The NHS in BSW celebrated seventy-five years of the NHS with a stunning light display at a trio of iconic local landmarks in Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire.
The famous Roman Baths in Bath, Swindon’s Central Library and Salisbury Cathedral were all illuminated in a dazzling shade of NHS blue on Wednesday 5 July to commemorate the health service’s 75th anniversary.
Sue Harriman, Chief Executive, Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Integrated Care Board, said: “People have always been at the heart of the NHS and I know so many people have the NHS in their hearts and have an enormous sense of pride seeing these iconic local landmarks bathed in blue light.
“For 75 years, the NHS has been a constant aspect of our everyday lives and something we have all relied upon at one time or another.
“I’m sure that people in Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire going about their everyday lives will have seen these anniversary light displays and were warmly reminded of their own experience of the NHS, and how it has cared for them and their families over the years.”
Richard Clewer, Chair of the Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Integrated Care Partnership said:
“The NHS plays a central role in the lives of everyone living and working in Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire. It is fantastic that we have been able to celebrate the enormous achievements it has made over the past 75 years and thank its hardworking and dedicated staff by illuminating some of our most iconic local landmarks.”
The NHS became the world’s first health service that was available for free at the point of need when it was established on Monday 5 July 1948.
Since then, the health service has grown exponentially and, as of 2023, cares for around one million people each and every day.
Cllr Jim Robbins, Leader, Swindon Borough Council, said: “I’m delighted that we were able to support this cherished service on its 75th anniversary by lighting up the Central Library blue, and I would encourage everyone to get involved in NHS75 by volunteering, supporting NHS charities or by giving blood.”
Councillor Sarah Warren, Deputy Leader, Bath & North East Somerset Council, said: “Lighting these iconic landmarks up was a small gesture of appreciation for the tireless work that the NHS staff do every day to care for people. The health service has a huge impact on our community, and we hope that these illuminations will serve as a reminder of the incredible efforts of NHS staff over the years.”
In Wiltshire, Salisbury Cathedral’s famous spire illuminated the night sky, just weeks after the globally recognised place of worship, which served as a pop-up Covid-19 vaccination clinic during the pandemic, hosted a service of celebration in honour of NHS 75.
The Very Revd Nicholas Papadopulos, Dean of Salisbury, said: “For three quarters of a century, the NHS has been at the heart of our community, caring for us, saving lives and preparing us for our dying.
“The Cathedral likewise observes key moments in life’s journey – our beginnings, and our most momentous commitments. The Cathedral too seeks to relieve suffering through practical compassion and, as a Christian community, we try to prepare for our dying in faith and with hope. God bless the NHS.”