Angels of the Great North Run

Chemotherapy unit nurses (left to right) Rosie Livingston, Pauline Wallace, Joanne Thomson and Pam Hauxwell who are taking part in the run.

Chemotherapy unit nurses (left to right) Rosie Livingston, Pauline Wallace, Joanne Thomson and Pam Hauxwell who are taking part in the run.

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THESE dedicated hospital nurses will be swapping their uniforms for tutus to tackle the Great North Run.

And the determined angels of mercy who will be winging their way up to Tyneside for the September spectacular have a finishing time in mind.

To get into work the following morning!

The fundraising four, Rosie Livingston, Joanne Thomson, Pamela Hauxwell and Pauline Wallace are part of a team of seven that work in the chemotherapy day unit at the town hospital.

The team has won the Hartlepool Mail Best of Health Awards for three years running and has now set its sights on the gruelling 13-mile slog to raise money for MS research. The nurses will tackle the race in their brightly-coloured pink tutus.

On their ward at the University Hospital of Hartlepool they are meticulous to detail as countless plaudits and letters of praise will testify.

As for race training? Maybe not as much.

“There’s still a few weeks to go” said team leader Rosie Livingston.

For the three other dedicated runners it’s much the same but with their own general fitness levels and medical knowledge they are sure they will be fine.

Chirpy Joanne Thomson joked: “Maybe we’re just natural athletes. We’re all up for it and really looking forward to it.

“We have trained of sorts and as long as we manage to get in to work on the Monday morning then we’ll be happy.”

The nurses have dominated the Mail’s prestigious health awards since they were launched in 2010.

They have repeatedly taken the team title for three years running after judges marvelled at the scores of heartfelt nominations they received year on year.

But the unassuming nurses have always maintained they are simply “doing a job they love”.

In collecting their third award at a black-tie dinner at Hardwick Hall Hotel in June the team received a standing ovation in recognition of the work they do.

They had received 20 nominations from grateful patients and their relatives with one reading: “The whole team looked after a very special friend of mine and he described them all as angels. When I look at him now as to when he started his treatment they really have worked miracles and can rightly be called angels.”

Of the unprecedented success, Rosie said: “We are delighted but also humbled that our patients take the time to put us forward for an award. There is a great team spirit in the unit and we all work well together to give people the best possible service.”

The quartet will be heading to Tyneside on September 16 for the annual fundraising spectacular which is expected to attract 54,000 runners.

The nurses regularly fundraise for their own ward and cancer-related good causes but this year are doing it to raise money to help research what drugs are available to MS sufferers.

A family member of one of the team suffers from MS and they hope people will back their efforts to help fund research into treating the crippling disease.

Joanne added: “We have always worked as a team and will do the Great North Run as a team.

“It would be brilliant if people could support us as it is vital that anyone suffering from MS gets the best help possible.

“There’s a lack of knowledge about treatments available for MS and lack of research and trials and it is important that we raise awareness about these issues.”

Anyone interested in sponsoring the nurses can visit http://beatms.mssociety.org.uk/netcommunity/thomsonsrun or contact paul.watson@northeast-press.co.uk

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