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Landmarks including Penshaw Monument and South Shields Town Hall to be lit up for NHS 70th birthday

Penshaw Monument.
Penshaw Monument.

Landmark across the North East will be lit up blue to help the NHS celebrate as it turns 70 this summer.

The big day is July 5 and events are being organised by and for staff, hospital trusts and healthcare organisations to mark the seventieth birthday in style.

South Shields Town Hall.

South Shields Town Hall.

As part of the celebrations a number of landmarks across the North will be lighting up in blue on the evening of the 5th July to say ‘Happy Birthday’ to the NHS and to recognise its special place in our lives.

Landmarks in the North East which will be used include Penshaw Monument in Sunderland, as well as the Magistrates building in the city's Keel Square, while South Shields Town Hall will also be lit up.

Gateshead's Millennium Bridge and Newcastle's Civic Centre will take part as well.

NHS England’s Medical Director for Cumbria and the North East, Professor Chris Gray, said: “We would love more buildings across the North to get involved and to light up blue on the evening of July 5.

"We are calling on churches, mosques, castles, historic homes and any buildings in towns, cities and villages to get involved and light up blue if they have the facilities to do so.”

Councillor Michael Mordey, deputy leader of Sunderland City Council, said: “We are delighted to be joining with towns and cities across the region to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the NHS.

"In Sunderland we’ll be lighting up Penshaw Monument, which is cared for by the National Trust, and the Magistrates Building in Keel Square.

“The founding of the NHS was one of this country’s greatest achievements.

“As well as its free health care, it has played a major part in eradicating once common diseases such as polio and helped pioneer new medical treatments for many people.”

Professor Gray added: “We also want the public to help us celebrate and get involved by taking photographs of the lit up buildings on the 5th July and sharing across social media with the hashtags #NHS70 #LightUpBlue.”