HCSW who reaches 50 years at Cardiff and Vale UHB is November’s Health Hero


A healthcare support worker who has reached the 50 year milestone at Cardiff and Vale University Health Board has been named November’s Health Hero.

Linda Gandy, 72 from Llandaff, Cardiff started as an auxiliary nurse at Cardiff Royal Infirmary in 1969 and has never looked back. Linda has now worked at the Health Board for 50 years as a Health Care Support worker and has no plans to retire as she loves her job and caring for people.

Linda said, “After I had my son I didn’t want to return to an office environment and wanted to work with people. My sister was doing her nurse training and at that time in 1969 they were taking on auxiliary nurses so I did a few hours on weekends at Cardiff Royal Infirmary.

“I started my career on Coronation Ward which was a women’s medical unit and then I moved to Mametz Ward which was a really busy trauma ward and I spent about 20 years there. I remember one night the nurse in charge said ‘you’re starting on casualty next week’ and I was a bit worried about that but I loved it and have been in that area ever since.

“When CRI closed in 1999 I moved to University Hospital of Wales to work at the new Emergency Unit which was really exciting and then 13 years ago I moved to Barry Minor Injuries Unit to do plaster and dressings. This became a nurse led unit and it has been such a lovely place to work. Being able to provide a service in a community hospital that the people of Barry value is a privilege.

“I don’t have a highlight of my career as such but when I was first moved to Accident and Emergency it was a bit of a shock because it is a hectic and busy area to work in, especially after working on the wards. But I took to it like a duck to water and I have loved it ever since. No matter how busy it gets I have never had a day when I haven’t wanted to come to work.

“The thing I love most about my job is the people and I still love my job even after all this time. People keep saying to me ‘why don’t you retire’ but I don’t feel ready to retire yet. I work part time so do Monday, Wednesday and Friday and I just love everything I do.”

Wayne Parsons, Lead Nurse for Emergency and Acute Medicine said “Linda has been a role model for many a staff member throughout her career in the Emergency Unit and she epitomises everything about Cardiff and Vale’s values and behaviours, along with being clinically excellent. Linda is frontline when dealing with patients, but always works each day with a smile on her face, her work ethic is incredible. Linda is a credit not only to the Emergency Unit, but to Cardiff and Vale.”

Len Richards, Chief Executive at Cardiff and Vale University Health Board said “Linda has had an incredible career and to reach 50 years and show no signs of slowing down is a testament to her passion for caring for others. I was delighted to meet with Linda to celebrate this achievement with her and hear about her career highlights. I’d like to offer Linda a huge congratulations for this remarkable achievement, and wish her the best of luck for the remainder of her career with us at Cardiff and Vale, and beyond.”

If you’d like to nominate a member of staff from Cardiff and Vale University Health Board to be a Health Hero, please email [email protected] with your story.