Johnson leads Britain in clap for fundraiser Captain Tom

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LONDON (Reuters) - Prime Minister Boris Johnson joined people across the United Kingdom on Wednesday in clapping outside their front doors in a tribute to fundraiser Captain Tom Moore who died in hospital aged 100 after testing positive for COVID-19.

The family of Moore, who raised more than 30 million pounds ($41 million) for the National Health Service, were among those who joined the nationwide applause at 1800 GMT, saying they were incredibly touched by the idea to mark his passing.

"They will be taking part with huge love in their hearts for their father, grandfather and father-in-law," they said in a statement.

Earlier, the British parliament held a minute of silence in honour of Moore, who died on Tuesday in Bedford Hospital after suffering pneumonia and COVID-19, whilst condolences have poured in from around the world.

"We now all have the opportunity to show our appreciation of him and all that he stood for and believed in," said Johnson, who was joined by his fiancee Carrie to clap outside his Downing Street office.

"That's why I encourage everyone to join in a national clap for Captain Tom and all those health workers for whom he raised money at 6 p.m. this evening."

Moore became a national hero after his sponsored walk where he did 100 lengths of his garden with the aid of a walking frame and his cheerful outlook was credited with raising the public's spirits during last year's COVID lockdown.

(Reporting by Elizabeth Piper and Michael Holden; editing by James Davey and Andrew MacAskill)