DAME VERA LYNN, who died yesterday at the grand old age of 103, represented so many things.

From her charity work for the Forces and young children with cerebral palsy, to her tireless efforts to entertain Second World War troops, often at great personal risk, to her unique singing voice, she was a true one-off.

That the words of perhaps her best known song were quoted by the Queen in the monarch’s lockdown broadcast earlier this year illustrated perfectly how Dame Vera’s message of hope travels across the decades.

She was a beacon of light at the nation’s darkest hour, and stood alongside the wartime generation who sacrificed so much, with that same quiet determination and conviction of principle.

Out of all the tributes paid yesterday, the words of music industry boss Dickon Stainer perhaps sum her up best. He said: “There are probably very, very few people in our country or in any country that you could say define the soul of a nation, which she did and I think that is her legacy.”

We completely agree. Rest in peace, Dame Vera.