How to take part in the Christmas Eve doorstep bell ring to battle loneliness

At 6pm on Christmas Eve you may hear bells ringing out from doorsteps around your town.

Thousands of Brits have promised to stand outside and ring a bell for two minutes to help battle loneliness, including Prime Minister Boris Johnson and fiancee Carrie Symonds.

The campaign has been organised by Mary Beggs-Reid from Harrogate in North Yorkshire and aims to bring communities together after a trying 2020.

It’s very similar to the Clap for Carers tribute which ran for 10 weeks during the first national lockdown.

All you need to do is take to your doorstep with a bell of some description and ring it for two minutes.

If you don’t have a bell, there are numerous apps that can make the desired sound. You can even ring your own doorbell or bang a saucepan.

The event was first organised by Mary Beggs-Reid as a way for her neighbours to “end 2020 with a bit of magic, hope and togetherness”.

Now, the idea has grown with more than 450,000 people liking a Facebook page created for the event.

The aim is to make those suffering from loneliness this Christmas to feel the festive spirit, and not so alone.

“This will be our happy moment. Covid can not take this from us so ring louder,” said Ms Beggs-Reid.

“This year the Christmas spirit is so needed and for two minutes we can make sure nobody feels alone.”

Ms Beggs-Reid has also spoken to Mr Johnson on the phone about the event.

She added: “He said him, Carrie and Wilfred will be out ringing bells to help Santa on his way.

“They love the idea and will look for bells to join us. They said they support anything helping Santa fly his sleigh for the children.”

Captain Sir Tom Moore has also thrown his backing behind the event, describing it as “a brilliant initiative at a time where it is really needed”.