is an opportunity for grieving folk to honour them.”
Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, said that the service will also allow people to pay particular tribute to frontline health and social care staff who put themselves at risk and “too often paid the ultimate price through their care for others”.
Mr Burnham said he hoped every person who died from the virus in Greater Manchester would be remembered.
He added: “We will never forget what they did.”