Helping south Wales frontline health workers


A Wales & West Utilities colleague is helping south Wales healthcare workers by making ‘ear savers’ for frontline staff in hospitals across the region.

Marshfield’s Jenny Brenton-Davies has been busy recycling milk cartons to make ear savers which are worn behind the head and grip the elastic straps on the facemasks being worn by healthcare professionals up and down the country.

Jenny, who works as a Network Control Manager for Wales & West Utilities, explains:

“As the Covid-19 situation became more apparent in the UK, I started looking at the ways people were helping. I had seen ear-savers being made with 3D printers and thought ‘I can do that!’”

Jenny knew that the ear savers were mostly being made with plastic so began looking around her home for items she could recycle. She hit the ideas jackpot and started collecting 4-pint milk cartons. Cutting off the ends and the handle, she was left with a flat sheet of plastic – perfect for making the ear savers.

“I have made a lot of these now and am looking to make elastic ones too. I have sent batches to the Royal Gwent Hospital and University Hospital of Wales and have received some lovely messages of thanks saying what a difference they are making to the doctors and nurses using them.

“Our healthcare heroes are wearing personal protection equipment for the best part of each 12-hour shift and the masks around their ears can cause great discomfort.

“These ear savers help prevent ear chafing and make their lives just a little easier. I can’t imagine what they are going through each day and I am just glad to help.”

 Jenny has put together some simple instructions so that others wanting to help, can do so:

  • Get a 4-pint plastic milk bottle
  • Cut off the top, bottom and the handle, leaving a sheet of flat plastic
  • Cut strips an inch wide – you can make 8 strips out of one 4-pint milk bottle
  • Cut slits each side, so that the face mask elastic can attach

During the Covid19 pandemic, Wales & West Utilities is focused on keeping the energy flowing to homes, businesses and essential services across Wales and south west England.

Sarah Hopkins, Wales & West Utilities People & Engagement Director, said:

“Jenny is doing a fantastic job in making equipment that will help frontline NHS workers during this time and we are proud of her.

“As a company, we are urging people, who have received a letter from the NHS advising them to take additional measures to ‘shield’ themselves from Covid19, to consider joining the Priority Service Register (PSR).

 “By joining it allows us, and other energy and utility companies, to look after people who need extra support. Joining is simple and free and more information can be found at

 “We’d also like to remind people that if they do smell gas, to call 0800 111 999 as normal. You’ll be asked a few additional questions, including if you have symptoms of Covid19. We’ll still come and help you, but our teams will take some additional precautions to keep everyone safe.”