- Title: Barcelona's iconic Sagrada Familia opens doors to health workers after lockdown
- Date: 4th July 2020
- Summary: BARCELONA, SPAIN (JULY 4, 2020) (REUTERS) ***WARNING: CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** SAGRADA FAMILIA BASILICA CARDINAL AND ARCHBISHOP JOAN JOSEP OMELLA (CENTRE, BLACK SUIT) ENTERING SAGRADA FAMILIA ACCOMPANIED BY REPRESENTATIVES OF HEALTHCARE WORKERS INTERIOR OF SAGRADA FAMILIA FAMILY PHOTO WITH CARDINAL OMELLA AND REPRESENTATIVES OF HEALTHCARE WORKERS HEALTHCARE WORKERS ENTERING SAGRADA FAMILIA AND LOOKING AROUND HEALTHCARE WORKERS ADMIRING BUILDING VARIOUS OF HEALTHCARE WORKERS TAKING PICTURES (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) TERRASSA CITY HOSPITAL DOCTOR, VIRGINIA MARTINEZ, SAYING: "It is the first time that I have come here and for me it represents a gift for the effort and hours of work that we have spent in recent months, so I am quite grateful, I think it is a recognition of our work and what better than visiting a monument like this." (SOUNDBITE) (Catalan) MEDICAL EMERGENCIES DOCTOR, MANEL RUIDOR, SAYING: "I greatly appreciate being invited to visit the church, the Sagrada Familia is an absolutely spectacular temple, it is a space of peace and tranquility that in the times we have lived helps us a lot to be here, to praise all the colleagues who have been in the front line, it is a very good thing." BASILICA INTERIOR HEALTHCARE WORKERS SEATED ON BENCHES COUPLE LISTENING TO AUDIOGUIDE ON CELLPHONE VISITOR TAKING PICTURES (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) TERRASSA CITY HOSPITAL DOCTOR, VIRGINIA MARTINEZ, SAYING: "I think that we have to raise awareness in society and perhaps we have not done it well enough and we have to try harder to do this. It seems good to me that they had a confinement, I believe that the only way to stop these outbreaks is with confinement, there is no other way." (SOUNDBITE) (Catalan) MEDICAL EMERGENCIES DOCTOR, MANEL RUIDOR, SAYING: "These outbreaks were foreseeable but they are also worrying, when you walk down the street it seems that the virus no longer exists, that it is no longer among us, people have neglected themselves a little, perhaps we have all done it, and we should take it seriously because this was very serious and may come back, because the virus is still here." TWO WOMEN ADMIRING SAGRADA FAMILIA AND LISTENING TO AUDIOGUIDE ON CELLPHONE WOMAN WEARING PLASTIC FACE MASK CHECKING HER CELLPHONE GROUP OF YOUNG PEOPLE LISTENING TO AUDIOGUIDE ON CELLPHONE HEALTHCARE WORKERS DURING VISIT GROUP OF PEOPLE LISTENING TO AUDIOGUIDE ON CELLPHONE PEOPLE SEATED ON BENCHES MAN TAKING PICTURES WITH HIS CELLPHONE HEALTHCARE WORKERS DURING VISIT WOMAN TAKING PICTURES WITH HER CELLPHONE INTERIOR OF SAGRADA FAMILIA HEALTHCARE WORKERS ENTERING SAGRADA FAMILIA VARIOUS OF HEALTHCARE WORKERS OUTSIDE SAGRADA FAMILIA SAGRADA FAMILIA SPIRES AND CONSTRUCTION CRANES
- Embargoed: 18th July 2020 12:11
- Keywords: Barcelona COVID-19 Sagrada Familia Spain coronavirus landmark tourism
- Location: BARCELONA, SPAIN
- City: BARCELONA, SPAIN
- Country: Spain
- Topics: Arts / Culture / Entertainment
- Reuters ID: LVA001CLE8J0N
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Barcelona's Sagrada Familia basilica reopened on Saturday (July 4), giving frontline workers the chance to have the usually tourist-packed landmark to themselves in recognition of their efforts during the coronavirus pandemic.
People took photos and listened to audio guides after Archbishop of Barcelona Joan Josep Omella led representatives of healthcare workers into the church.
The world famous building - which was designed by architect Antoni Gaudi and started in 1882 but is still unfinished - closed almost four months ago. But for the next two weekends it will be open to essential workers, including those in healthcare, the police and NGOs, who will be able to explore without the usual crowds.
The goal is to recognise and pay tribute to Barcelona residents, "especially those who have been on the front lines fighting and working to prevent Covid-19", according to a statement on the basilica's website.
A second phase of reopening will see the lofty and famously unfinished church welcome Barcelona's residents for free, while a third will allow domestic and international tourists to visit.
The basilica was ranked the sixth most visited tourist attraction in the world based on bookings, according to TripAdvisor's 2019 list, and the most visited in Spain.
Spain has registered 205,545 coronavirus cases and 28,385 deaths, according to health ministry data, making it one of the worst affected countries in Europe.
(Production: Luis Felipe Castilleja, Jordi Rubio, Hanna Rantala, Gabriela Boccaccio, Ben Dadswell)
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