Portsmouth NHS cleaner scoops top award

Rose Bennett, 76, a domestic assistant at St James' Hospital, is nominated for the NHS Parliamentary Awards Lifetime Achievement award.
Rose Bennett, 76, a domestic assistant at St James' Hospital, is nominated for the NHS Parliamentary Awards Lifetime Achievement award.

 ‘I owe them my life more than once

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DOMESTIC assistant Rose Bennett has dedicated her life and career to the NHS and yesterday got recognition at a House of Commons awards.

Rose has worked at St James’ Hospital in Milton for 46 years and won the national NHS ‘Health Heroes’ award for Lifetime Achievement.

She was nominated by Portsmouth South MP Stephen Morgan for her tireless work in facilities services at the hospital which, over the past years, has had a huge positive impact on the experience of tens of thousands of patients.

Mr Morgan said: ‘I’m immensely proud that Rose has won today.

‘She is truly an unsung hero and, as the son of a hospital cleaner, I know what a difference facilities staff like Rose make to our health service.

‘Her dedication and talent for improving lives of fellow NHS workers and patients is outstanding.’ 

Rose started working for the NHS in Portsmouth in 1971, joining her mother and aunt who had already been working as domestic assistants for several years.

Her two daughters have also worked in the NHS, both for 29 years, one as a chef and the other as a business manager. 

Rose was presented with her award at a special ceremony by Sir Simon Stevens, Chief Executive of NHS England, alongside her two daughters.

Mr Morgan said: ‘Rose faced stiff competition but she has consistently gone above and beyond the call of duty to help people in our city and her victory is very much deserved.

‘Rose has quite rightly been described as a one woman recruitment and retention machine and her daughters have also spent over 25 years in the NHS, so today is very much a family affair.

‘I’m delighted for them and want to thank them again for their collective century of service.