New doorway opens up outdoor courtyard

"We now have a place to relax and take a few quiet moments."

The Eye Department at Ipswich Hospital now have a secluded internal courtyard to take a well-earned break. The once enclosed and inaccessible space can be enjoyed for short, peaceful rest as one of the windows looking out on it has been made into a door.

Junior Sister for Ophthalmology, Sandra Ryan said:

“It’s wonderful to have somewhere close to the department to get some fresh air. Sometimes we only have a few minutes so to be able to grab a cuppa and sit outside for a few minutes makes all the difference. Also, some of the clinic rooms don’t have windows making quick, easy access to some outside space even more important. Everyone in the department is thrilled with the new door, what a difference something so seemingly ordinary has made!”

The project has been a real team effort. The doorway, funded by your donations to the COVID-19 Staff Wellbeing Appeal, was installed by our ever resourceful Estates team (they did a lot of weeding in the courtyard too!), the Eye Department staff have added bright and cheery flower pots and the weatherproof chairs were donated by a kind supporter.

The contemplative space has a personal meaning for the team too. The delightful engraved wooden bench, coffee tables and hanging baskets were gifted to them by the parents of Sara Finlay who was a Junior Sister for Ophthalmology at the hospital for many years.

Sadly in 2019 Sara passed away following an aggressive brain tumour. Sara was a passionate gardener and the wizard statue that once stood proudly in her garden has found a new home in the staff courtyard with thanks to her family.

Sandra added:

“How fitting for the staff to have place they can go to relax and take a few quiet moments out of their day under the watchful gaze of a wise wizard!”

Pictured from left to right: Sharon Bones, Beata Predmojski, Hayley Vass, Sarah Trenter, Sandra Ryan and Rachel Harrison who all work in the Eye Department.