NCIR treats its 6,000th patient

Nearly three years after it opened, our innovative Norfolk Centre for Interventional Radiology (NCIR) has treated its 6,000th patient.

The £7million centre was opened in September 2020 having received a £220,000 grant from N&N Hospitals Charity enabling essential patient monitoring systems to be purchased.

The 6,000th patient, Michael Atkinson, 85, from Norwich, visits the centre every 10 weeks to have his nephrostomy (catheter from one of his kidneys) changed after having his bladder removed following cancer.

He said: “The old unit was rather cramped and didn’t have any windows. They have always been brilliant, but since moving to this new unit you can see just what a difference it has made to them. They all seem so much happier.”

The team has developed a specific patient pathway following Mr Atkinson’s feedback after having to go onto a ward via the Emergency Department after he accidentally caught the tube on a door handle. Currently, if nephrostomy patients inadvertently pull out their catheter they have to go into ED and then onto Same Day Emergency Care, where they wait to be seen.

NNUH NCIR Service Lead David Pechey said: “We have worked closely with our colleagues in the Urology team to develop a pathway so that patients like Mr Atkinson can call us directly and we can tell them when we can fit them in. It’s a relatively simple procedure which does not take long, so they can wait at home where they are more comfortable and only come to the hospital when they need to. It’s such a simple thing, but it makes the world of difference to our patients.”

Julie Cooper, Head of Grants for the Norfolk and Norwich Hospitals Charity, said: “We were really pleased to be able to offer a grant to support the development of the Interventional Radiology Centre, and learning that more than 6000 patients have now benefited over the last three years is wonderful news.  Thank you to everyone who donated and made it possible for us to support better care for local patients.”

To find out more about the N&N Hospitals Charity or to make a donation please visit 

You can follow the Charity on social media @nnhospcharity

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N&N Hospitals Charity Summer Raffle winners announced

The N&N Hospitals Charity Summer Raffle was drawn on Wednesday 5th July, thanks to support from Sam Higginson and the Stroke & Neurosciences Team on Heydon Ward.

The winner of the first prize of £1,000 was Rosie Wigg with ticket 17677, who has very generously asked us to keep the money as a donation to our Stroke & Neurosciences Appeal.  Rosie has made this gesture thanks to her strong Catholic faith and hopes that it helps support improvements for Stroke and Neurosciences patients.  We are very grateful for this generous donation.

The second prize of £500 was won by Mrs C Stocks (17263), who had popped into the Charity Hub to make a donation, and was persuaded to buy some raffle tickets.  She was very grateful to be a winner.

Four prizes of £50 were won by Mrs Stimpson (18316), B Taylor (16681), M Pearce (14170) and Jane B (13890).

£100 voucher from Mr Mengal’s restaurant was won by Lucy G (13564)

A hotel stay and breakfast for two was won by Spencer M (12826)

A bottle of ‘fancy’ prosecco was won by Sally N (15863)

A bottle of Home Farm Gin was won by Claire R (13599)

Four bottles of prosecco were won by Olly F (12888),  C Jameson (16154), P Harris (14853) and Carl R (16812).  Two bottles have been returned for a future draw.

Five Facebook Portal TV cameras were won by Daniel C (15203), Mr M.S. (14257), Lisa S (12586), Amanda (13249) and Kathryn (12646)

Congratulations to our winners, and thank you to everyone who took part for the benefit of our Stroke and Neurosciences Appeal.

We have tried to contact all winners, however if your name or ticket number appears in this list, and we have not been able to make contact, please do pop into the Charity Hub, send an email to or call 01603 287107.

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Charity abseil returns with a double dare

It’s back! The N&N Hospitals Charity Abseil is returning in what is fast becoming an annual tradition for thrill-seekers and daredevils, raising vital funds to support patients and staff at the N&N, Cromer and Jenny Lind Hospitals.

And for 2023, we have a double dare – take on the iconic 42-foot Forum building in Norwich as well as an abseil down the inside of the N&N Hospital on Colney Lane.

The first opportunity to test your courage takes place on Sunday, 17 September at The Forum when qualified events team leader Dave Talbot, from Adventure Events, will provide full training and support on the day.

Chief Nurse Prof Nancy Fontaine

You’ll experience fabulous views of the city while supporting the charity which raises millions of pounds each year to support the work of the N&N to benefit patients and staff.

