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As you will have heard, it was announced on Thursday, 9th September 2022 that Her Majesty, The Queen sadly passed away.

Our sincere condolences go to the Royal Family and our thoughts will be with them through this incredibly difficult time.

Amanda Pritchard, the Chief Executive of NHS England, has led our tributes, praising the lifelong commitment to public service shown by HM The Queen, and how it was the proudest moment of the NHS when she awarded NHS staff the George Cross earlier this year.

That award marked both our response to the pandemic and the compassion and commitment shown to patients over the last 74 years.

We were privileged to see these same values from HM The Queen herself when she visited our hospitals.

Firstly in 2012, along with the Duke of Edinburgh, she officially opened our new hospitals on the Oxford Road Campus, a pivotal milestone in our history of striving to give our patients the best possible care.

Then, in the aftermath of the Manchester Arena attack, she undertook a visit which helped comfort and boost the morale of patients, their families, our staff and volunteers, at the most terrible of times.

Naturally, these were two very different occasions, but her compassion, humility and genuine interest and wish to help people were clear during both visits.

The Trust will be marking this great loss by flying our flags at half-mast and with condolence books, which will be available to both patients and staff.

We will also be joining the rest of the NHS, and the country, in further tributes to her immense public service over the last 70 years.

She was a symbol of stability and consistency, and she will be missed.

Best wishes

Kathy Cowell OBE DL