"What are we going to do without our Judith'll Fix-It?" asks Gary Boothby

Our finance and procurement admin Judith Cruickshank, who has worked in the department since starting work at the Trust more than 35 years ago retires today. Her director of finance Gary Boothby pulled out the stops with his speech in front of a packed top floor at Acre Mills yesterday as her colleagues joined her to wish her well.

Judith started with us in January 1983, when the pound coin was introduced, petrol was 37p per gallon and the Flying Pickets had a Christmas number 1 with Only You. Oh and a number of our current finance colleagues were born in the same year!

Gary, said: "Judith's organisational skills are second to none, and she recently was our chief co-ordinator when we moved the whole department from Acre House to Acre Mills.

"I want to give my personal thanks for all her support over the years, but I know the whole department feel the same. What are we going to do without our Judith'll Fix It?"

Comms managed to grab a few minutes with Judith to hear more about her time here:

"I originally started training as a medical secretary at Huddersfield Technical College, but back then unemployment was really high, and it was a struggle to get a job at all.

"I knew I wanted to work in the NHS after doing work experience in the General Office at St Luke's, so just started to apply for roles. I think I just fell lucky getting the job.

"The funny thing is that maths was my worst subject at school, so it always amuses me I've worked in finance (even in a support role) for this long!"

Judith works as part of a dynamic duo alongside Betty Sewell who is Gary's PA. When we spoke to them about what they'll miss, they almost finished each other's sentences "Every day we have a laugh and a smile".

Retirement gifts included walking poles, a music satchel, a saxophone sling, a choral folder, a bottle of pink gin, a scarf and a gift voucher. 

Judith started playing the saxophone when she got married in 1987. She'd always played the flute but really wanted to play the sax. Her mum vetoed it saying it was far too noisy. So when she left home to get married she decided to start playing.