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Patients enjoy vintage tea party at the Julian Hospital

​Patients, their family members and staff enjoyed a 1950s style tea party on Sandringham Ward at the Julian Hospital in Norwich.

It was the idea of Petra Cutmore, the activities co-ordinator on the ward which provides specialist psychiatric care for older people.

Nurses adapted their own uniforms in the style of the 1950s, with a total of 12 members of staff dressing up for the event.

Debbie Chowns, Acting Clinical Team Leader, and Wendy Cogman, Clinical Support Worker, used their sewing machines to take everybody back to the era of starched white cotton aprons, white sleeve cuffs, and nurses’ caps, while Ward Administrator Mark Hewitt donned a doctor’s white coat, stethoscope and dickie bow tie.

Staff decorated the ward’s dining room with bunting and laid tables with vintage linen tablecloths and china. Acting Ward Manager Debbie made vintage cake stands from china plates.

Staff baked homemade cakes, served pots of tea, and kept everybody topped up with scones and cream, all served on crockery from the era. Patients and staff had even visited local charity shops in search of bargains from the 1950s.

Music from the decade played in the background while they all enjoyed their afternoon taking a step back in time.

“Everybody pulled together," said Charge Nurse Sharon King. "There was a fantastic atmosphere and the patients, relatives, staff and managers all enjoyed it.

“Some of the patients had been quite unwell but they joined in, had smiles on their faces, were chatting away and were really engaged. It was a great experience for everyone who took part.

“The vintage tea party was Petra’s idea and, with the staff’s enthusiasm, everyone entered into the spirit of it.”

Caption: Dressed up and ready to party - staff on Sandringham Ward

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