Covid death statistics have been projected onto Barnard Castle before Dominic Cummings' makes his appearance at the Covid-19 inquiry.

Grieving families gathered to hold a vigil for lost loved ones while the bleak figures were illuminated on the castle walls.

Campaign groups 38 Degrees and Covid Bereaved Families for Justice lit up the walls with the message "231,332 Covid deaths - is that clear enough to read?".

They hope to send a message that the British public has not forgotten the scale of the tragedy caused by the pandemic.

The Northern Echo: Covid Vigil at Barnard Castle

Veronica Hawking, Head of Campaigns, at 38 Degrees, said: “Our message could not be more simple: 231,332 people died during the pandemic, while people at the very top of Government flouted rules meant to keep all of us safe.

"That’s 231,332 parents, siblings, friends - people whose loved ones couldn’t say proper goodbyes as they made huge sacrifices to protect others, a number that’s still rising as we come to understand the true scale of the pandemic.

The Northern Echo: Covid Vigil at Barnard Castle

"Dominic Cummings’ day trip to Barnard Castle has become symbolic of the contempt these pandemic victims were treated with by people at the very top of Government.

"Neither bereaved families, nor the British public, can move on, until we’re confident lessons have been learned and justice served.

"That’s why 38 Degrees and Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice will continue to highlight the voices of bereaved until they have truly been heard, pushing the inquiry to ensure the mistakes made are never repeated."

The Northern Echo: Covid Vigil at Barnard Castle

Barbara Herbert, spokesperson for Covid-19 Bereaved Families for Justice UK said: "The inquiry has shown us how chaos, political infighting and deceit in the heart of government let the nation down when our lives depended on those in power.

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"Cummings, Johnson and Rishi Sunak have time and time again put their political careers before the public’s health.

"While they try and settle scores, we mourn over 231,332 loved ones lost to the virus.

"That must be the absolute focus of the questions that are put to Dominic Cummings tomorrow."