Hospital trust honours ex-nurse for 65 years of service

Nellie-Noyce

Her first day as a nurse at Southampton’s university hospitals was back in 1943 – and, at the age of 85, she is still here helping staff in children’s outpatients.

Nellie Noyce, who has spent time working as a paediatric nurse and a midwife, will be among more than 65 volunteers being honoured by Southampton University Hospitals NHS Trust at a long-service ceremony today (Monday).

She will be presented with a lifetime achievement to mark her dedication to helping others during a career which has seen her spend only two years away from the Trust – transferring to Salisbury District Hospital at 22 to take up a general nursing role.

After returning, Nellie enjoyed a spell in the midwifery team before moving across to become a sister on the children’s wards, where she stayed until retirement age and has continued as a valued volunteer one day a week.

“My deep friendships with all the staff and my close voluntary colleague Brian Luter make my time here so special,” she said.

“I have seen the Trust evolve from being what I would call a cottage hospital to what it is today and I take great pride and satisfaction in being part of that journey.”

Kim Sutton, voluntary services manager, said Nellie performed a number of tasks, from sharpening colouring pencils for young patients, to folding and sealing hundreds of letters, chatting to families and answering the phone.

She added: “Nellie is still very much an active member of a team of staff who are very appreciative of her and we all want to say a big thank you for the commitment she has shown.”

Members of many voluntary organisations within SUHT, such as the Friends of Southampton General Hospital and the eye unit, Southampton Hospital Radio, Radio Lollipop, the British Red Cross and Talking Echo will be in attendance at the ceremony.

Councillor Carol Cunio, Mayor of Southampton, and John Trewby, Trust chairman, will present awards at the event, which takes place at 2pm in the chapel on D level, Southampton General Hospital.

Posted on Monday 6 December 2010