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Published: 28 October 2021

More than 7,000 years’ service celebrated at NHS award ceremony 

NHS colleagues from Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust (KCHFT) celebrated more than 7,000 years combined service at a staff awards ceremony on Friday, 23 October.

A total of 633 colleagues from KCHFT are celebrating milestones of five, 10, 15, 20 or 25 years’ service in NHS roles. More than 100 people were treated to a celebration elevenses at the Kent Event Centre, Detling where they were presented with commemorative badges and certificates by Chief Executive Paul Bentley.

Tissue viability specialist nurse Cilla Page (below, right) picked up her award for 25 years of service, but has actually been an NHS nurse in some capacity for nearly 42 years, having joined from the army in 1980. She said she’s just as passionate about her job as the day she started.

Cilla said: “In my time in the NHS, I’ve worked in elderly care and in the community. My passion is for wound care, so I’m now a tissue viability nurse, which is my dream job. I feel fortunate to work for KCHFT, I like everything they stand for, it’s what I stand for and that’s why I’m still here. Everything from how they care for their staff, how forward-thinking and digitally-advanced we are, I just think it’s a great all-round organisation to work for.

“I wanted to be a nurse because I love making a difference, making people feel well. There have been many changes in nursing in my career, loads of positive things but fundamentally nursing never changes. You’re trying to keep patients well to keep them safe and that is what makes me get up every day. I love doing what I’m doing.”

Clinical co-ordinator Tina Burton (below, right) has been with KCHFT since she started her NHS career 27 years ago as a healthcare assistant. She says she wouldn’t want to work anywhere else.

She said:  “The best bit about my job is the team I work with. We pull together, we can see the end goal and we go for it. We enjoy each day.”

Paul Bentley said: “This was in many ways a humbling celebration and we have been overwhelmed by the messages from staff about how supportive the trust is to work for and that they feel we always strive to put our patients first. We’re very proud of the community we have built here and we will continue to focus on our patients as we grow.”

For more information about the great opportunities we provide to deliver the best patient care, please visit our careers page at