Our abseil then moves to the N&N on Sunday, 10 December when you have the chance to have some festive fun – why not dress up in a Santa suit, pin on some angel wings or pull on a Christmas jumper to descend the 40ft from the fourth floor of the East Atrium.

Our 2022 charity abseil sold out within weeks so please sign up as soon as possible to guarantee your place on the wall.

In both events, you can take part as a team or as an individual in support of our hospitals during this special year as we celebrate the 75th anniversary of the NHS, with a discount for those who sign up for both abseils.

Last year’s event saw Chief Nurse Nancy Fontaine, Chairman Tom Spink and Head of Chaplaincy Adrian Woodbridge take part, along with teams from infection control, switchboard and members of the public.

No experience is necessary, and registration is £25 (NNUH staff will receive a £10 discount, please contact the charity team for code).

Each participant is asked to raise a minimum sponsorship of £50 for the N&N Hospitals Charity – you can raise money for any one of our main appeals, a department of your choice, or for our General Fund which supports projects across the Trust.

Participants of 15 years and over can take part, but if you are under 18, full parent consent will be required.

To sign up, Forum Abseil September 2023 | Norfolk and Norwich Hospitals Charity (

Registration for the Christmas abseil will open later in the summer when those taking part in both events will receive a £5 discount. For more information, contact


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New Cromer Hospital optical scanner funded by hospital charity ​

Cromer Hospital is making good use of a new Heidelberg optical coherence tomography scanner (OCT) which was funded by the Norfolk & Norwich Hospitals Charity.

The technology produces a 3D image and can also measure, for example, optic discs on patients with or without glaucoma enabling the clinicians to monitor and treat any progression of the disease. The machines are widely used for the monitoring of Wet macular degeneration which usually progresses quickly, and vision loss can occur rapidly if left untreated.

The equipment can diagnose lesions within the eye which can lead to an oncology referral – the equipment can be lifesaving if an eye tumour is diagnosed quickly.

Chris Grayston, Operations Manager for Cromer, said: “We are always looking for opportunities to improve our services and having access to the latest technology is a great benefit to our patients.”

The scans can be carried out without dilating the eye, meaning less discomfort for patients and less time for vision to return to normal, and can replace invasive procedures involving dye injections. As dilating drops are not required, there is also a reduction in the nurse time required and pharmacy costs, supporting service efficiency.

Prior to OCT technology a flat 2D image was taken of the retina/disc on a retinal camera with no measurements or other crucial information.

John Paul Garside, Director of the N&N Hospitals Charity, said: “It’s good to see patients in rural North Norfolk benefit from new technology thanks to the support our charity receives from the local community around Cromer Hospital.”

The Norfolk & Norwich Hospitals Charity supports better care for the hospitals forming part of the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, including the Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital, Cromer & District Hospital, and the Jenny Lind Children’s Hospital.  The charity funds additional state-of-the-art medical equipment, improvements to the hospital environment and support for patients, wellbeing and development for the Trust’s NHS staff, and ground-breaking research.  More information can be found at

Photograph: Ophthalmic Photographer Lisa Bellamy and NNUH CEO Sam Higginson with the new scanner at Cromer Hospital


CrombieNew Cromer Hospital optical scanner funded by hospital charity ​
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Brothers take on gruelling charity mountain challenge

Two brothers are preparing to climb the equivalent of Mount Everest by scaling Snowdon in Wales eight times in four days to support the N&N Hospitals Charity.

Ben, who works as a tree surgeon, and Sam, who is in the Royal Air Force, will take up their challenge at the end of September.

The pair will be fundraising for the Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, a cause close to their hearts.

Sam Brown, pictured, aims to climb Snowdon eight times with his brother Ben

Ben said: “My wife and I recently experienced the fabulous work of the EPAU after suffering a missed miscarriage which had a huge impact on our family so we decided to donate any money we raise to the hospital charity.

“We will be climbing up and back down Snowdon 8.2 times in four days, which will be the equivalent elevation of Mount Everest, and around 64 miles.”

The brothers have already started training which involves lots of walking, and although Norfolk is not the best place for mountain training, Ben and Sam are hoping to be in peak condition when they head to Wales for the challenge.

Ben said: “We both have military experience and have done our fair share of walking in boots with weight on our back in the Welsh hills, so we have a good base standard to start training from.

