The chairman of Hounslow and Richmond Community Healthcare has announced he will leave the NHS Trust in March 2019.

Stephen Swords was originally appointed as chairman of the local NHS trust’s board in January 2010.

Stephen said: “I have decided not to seek re-appointment at the end of my current term on 31 March 2019. I remain convinced of the bright, if challenging, future that lies ahead for HRCH and community trusts in general as the out-of-hospital strategy gathers momentum. I have enjoyed my time here enormously, but I feel it is time for me to move on.”

During Stephen’s time as chairman, the trust has won several awards, including an international Journal of Community Nursing award for its innovative use of a wound care app.

Last month it won a national Health Service Journal award for improving its health visitor service for mums and babies.

In October, it won a national Nursing Times award for best place to work for employee satisfaction.

Stephen was previously a non-executive director with NHS Richmond and served on other local health organisation boards.

He was also a councillor with the London Borough of Richmond-upon-Thames and Luton Borough Council.

The selection of Stephen’s successor will be organised by NHS Improvement.

Steve Russell, executive regional manging director for NHS Improvement London region, said: “I want to personally thank Steve for the enormous contribution he has made for the patients and local community of Hounslow and Richmond during the last nine years. Under his leadership Hounslow and Richmond Community NHS Trust has improved the quality of care while maintaining a strong financial discipline and was recently rated as ‘Good’ by the CQC.”