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Martyn Edwards funds canteen bus for COVID-19 ward staff

North Yorkshire range manufacturer Martyn Edwards Frank Ford (ME-FF) has helped fund a purpose-built canteen bus for hardworking COVID-19 ward staff at NHS North Tees & Hartlepool Hospital.

As well as fabricating frying equipment, the Redcar business has worked with the NHS hospital for many years manufacturing stainless steel sink units, hand washing facilities and protection for expensive medical equipment and machinery.

MD Dave Atkinson was keen to help after getting wind of the fact staff couldn’t use the hospital’s canteen facilities because they were fully togged up with PPE for the COVID ward.

The new bus, parked directly outside the ward, is equipped with vending machines and break out areas, providing a safe space for staff to take their breaks without the need to change out of their PPE.

Dave comments: “We got together with some of the other contractors and stumped up enough money to fund a canteen bus, which is parked right outside the COVID ward. Staff can walk into the bus, sit down in their PPE and have that respite.

“Before this, staff couldn’t use the canteen without throwing away all their PPE, showering down and changing clothes, so it was virtually impossible. Many were sitting down in the ward to have their sandwiches and not being able to get away from things. This provides a little bit of comfort and what we would all expect if we had to work a 12-hour shift.”

Working with NHS North Tees & Hartlepool Hospital over the years, ME-FF has got to know many of the staff and is proud that his company could help.

Dave adds: “When you work with your clients for a long time, as we have with North Tees and Hartlepool General Hospital, you get to know everybody personally, we know their names. If we can help to make their lives and their colleague’s lives a bit easier, a bit more comfortable, during these difficult times then we’ll do it.”

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