“We will try and get to as many hilly areas as possible in the build up to the challenge to get our ‘hill legs’.”

You can support Ben and Sam on their Everest Challenge here.

The EPAU is a specialist unit which manages early pregnancy problems such bleeding and pain, and cares for women who have had problems in previous pregnancies, including a previous ectopic pregnancy, molar pregnancy or recurrent miscarriage.

For more information about the N&N Hospitals Charity, including how you fundraise, please contact



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Teenager joins famous faces in new Rankin exhibition

A former patient of the Jenny Lind Children’s Hospital is featuring alongside comedian Michael Palin and England footballer Jordan Henderson in a new exhibition from Rankin and NHS Charities Together, celebrating 75 years of NHS charities.

16-year-old Evie Youngs from Norfolk was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in 2022, and since then has fundraised almost £8,000 for the N&N Hospitals Charity and the Jenny Lind Children’s Hospital which cared for her, and next year celebrates its 170th birthday.

Thanks to her incredible fundraising efforts, Evie is one of 14 people starring in ‘Love and Charity: A History of Giving in the NHS’ – a new exhibition which celebrates the vital role charities have played throughout the health service’s history, ahead of the NHS’ 75th anniversary on 5th July. All portraits – including Evie’s – will be displayed at the Saatchi gallery in London from 31st May- 11th June.

Led by NHS Charities Together, the national charity caring for the NHS, and internationally renowned photographer Rankin, the exhibition features new portraits of NHS staff, patients and volunteers who all have a powerful personal connection to NHS charities. Evie was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma aged 15 and, having received incredible care from the NHS, wanted to do something to thank staff who had helped her throughout her diagnosis and treatment journey.

Evie – who has now made a full recovery – said: “When I rang the end of treatment bell it was really emotional – all the nurses who had cared for me were there, and it felt so good to see them after everything they’d done for me. I decided to fundraise because I just wanted to thank the staff for all the help they had given me. They make you so comfortable at such a terrible time and were honestly like family. The hospital became like my second home.

“Fundraising lifted my spirits and gave me something to concentrate on beside my cancer, but I never thought we would raise as much as we have. I feel really proud that I’ve been able to help other children and give something back.”

Remarkably, the Jenny Lind Children’s Hospital only exists thanks to another great fundraiser – 19th century opera singer and philanthropist Jenny Lind, who was recently made famous through Rebecca Ferguson’s portrayal in The Greatest Showman. The Beyonce of her day, Lind visited Norwich to perform regularly from 1847, and each time her arrival saw crowds lining the streets, church bells ringing and even gun salutes.

Based at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, the hospital has continued to have a long-term impact to this present day. Staff treat more than 60,000 children a year, with services including cancer care, children’s surgery, treatments for diabetes, respiratory illnesses, allergies, urinary and bowel conditions, plus care for sick and premature babies.

There are over 230 NHS charities in the UK, and together they help our health service go further than would be possible with government funding alone. They fund innovative research and pioneering new technologies, accommodation and support to make hospital feel less like hospital, and extra services so more of us can access better care.

Rankin, who has photographed the likes of the Queen, David Bowie, Madonna and Kate Moss, adds: “The thing I’ve learned from all these people is how much of a massive contribution NHS charities make to the national health service. You don’t realise the scale of support that’s out there – they fund research and new technologies, accommodation and support for patients, and extra services so more of us can access better care. I used to work in the NHS but honestly had no idea, and it really has been eye opening.”

Ellie Orton OBE, Chief Executive at NHS Charities Together, said: “It’s been incredibly inspiring meeting Evie, and hearing her story. 75 years after the NHS was founded, charity support has never been more important, and with your help we can continue to help the NHS for generations to come. On 5 July, you can support the charity that means the most to you and celebrate 75 years of the NHS by hosting an NHS Big Tea party. We hope some of these stories show the astonishing impact one person’s generosity can have.”

Julie Cooper, Head of Grants at N&N Hospitals Charity, said: “We are so grateful to everyone who helps us to support better care at our NHS hospitals. Evie, who was one of our Charity Champions last year, has been an absolute inspiration.  We thank Evie together with her family and friends for the incredible support they have given to our Jenny Lind Children’s Hospital.”

‘Love and Charity: A History of Giving in the NHS’ will be exhibited at the Saatchi gallery in London from 31st May – 11th June 2023 and is free to the public.

