Yesterday our Chair Andrew Haigh bade farewell to the Trust after seven years at the helm, which included memorable highlights such as an encounter with a Stormtrooper and his own wedding to Ali at HRI Chapel last June. He'd become known for his whacky ties and for setting up an Ant and Dec style presenting double act at all CHFT events with our CEO Owen Williams.
There was a presentation - and a hint of a tear - before his very last Council of Governors meeting in the HRI Boardroom yesterday.
Owen said under Andrew's leadership CHFT had become one of the best Trusts in the country. He said Andrew ensured the quality of our patient care was always top prioirty. He said: "What matters to Andrew is the quality of care we provide to our patients and that feels like common currency. It is in our DNA to think about our patients and to prioritise them ahead of money issues and right now, that can be very difficult to do.
"We feel privileged to have worked with you at this Trust . You have made it one of the best in the country. "
Owen read our a recent thank you email had had received from a patient on Ward 11 and said it typified care at CHFT during Andrew's chairmanship. The patient hailed the caring and friendly atmosphere on the ward. He read: "All the staff get on well and make Ward 11 a happy place. You oversee a hospital where all staff provide exemplary care."
Lead Governor Brian Moore thanked Andrew for being open and informative and making sure the Governors' voices were heard and current and former Governors' leads Victoria Pickles and Ruth Mason (pictured) also attended his farewell.
Today, his successor Philip Lewer - pictured with Andrew - was heading up his first Trust Board meeting and in next week's CHFT Weekly you can read his amazing background - how he enjoys car pool karaoke with his four adorable grand-daughters... and a shock revelation that he's from Lancashire!
Farewell Andrew and a big welcome to Philip!