THE hard work and dedication of staff and volunteers at the Orthopaedic Hospital has been recognised at a special awards ceremony.

A total of 17 awards were presented at the hospital's fourth annual Celebration of Achievement Awards, which took place on Thursday at the Lion Quays Hotel in Weston Rhyn.

Much-loved BBC Radio Shropshire presenter, Eric Smith, compered the evening.

Mark Brandreth, chief executive, praised the staff at the hospital for making a difference.

He said: “It was fantastic to see more than 250 colleagues come together to celebrate our achievements of the past year.

“We have an incredible team here at the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Hospital (RJAH) working in clinical and non-clinical roles, who are making a massive difference to the lives of their patients and colleagues on a daily basis, so really last night was our chance to say thank you for everyone’s efforts.

“I’m only sorry we cannot fit everyone into the event, and we also must thank those members of staff who were still working hard to keep the hospital running while we enjoyed our night.

“I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank Eric for compering the evening. He is absolutely fantastic at what he does – and he was a big factor in ensuring the evening was such a brilliant occasion.”

Winners on the night included Jean Blakemore - healthcare assistant on Alice Ward – the hospital’s dedicated children’s unit, who was presented with the Patient Choice Individual Award.

Almost 1,000 votes were cast for the four finalists – who also included Jayne Brown, physiotherapist; Emma Evans, healthcare assistant on Gladstone Ward; and Mr Simon Hill, consultant orthopaedic surgeon.

And the Midland Centre for Spinal Injuries (MCSI) won the Patient Choice Team Award. Just over 1,000 votes were cast for the four teams in the running for the award, which also included Baschurch Day Unit, Clwyd Ward and Montgomery Unit.

Other award recipients included, Miss Gill Cribb, orthopaedic and oncological surgeon and clinical lead for the Tumour Unit, who was presented with the Chief Executive’s Award for Inspirational Leadership.

The Mary Powell Nurse of the Year Award – named in honour of a legendary former matron at the hospital – was presented to Anne Lloyd, Clwyd Ward manager.

And the Sir Robert Jones Doctor of the Year Award went to Mr Andrew Bing, consultant orthopaedic surgeon.

Gwyndaf Lloyd was recognised for his warm and friendly approach with patients and visitors, while working on the hospital’s Help Desk by winning the Volunteer of the Year Award, while Shropshire Community Health NHS Trust were presented with the Partnership Award, for their work alongside RJAH in further developing musculoskeletal services across the footprint of the Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin STP.

Some of the loudest cheers of the night were given to the Estates Team, who won the Outstanding Team Achievement of the Year, and Mark Devaney, staff nurse on Wrekin Ward, who won the Richard Clarke Unsung Hero of the Year Award.

Ahead of the ceremony, staff were treated to a surprise musical performance from Mark Brandreth, who sang Michael Bublé’s rendition of ‘You Make Me Feel So Young’.

A singer outside of work, Mark made the decision to perform just days before the event.

He added: “Every year we always have some form of entertainment at the awards, so this year I thought let’s do something a bit different.

"Before last night, a few people knew I was a singer but a lot probably didn’t, so I think it definitely came as a surprise to many!”