Staff celebrate 25 years of dedicated service to the NHS

A special awards event was held at University Hospital on Friday, November 10, to celebrate over 2,000 years of service from 83 committed NHS staff.

University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) NHS Trust manages the Hospital of St Cross in Rugby, and University Hospital in Coventry, as well as a number of other NHS services in locations around the West Midlands.

The Trust’s annual Long Service Awards recognise staff who have reached 25 years of service in the NHS.

Attendees at this year’s ceremony included 47 dedicated nurses, doctors, healthcare assistants, portering, cleaning and catering staff, healthcare scientists and administrative staff who help the Trust provide world class care for patients.

Back in 1991-92, when these staff started working in the NHS, people were quoting lines from one of the big cinema hits, “Wayne’s World”, while “Stay” by Shakespear’s Sister was hitting number 1.

The Trust’s Chief Executive Officer, Professor Andy Hardy, and Chairman, Andy Meehan, presented framed certificates and shopping vouchers to members of staff at the event.

Amongst the St Cross colleagues to be recognised were Administration Manager, Deborah Carter, who has worked for the Hospital of St Cross for all 25 years of her NHS career, and two colleagues from Day Surgery; Staff Nurse Helen Henderson, and Ward Manager Paula Skelton, who has been at St Cross for seven years.

Paula Skelton said: “The Long Service Awards event was such a special occasion for us all to get together. I love working at the Hospital of St Cross, and I can’t believe I’ve got over 25 years NHS service!”

Amongst those to be recognised at University Hospital was Claire Stokes, Modern Matron for Gerontology, who co-leads the team caring for older patients at University Hospital in Coventry.

Claire has worked at University Hospital, and previously at Walsgrave Hospital, for all 26 years of her NHS service. She started aged 17 as an auxiliary nurse (equivalent to today’s Healthcare Assistants) and the Trust supported her to complete her nurse training between 1999 and 2002.

Claire said: “The event was so special as we had the chance to share our memories of working for the NHS.

“I’m proud to be a ‘home grown’ UHCW nurse. It’s wonderful to care for patients from across Coventry and Warwickshire, and I can’t believe it’s been over 25 years already!”

Chief Executive Officer, Professor Andy Hardy, said: “Each year, we celebrate the dedication of the UHCW staff who have spent a quarter of a century in the NHS.

“It’s been wonderful to recognise the contribution that everyone marking 25 years’ service has made to patients from Coventry, Rugby and Warwickshire and beyond.”