Bradford businesses combine to thank NHS staff with a Christmas surprise

Picture of vouchers wrapped up
Image credit: Suzanne Bennett

One NHS consultant geriatrician at Bradford Royal Infirmary (BRI) has found a touching way to express her gratitude for her staff’s dedication during the Covid-19 crisis. Alison McMurtry, along with other consultant colleagues, has bought £10 salon gift vouchers for the 350 nurses on her whole team. The vouchers will be handed over just before Christmas as a surprise.

The salon, Mirror Mirror in Bingley, has decided to match the donation – increasing the gift vouchers’ value to £20 each.

The idea to thank the nurses with the salon vouchers was sparked when Debbie, a client of Mirror Mirror, spoke to salon co-owner Suzanne Bennett. Debbie’s husband is a colleague of Alison McMurty at BRI. They had originally thought about booking manicure appointments for the team, but to be more inclusive to everyone’s tastes they settled on the idea of vouchers.

A print and media firm, DMP in Keighley, also got involved by printing the vouchers free of charge. The salon collected them on Friday 27 November and wrapped them in a golden envelope with ribbons. Plus, the salon’s buyers for their skincare products, ESPA, have contributed samples for each voucher.

The salon started 30 years ago in Suzanne Bennett’s spare bedroom, and has been co-owned for the last five years by her son Edward Bennett. Edward explained why the salon decided to match the donation:

“As soon as the idea was suggested we were on board! It’s been such a trying year for us all, even more so for those people risking their safety to care for others, so we’re just delighted to be involved in giving something back that will hopefully spread some much needed cheer to these valuable members of our community”.

Edward Bennett photo
Edward Bennett

Alison McMurty also explained how she wanted to give them this surprise for all their hard work during this tough year:

“They have worked tirelessly to care for patients of all ages, with and without coronavirus. We’re unable to have our usual Christmas get together this year, and we wanted to do something to thank all our staff and show them how much their dedication and compassion really is appreciated”.

It certainly has been a tough year for both the NHS and local businesses. Bradford Royal Infirmary itself is coping with an increasing number of confirmed covid admissions and is not a vaccination hub. Despite their challenges, the Bradford teaching hospitals have recognised the appreciation of their local community and staged a ‘Clap for Our Community’ tribute on Thursday 3 December to thank them for their cooperation in tackling Covid-19.

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