More than 45 nurses who have collectively served St Helier and Epsom Hospitals for 1000 years were honoured at a ceremony this week.

Nurses who have worked for the Trust for between 20 and 43 years joined for a celebration of their careers, receiving a new nursing badge.

Alongside deputy chief nurse Sarah Hayes, assistant chief nurse Sarah Langfield and head of nursing Richard Hughes, staff enjoyed afternoon tea.

Chief Nurse, Arlene Wellman said: “Whether we are providing care in an emergency situation in A&E, helping to deliver a longed-for baby or are caring for elderly patients in their own home, there’s no doubt that nurses and midwives across the country are the backbone of the NHS.

"And that’s certainly the case at Epsom and St Helier – we have an army of hardworking and committed nursing staff, many of whom would describe their colleagues as being like family.

"In fact, there are so many people that have dedicated the whole of their working lives to Epsom and St Helier, that we thought it was time to give our nursing staff a small token of our appreciation.

“In previous years, metal badges of a similar design were supplied from schools of nursing and midwifery following qualification, and so we know just how meaningful they can be.

"The new badge was designed by one of our senior nurses and is based on the original badges of Carshalton School of Nursing and Epsom and Kingston College of Nursing and midwifery; showing the unity between the two.

“We are so pleased to bring the badge back to our profession.

"It is a symbol of our identity and history of nursing and midwifery on the local area.

"I am sure our nurses will wear it with pride.”

The Trust's next celebrations will include newly qualified nurses and there is a plan to ensure that all our nursing staff receive a badge in the coming weeks. We celebrate and thank all of our staff for their hard work and commitment.

We are holding a Band 5 Nurses’ Open Day on Saturday 21 September from 9am to 1pm in the Eye Unit, Ground Floor, B Block, St Helier Hospital.