Historic nursing statues stand proud again

Release Date: 12/12/2019

Historic nursing statues stand proud again

Two nursing statues have been reinstated at The Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital following a successful suggestion through the staff Ideas Scheme and funding from the RJAH Charity.

The sculptures – which used to hang from the walls of the old nursing home that once stood on the site of the Oswestry-based hospital – replicate what is said to be 1950s RJAH nurses, Sister Saxon and Elspeth Scott Jones.

Mark Austin, Mechanical Estates Supervisor, submitted a bid through the Ideas Scheme – an initiative that allows staff to make suggestion to improve working life, a change to a process or to boost staff wellbeing – to have the statues reinstated.

He said: “The old nursing home was demolished back in 2011 and since then, the nursing statues have been sat in storage.

“I decided to put an idea in through the Ideas Scheme as I thought it was a real shame to see some hospital history go to waste and be hidden away.”

The statues were first created in 1955 and after restoration from M.E. & A Hughes in Welshpool to remove any wear and tear; they’re now standing proud outside the Main Entrance at RJAH.

Simon Everett, Estates Manager for Compliance and Sustainability, said: “I’d like to thank both the RJAH Charity and M.E. & A Hughes for their support with this project.

“The statues have a fond place in the heart of many current and former staff members, especially nurses.

“We’ve already received many comments from staff, patients and visitors about how much they’re enjoying seeing them.”

The taller of the two statues is a model of Sister Saxon who was appointed as a Junior Theatre Sister in August 1949, whilst the smaller statue is Elspeth Scott Jones, a student nurse.

The RJAH Charity invested £4,500 into the renovation and repair of the statues.

Helen Knight, Fundraising Manager, said: “The RJAH Charity was delighted to support the restoration and re-installation of these nursing statues.

“They are a vital part of RJAH history and I’m thrilled at how spectacular they look outside the Main Entrance.”

Photo caption [from left to right]: Mark Austin, Mechanical Estates Supervisor; Simon Everett, Estates Manager; Helen Knight, Fundraising Manager; and Natalie Ringsell from M.E. & A Hughes; with the nursing statues - Sister Saxon and Elspeth Scott Jones. 

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