To find out more information about how you can support your local NHS charity visit


To arrange an interview with a case study or spokesperson, please contact:

 Lizzie Dowell, Head of Media at NHS Charities Together

T: 07850265502


Holly Flaum, Senior Media & Communications Officer at NHS Charities Together

T: 07985612552


Other stories in the exhibition

Everyone involved in the exhibition has a powerful personal connection to the impact of NHS charities, with other stories on display including Beryl Fairclough – the 76-year-old brains behind Barnsley Hospital Charity’s fundraising dream team ‘the Sensational Six’, who use their unmatched knitting skills to raise thousands for new NHS equipment, facilities and services locally, and Stefan Edmondson, a Consultant Clinical Scientist at University Hospitals Birmingham, who helped lead the reconstructive surgery for Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Malala Yousafzai after she was shot in the head by the Taliban. The UHB team’s pioneering work is only possible thanks to 3D printers funded by University Hospitals Birmingham Charity.

About NHS Charities Together
NHS Charities Together is the national charity caring for the NHS. Working with a network of more than 230 NHS charities, they provide extra help in every hospital, health board, ambulance, community, and mental health trust across the UK.

Thanks to generous support from the British public, NHS Charities Together has to date allocated over £148 million to help NHS charities, staff, patients and volunteers. This includes projects dedicated to supporting NHS staff – such as helplines, counselling, and psychological support for post-traumatic stress disorder – and patient focused initiatives like training for emergency responders, research into long COVID, and specialist equipment. They’ve also funded 325 community partnership projects to tackle health inequalities and prevent ill health in the community – to help the NHS as it recovers from the most challenging time in its history.

The NHS Big Tea is sponsored by Morrisons.

To find out more visit

About N&N Hospitals Charity

Norfolk & Norwich Hospitals Charity supports better care for the hospitals forming part of the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, including the Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital, Cromer & District Hospital, and the Jenny Lind Children’s Hospital.  The charity funds additional state-of-the-art medical equipment, improvements to the hospital environment and support for patients, wellbeing and development for the Trust’s NHS staff, and ground-breaking research.  More information can be found at


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NICU dads complete epic trek to raise thousands

Two dads have completed a gruelling 190-mile challenge, raising thousands of pounds for the N&N where their babies spent their first days.

Matt Dyke and Martin Church braved howling wind, torrential rain, blisters and muscle strains in an epic trek from Cumbria to Yorkshire in just five days.

Mabel in her incubator

So far, they have raised more than £8,500 for the N&N Hospitals Charity neo-natal intensive care fund.

The NICU unit is close to the hearts of both men – Martin’s first child, Charlie, arrived eight weeks early in 2018, then his second, Mabel, was 14 weeks premature in December 202, while Matt’s daughter Rosa was five weeks premature in 2014 and all three treated on the unit.

Their route took them through the Lake District, over the Pennines, across the North York Moors ascending a total height twice as high as Mount Everest’s base camp to the summit.

Martin, from Horsford, said after reaching the end: “I am just so tired – I just want to get home, see the family, have a pizza and a good night’s sleep.

“The highlights were some stunning scenery, especially in the Lake District which was full of lambs, and the team camaraderie.  The lowlights were a knee injury which meant I let Matt go on at his own pace, and the tough terrain which was bleak at times.”

Matt added: “It was much harder than we imagined. Even the flatter bits, where we thought we would make up time were tricky – boggy, slippery and you were having to jump over or walk around obstructions, mud and water.

“Our bodies are battered, bruised, blistered and swollen but we’re completely overwhelmed by the support, words of encouragement and donations received.

Both men paid tribute to their support team – driver Colm McGilway and sports therapists Sally Ling and Lisa Payne from Up and Running Treatments plus various friends and guests who joined them for stretches of the walk to boost sometimes flagging morale. They also thanked Stebbings Car Superstore at King’s Lynn for donating a crew van and tank of fuel.


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500 cheers for fabulous fundraiser Louisa

With a good luck message from Scottish music duo The Proclaimers still ringing in her ears, fundraiser Louisa Dye finally completed her 500-mile walk challenge.

Louisa, from Sprowston, battled shin splints, blisters and every imaginable weather conditions to raise more than £7,600 for the N&N Hospitals Charity, to support the oncology department at the N&N.

