THE King had a special message for the Windrush generation and their descendants who have given so much to the NHS: “Their contribution has been immeasurable.”
His Majesty King Charles sent a congratulatory letter to the winners of this year’s Christina Newbury Award, which was read out by Sir Trevor McDonald this evening.
In it, the monarch praised the “selfless duty” of the workers who came aboard HMT Windrush to work in healthcare 75 years ago.
He wrote: “It was those first volunteers who left their homes and families to travel the world that made the creation of the NHS possible.”
“It is the commitment of everyone who has followed in their footsteps that has helped sustain the company for 75 years.
“And today it is the boundless compassion, professionalism and good humor that the Windrush generation so embodies – now joined by NHS colleagues from over 200 nations – that continues to support patients and their families in their time of greatest need and support fear.”
Vice-chair of the Windrush Commemoration Committee in the UK, Paulette Simpson CBE, who accepted the award, said she was “honoured and delighted” to receive the gong, which is named after The Sun’s late health editor Chrisina Newbury, who played a key role in establishing Who Cares Wins.
She was joined on stage by three generations of the Bateman family, all of whom have dedicated their careers to the NHS.
Grandmother Victoria, 79, came from Jamaica in 1963 to train as a nurse and her daughter Michelle, 58, and grandson Liam, 28, followed her into the health service.
Victoria said: “I was a long way from home but soon became the most wonderful NHS family.
“Nursing is about caring, and everyone around me took care of me just as I took care of them.”