Clinical leaders at the Orthopaedic have teamed up with Keele University to appoint a new consultant senior lecturer of population orthopaedics.

Mr Geraint Thomas will take up the role from July 1, helping to fill the void created by the death of Professor James Richardson last year.

He will start as a Senior Lecturer, with the intention of progressing through to a full Professorship over a three-year period.

Mr Thomas will team up with colleagues at the specialist hospital to form a young hip unit, working under the clinical leadership of Mr Chris Evans, an orthopaedic surgeon who has been working in the Oswestry area for almost 15 years.

He said that expanding the Gobowen hospital's research would improve patient care and I look forward to making this a reality.

“My research will be focused on population orthopaedics – osteoarthritis in particular, but I will work hard to support my colleagues in pursuing and developing their own areas of research," he said.

“Collaboration is the key to success and working with Keele opens up very exciting new opportunities.”

Mr Steve White, medical director, said: “This is an exciting joint appointment linking Keele, with its expertise in primary health care, and this Trust, with its expertise in specialist surgery, to look at the whole population in relation to musculoskeletal care.

“Population health is now beginning to get the priority it deserves and has recently been recognised in the new NHS Long-Term plan, which has just been published.

“Geraint has already made great strides in understanding the nature of osteoarthritis, particularly of the hip. We are delighted that he has agreed to join us and look forward to him arriving in the summer.

“Professor Richardson’s unexpected passing was a huge shock. He played such a big part in enhancing this organisation’s reputation as a centre of excellence and innovation. Now we hope Geraint can help us take that forward.”

Professor Christian Mallen, director of Keele University's Institute for Primary Care and Health Sciences, said: "We are delighted that Geraint is joining us at the Institute for Primary Care and Health Sciences.

“His expertise in orthopaedics and population medicine will be an excellent addition to our multi-disciplinary team, and we look forward to developing exciting new programmes of work with one of the leading clinical academics in this field.”