The challenge throughout March was in memory of her parents – Stuart Clarke, who died from pancreatic cancer in 2006 and mother, Christine, who died after being diagnosed with breast cancer and its secondaries in 2021.

Louisa was joined on her daily walks by Cockapoo, Stanley, and dozens of friends and family, as well as pupils from Langley Prep School at Taverham Hall.

Louisa said: “In 2020, I started including walking into my fitness routine, anything from 5 miles to 24 miles.

“Since losing my mum, walking has kept me occupied and filled a gap in my life that mum filled. On one of my many walks on route to Whitlingham in November 2022, I came up with an idea to use walking as an advantage, to raise money for the oncology fund.

“This supports patients at the Weybourne Day Unit where patients receive chemotherapy and Mulbarton ward – the focus is on the treatment and care of those suffering from and living with cancer, both close to my heart as both my mum and dad used these facilities.”

Lynn Crombie, from the N&N Hospitals Charity, said: “No-one ever doubted that Louisa was going to smash this challenge, but to raise such an incredible amount is extra special – what an inspiration to us all!

“This will make such a difference to our oncology team and will benefit so many patients and staff here at the N&N.”

You can still make a donation here: louisa Dye is fundraising for Norfolk and Norwich Hospitals Charity (

For more information about the charity and how you can support us, go to


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Farmer’s London Marathon challenge for NICU

A farmer is incorporating his day job into his London Marathon training, to raise funds for the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital.

Ian Metson, a farmer from Essex, was inspired to support the unit after the team cared for the son of shepherdess Hannah Whiteley and partner Frasier.

Teddie was born at Broomfield Hospital last July weighing 5lb 5oz and later transferred him to the N&N, where he was diagnosed with the rare genetic disorder Brain-lung-thyroid syndrome

Ian said: “Teddie was sedated and ventilated for seven weeks to help him breath whilst he got stronger with steroids, antibiotics and amazing care from nurses and consultants. At three weeks, Hannah and Fraiser took part in new genetic testing which resulted in a diagnosis at five weeks old.

“During their stay at the N&N, they stayed on the ward for four weeks and then in the parents’ house on site at the hospital.

“Teddie, Hannah and Fraiser were at the N&N for 71 days before being transferred back to paediatrics at Broomfield. They lived at the hospital with only one night back home.

“Teddie is now seven months old and wouldn’t be where he is now without the outstanding care from the staff at N&N NICU.”

The family stayed part of the time in McKee House – a five-bedroom property just a two-minute walk from the N&N which offers double en-suite bedrooms, a shared kitchen, lounge and dining area.

It provides a base for parents of premature or unwell babies, receiving specialist, life-saving care at a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) for a nominal fee, be that a week. a month or longer.

Hannah said: “The nurses became family and without the expert care and compassion for us and Teddie the whole situation could have been a thousand times worse.”

Ian added: “I’m raising money to help fund state-of-the art equipment used for the NICU babies, to support families living their lives in the four walls of the ward until their babies are well enough to move on, and to assist in helping the nurses get the additional training they require and rest areas to ensure they are looked after as well as they look after their patients and parents.

“Please support such an amazing cause, they deserve our help. Teddie is only one baby out of thousands of unwell, premature babies supported by NICU at the N&N.”

You can support Ian and the team at NICU by making a donation here





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Mountain charity challenge for research team

An intrepid team of fundraisers are aiming high in a charity challenge to support research and development at the N&N.

The team of 10, who all work at the Quadram Institute, will travel to Wales on 9 June to prepare to climb the 1,085 metre (3,560 feet) Snowdon the following day.

They will be climbing The Llanberis Path, a distance of nine miles and hope to reach the summit and come back down in between six to eight hours.

Becky Woodcock, Research Study Administrator, and one of climbers said: “We wanted to do something for charity and the N&N Hospitals Charity was one that we could all relate to. None of us are exceptionally fit, nor are we experienced hikers/climbers so it will certainly be a challenge to say the least.”

The team are busy training in their spare time to make sure they are all prepared for the climb in June, and have already raised £670 towards their £1,000 target.

The Quadram Institute, on the Norwich Research Park, is a state-of-the-art facility for bioscience and clinical research and home to the NNUH Endoscopy Centre.

If you would like to support Becky and the team, which will benefit research at the N&N, you can support them here:





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