As a thank you for their hard work throughout the pandemic, some of our lucky members of staff were invited to West Ham United’s training ground for a special visit.
Our staff, along with colleagues from Barts Health NHS Trust, had the opportunity to watch training, talk to their favourite players, including England star Declan Rice and club captain Mark Noble, as well as the first team manager David Moyes, before being treated to tickets for last Thursday’s Europa League match against Dinamo Zagreb at the London Stadium.
Luca Comisi, one of our Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) nurses, highlighted the boost to his wellbeing the visit gave him and his colleagues: “The last couple of years has been really difficult for everybody. Work has been very busy in challenging circumstances.
“To be able to come to the training ground and do something so different is very nice – we needed a break!”
The visit, which took place before the Premier League’s emergency Covid-19 measures were reintroduced, followed our staff taking part in a London United football tournament earlier this year, which saw NHS staff across the capital represent the football club nearest to their Trust.
Clinical Operational Repatriation Facilitator Lee Harris felt the special opportunity “made the job worthwhile” after a difficult period. He said: “It’s a nice reward for all the hard work. I’m a die-hard West Ham fan, so this is up there with one of the best things I’ve ever done!
“We didn’t expect any of this, it has been amazing to speak to some of the players, so thank you very much to the club.”
Chief Executive Matthew Trainer praised West Ham United and highlighted the relationship between the club and our Trust: “We’re very grateful for their support, not just with this latest act of kindness, but with the support they’ve shown over the past year.
“West Ham is a close partner to us, and a huge part of our community, it’s fantastic that we have such a close relationship which continues to grow.
“It’s been a difficult time for our staff, so it was much appreciated for a few of them to have this special occasion.”