Mayor of London Sadiq Khan. Photograph: London Assembly

A “living memorial” to Londoners who have lost their lives to Covid-19 was opened earlier this week in Stratford by Mayor Sadiq Khan.

The London Blossom Garden at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park commemorates residents who have died during the pandemic, featuring 33 blossom trees to represent the capital’s 32 boroughs and the City of London.

Khan also announced the launch of a bereavement support programme that will direct Londoners to advice and support and that will begin with a public awareness campaign.

He said: “This new public garden is a lasting living memorial in recognition of the impact that Covid has had, and continues to have, on our city. It is a place to join together to remember the more than 19,000 Londoners who have tragically died, to reflect on our own experiences of the pandemic, to highlight how this virus has disproportionately impacted many of our communities, and to pay tribute to the ongoing efforts of our key workers.

“It continues to be an incredibly difficult time for Londoners as we battle the virus, and I want all those who have experienced loss to know that there is support available to them. Nothing will make losing someone you love any easier, but we want Londoners to know they are not alone. We are here for you, as a city.”

Details of the “In loving memory of Londoners lost” campaign, as well as links to advice and support can be found on the Thrive LDN website.

There is also an ongoing campaign to have a permanent memorial to Covid-19 victims inside St Paul’s Cathedral, while the London Assembly unanimously voted earlier this year in favour of supporting an emergency services cenotaph in London to pay tribute to NHS and emergency service workers.

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