"Over the last seven years, I have spent an unhealthy amount of time under the care of the NHS and every time I’ve had nothing but outstanding care. It has been my misfortune to spend time on the wards of Leeds St James and Sheffield’s Hallamshire and Northern General hospitals. The saving grace every time has been the care I’ve received, from numerous people including my GP and all the professionals that carry out various tests, scans and probes, world-leading surgeons and anaesthetists, dedicated hard-working nurses and all the support staff. They all helped to save my life on three separate occasions.
On my last stay in the Northern General in 2021, following a heart valve replacement, I shuffled off to the loo in the early hours of the morning. As I turned the dimly lit corner I glanced up to see a group of nurses in the process of doing a handover, the time when the night shift passes on info to the oncoming morning staff. They were all huddled around a table lit by a single lamp, deep in conversation, taking in all the relevant details of the new arrivals and those who needed extra attention. The image reminded me of a Rembrandt or Caravaggio painting. I returned to my bed, picked up my pad and did a quick sketch of the scene and promised myself that I would recreate it when I got the chance.
Twelve months have passed and I have finally found the time to revisit those brilliant nurses and show my appreciation for their dedication and care.
The NHS is an incredible institution that needs our love and attention otherwise we will lose it and every one of us will suffer as a result.
Thank you, NHS and all of you who work for her. I owe you my life and I will never stop loving you and it is more than likely that I’ll never stop using you too."
- Created in 2022.
- Emulsion on board.
- Signed by the artist in the bottom right corner on the front of the painting and on the reverse.
- Measurements including frame: 64.6cm x 90cm.