Honouring Heroes of Past and Present in the ‘Big Picnic for Hope’


Our Cathedral is uniting with others across the country in a project to remember heroes of the past and present as part of the Big Picnic for Hope

This Friday is the 75th anniversary of VE Day and Liverpool Cathedral would’ve been welcoming people to commemorate the end of Second World War. Instead, while the nation is staying at home, the Cathedral is uniting with others across the country in a project to remember heroes of the past and present as part of the Big Picnic for Hope.

The Big Picnic for Hope is a way for households to be part of a virtual get together on 8 May while remembering those who have kept our country safe in the past and now in the present. It’s another opportunity to say thank you for the incredible effort and sacrifice being made by our key workers from carers, delivery personnel, grocery workers and public transport workers to medical researchers and frontline NHS staff. We must also not forget the remarkable collective effort of the nation to play our part and stay at home.

People can stay at home, to picnic indoors or in their gardens, and to join friends and families, connect online then if they can afford it, donate towards providing another individual or family having food in their house. 

Liverpool Cathedral is supporting Micah Liverpool, Rev Canon Dr Ellen Loudon, Director of Social Justice and Canon Chancellor said:

“The Big Picnic for Hope is a fun way to join with other people around the country virtually and commemorate VE Day but at the heart of the initiative is a reflection that many people will be finding life particularly difficult with many struggling to put food on the table. Last week Micah Liverpool gave out over 290 emergency food parcels, so we’re asking people across our city to give what they can afford to help people in need while taking part."

“At the same time 8 May 2020 is still a national bank holiday and many people will be missing the fact that they’re not able to see people they want to see or visit the places they'd like to. The Big Picnic for Hope is an occasion to share whether it's from inside your home, or in your garden. By coming together, having a picnic and a conversation we can swap our stories, memories and experiences.

“At Liverpool Cathedral we’re here waiting to welcome you back when the time is right and we can all be together in the Cathedral. In the meantime, please do join in the Big Picnic for Hope to spend time with your friends and family virtually and give thanks for our heroes past and present.”  

The Very Revd Adrian Dorber, Dean of Lichfield, said: “During the current pandemic we have all been inspired by a different national mood: there has been a great outpouring of neighbourliness, practical support and care for one another. We have been inspired by the selflessness and dedication of the NHS staff and so many other key workers. VE Day in 1945 celebrated not only the defeat of an enemy but the solidarity and resourcefulness of the whole nation; its hopes for a secure and more settled world.

“Although big public plans for celebrating the 75th anniversary of VE day 2020 have had to be put on hold, it seems really appropriate to use the date to remember the experience of World War II and to think about the humanity and care we have seen right now.”


How you can get involved in the Big Picnic for Hope

Share your plans and ideas for the Big Picnic for Hope using the hashtag #bigpicnicforhope. On social media, you’ll be able to share and see creative ideas of what to bake, what to make, how to picnic in style.

Donate to Micah Liverpool via Just Giving.

This will help everyone get ready to join together on Friday 8 May to share photos of their picnics and discuss memories and stories of their loved ones, past and present, in a way fitting of the circumstances we are living through.

To join in with the Big Picnic for Hope, find out more, or share your ideas and photos visit www.bigpicnicforhope.com also see participating cathedral social media and follow @bigpicnicforhope 

Participating Cathedrals: Bradford Cathedral, Chelmsford Cathedral, Chester Cathedral, Chichester Cathedral, Exeter Cathedral, Guildford Cathedral, Lichfield Cathedral, Liverpool Cathedral, Manchester Cathedral, Rochester Cathedral, Peterborough Cathedral, Portsmouth Cathedral, Southwell Minster