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Nicky Naylor and Sue Fridlington at the patio outside Ward 33

A wonderful gift to Ward 33 at the Queen’s Centre

Last week we met with Nicky Naylor, the wife of Mike Naylor who sadly lost his battle with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia at the age of 37 in April 2021. Mike, a passionate landscape gardener, had spent time at the Queen’s Centre’s Ward 33 where he spoke about his dream to return and create an outdoor space for patients, loved ones and staff to use in the gardens there.

Following her loss, Nicky spoke with staff to determine how she could give thanks for the incredible care Mike received. Mike felt better both mentally and physically being out amongst nature and the garden was his favourite place to be; Nicky wanted somewhere where patients could go to feel this same positive impact during their treatment on the ward, at such a challenging time in their lives. To Nicky, a bespoke patio felt like the perfect way to gift the ward and hospital in Mike’s memory.

The beautiful patio, which can be viewed down the corridor and to the main desk at Ward 33, has been lovingly put together as a calm and comfortable space for patients, visitors and staff. During the Covid-19 lockdowns, the patio became a space where inpatients could meet with their loved ones safely, and the staff often use the area to enjoy their lunchbreaks.

Susan Fridlington, from Ward 33, spoke of the importance of being able to oversee patients taking time outside during treatments. The positioning means patients can be comfortable and close to the ward whilst they are receiving care.

WISHH Charity Manager, Lisa Whitton said: “It has been fantastic to work alongside Nicky, her family and staff to help make this beautiful patio area a reality for the benefit of patients, their loved ones and staff. We would like to thank everybody involved.”

Nicky told us “The gardens Mike created still live on each year and bring joy and happiness to many – a beautiful legacy and gift he has left in the world”, and with her donation his legacy will also continue at Ward 33.

As Mike would often say “Live each day as if it were your last, and garden as though you will live forever”, we can’t think of a better way to pay homage to him and bring some peace and joy to those who visit.