Ambulance staff awarded for bravery and commitment

South East Coast Ambulance Service award winners
South East Coast Ambulance Service award winners

Life-saving ambulance staff and volunteers were celebrated at an awards evening.

South East Coast Ambulance Service (SECAmb) held its second ceremony for the west of its region, where chief executive commendations and long service awards were dished out across a range of categories, including clinical excellence, patient care and leadership.

The evening saw an emotional reunion for the Team of the Year – a group of staff from across the region – which celebrated alongside the 15-year-old boy whose life they saved after he suffered a cardiac arrest.

Charlie Thurston, from Forest Row, East Sussex, attended the ceremony with his parents having made an amazing recovery following his collapse.

Employee of the Year went to West Sussex operations manager Andy Pattison, for his hard work developing a trauma management scheme which provides peer-to-peer support to staff potentially at risk of post-traumatic stress.

The ceremony was held on Thursday, March 8, at Woodlands Park Hotel near Cobham, Surrey.

Vice Lord Lieutenant of Surrey, Bill Biddell, attended as the Queen’s representative to present the Queen’s Long Service and Good Conduct medals, while staff were also recognised for 20 and 30 years’ NHS service.

Between them, staff celebrated for more than 800 years’ service.

Volunteers receiving awards included Fleet and Church Crookham community first responder Alan Smart, who has responded to more than 2,000 emergencies since 2013.

SECAmb chief executive Daren Mochrie said: “I was very proud to join our staff and volunteers to celebrate their success.

“These awards showcase the long service, clinical skill, bravery and commitment which takes place across our region every day.

“It is vital we celebrate and reward achievement and the award winners represent just a small percentage of the amazing work I know goes on day-in, day-out within SECAmb.

“Well done and thank you to all our staff and volunteers for everything they do for our patients and each other.”

Full list of award winners:

Chief Executive Commendations

Above and beyond the call of duty – Jacek Sokulski, Operational Team Leader, Ashford, Kent; Lauren Morris, Emergency Care Support Worker, Ashford, Kent; Pete Owen, Critical Care Paramedic, Ashford, Kent; Gareth Harris and Alex Bourne, Ambulance Technicians, UK Specialist Ambulance Service – For their quick-thinking and actions which thwarted an attempted robbery at the Trust’s Ashford Make Ready Centre and led to the conviction of a group who had been stealing medical equipment across Kent.

Above and beyond the call of duty – Alan Deakin, Student Paramedic, Brighton – For his work in ensuring better support and treatment for homeless people in Brighton. Alan has been working tirelessly, joining up with other agencies and crews to improve the service we provide to his vulnerable group of people.

Outstanding Patient Care – Kirk Collison, Emergency Medical Advisor, Crawley EOC – For his calmness and professionalism despite his own recent personal tragedy in providing excellent care and advice to a woman whose baby had been born at home prematurely and not breathing.

Leadership – Tom Pullen, Specialist Paramedic and IBIS Manager, Crawley – For his role in championing the Trust’s IBIS system both internally and externally and driving forward innovation in developing patient care.

Leadership – Tim Magson, Paramedic and HART Training Manager, Crawley – For his commitment to his role including the development of a Hazardous Area Response Team (HART) training course which is now seen as a benchmark for other ambulance services to follow.

Leadership – Angela Rayner – Head of Inclusion and Wellbeing, Crawley – For her efforts working tirelessly to improve the wellbeing provision for staff across SECAmb by developing a wellbeing strategy and the establishment of the Trust’s Wellbeing Hub.

Voluntary and Community Service – Alan Smart, Community First Responder, Fleet and Church Crookham – For his dedication to his role as a CFR. Since becoming a CFR in 2013, Alan has responded to some 2,000 emergencies and has been involved in a number of successful resuscitations. During a hot spell last summer, Alan went the extra mile keeping a stock of cold drinks in his car to hand out to ambulance crews.

Employee of the Year – Andrew Pattison, Operations Manager, West Sussex.

Team of the Year – Helen Flynn, Horley; Claire Brewer, Horley; Cheryl Laflain, Horley; Nicole LeCroisette, Dorking; Jonathan Fisher, Dartford; Charlotte Davis, Coxheath EOC; Sam Taylor, Charlie Leahy, KMSS Air Ambulance; Jess Garland, KMSS Air Ambulance; Tony Hudson, Consultant, St George’s Hospital – For their team work and expert treatment to save the life of a 15-year-old boy who suffered a cardiac arrest at home.

Queen’s Ambulance Service medals for Long Service & Good conduct (20 years)

David Lovett, Gatwick MRC; Eileen Smith, Godalming; Hazel Farlow, Godalming; Jonathan Keenes, Farnborough; Kevin Wheat, Gatwick MRC; Lesley Stewart, Redhill; Paula McKeough-Lea, Gatwick MRC; Katie McNeil, Haywards Heath; Stephen Offer, Tangmere; Zena Heywood, Chertsey.

20 years NHS Long Service medals

Jennifer Bleach, Gatwick MRC; Kate Buche, Polegate; Michelle Moore, Tangmere; Michelle Thompson, Crawley EOC; Richard Orme, Chertsey; Susie Thum, Gatwick MRC; Vera Stocker, Gatwick MRC.

30 years NHS Long Service Award

Debbie Maynard, Crawley ECO; Desmond Eveleigh, Gatwick MRC; Jane Lupton, Polegate; John Reed, Redhill; Katrina Vickery, Farnborough; Mark Lilley, Worthing; Peter Hogg, Crawley EOC; Peter Vallance, Epsom; Phil Marsh, Gatwick MRC; Russell Kempton, Worthing; Sue Lawson, Retired, Brighton; Tim Gorringe, Lewes/Crawley HQ.

Volunteer’s 10 years Long Service Award

Mark Townsend, CFR, Aylesham, Kent; Paul Berry, CFR, Billingshurst; Paula Davis, CFR, Horsham; Heather Kingdon, CFR, Partridge Green; Tessa Weaver, CFR, Godalming; Craig Chitty, CFR, Effingham.