THIS week saw the Clap For Carers ring out across Dorset and the rest of the UK as millions of people stood on their doorsteps to applaud the NHS for the final time.

The founder of the weekly event, Annemarie Plas, a Dutch national living in South London said that Thursday’s show of support should be the last, following concerns the event has become too politicised.

Dorset hospitals have thanked residents for taking part in the weekly event and for the continued support they have received over the last 10 weeks.

Dr Matt Thomas, Medical Director at Poole Hospital said: “A huge thank you to everyone who has clapped for the NHS and others over the past 10 weeks, this amazing support has given us all a real boost in these challenging times.”

When asked whether the Clap for Carers initiative should be continued, the majority of Echo readers agreed that it should be stopped whilst it still had momentum behind it.

Shane Miles said: "It shouldn't be just carers we were supposed to have clapped for and to be honest the clapping shouldn't have started until now.

“All key workers have done an amazing job and should have been given some kind of beneficial treatment or discounts throughout this whole pandemic to say thank you.”

Jemma Slade added: “It was nice, and we’ve done well to do it this long but less and less come out each week now anyway so I think it is time to stop.

“I still appreciate all the doctors, nurses etc. and how hard they work and have been during all this but it’s time to stop.”

However, some people have said they will continue to applaud frontline workers regardless as they say the pandemic is not over yet.

Zoe Rigby and her daughters, five-year-old Elsie and two-year-old Isobel, have stood outside of their house in Christchurch and joined in the applause every Thursday and say they will continue to show their appreciation in their own way.

Zoe said: “We have joined in the clap for carers from the beginning and have done to show our appreciation to our NHS, carers and keyworkers during this difficult time.

“I believe it united us as a country and beyond in the beginning, when on this new age battlefield all seemed bleak and out of control but I do feel it's time to appreciate the efforts in a more private way as we move forward.

“However, if my girls wish to clap, dance or sing by way of thanking our NHS and keyworkers, they will, for as long as they choose to.”