Windrush & the NHS 75 years on: a new generation of nurses & midwives | Celebrating the NHS turning 75

Celebrating the NHS turning 75

NHS 75 To help celebrate the NHS turning 75 this week, we are shining a spotlight on the work of some of our NHS heroes across Nottingham University Hospitals (NUH) as well as remembering key milestones for the Trust, including when King Charles was a patient at the Queen’s Medical Centre and celebrating 45 years of clinical genetics at NUH.    

Here you can find the latest news and stories relating to our celebrations as we begin a week of recognising 75 years of the National Health Service.  

At NUH, the 75th anniversary provides the opportunity to reflect on past achievements and recognise where we are today whilst looking ahead to the future, with our People First report helping to set the direction for the Trust to reflect on what is needed.  

We will also be reflecting on the huge achievements of the NHS as a whole such as treating over a million people a day in England and the fact that the NHS touches all of our lives.  

When it was founded in 1948, the NHS was the first universal health system to be available to all, free at the point of delivery.  

From the world’s first CT scan on a patient in 1971, revolutionising the way doctors examine the body, to the world’s first test-tube baby born in 1978, the NHS has delivered huge medical advances. 

Below are some NUH NHS stories which we hope you will enjoy to celebrate this huge milestone.  

Windrush & the NHS 75 years on: a new generation of nurses & midwives

Applications to the Windrush Leadership programme opened on 22 June – the 75th anniversary of the Empire Windrush arriving in England. 

The National Health Service was founded less than a month later, and these landmarks in UK history saw the Windrush generation becoming the backbone of our NHS. 

To mark this shared anniversary, a Nottingham nurse has told of the impact the Windrush Leadership programme has had on him – both professionally and personally – and urged colleagues to sign up. 

“Every session was meaningful and left a mark in my heart as a nurse and aspiring leader,” said Marion Mangalindan, deputy charge nurse at Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust. 

The programme is run by The Florence Nightingale Foundation (FNF) and Health Education England (HEE) and is open to NHS nurses and midwives who are descendants of the Windrush generation or who are from an ethnic minority background. 

The docking of the HMT Empire Windrush, carrying 492 passengers from Caribbean countries, in Tilbury, Essex, in 1948, has become a symbol of how migration transformed and UK society. The Windrush generation played a vital role in establishing the NHS, working as porters, orderlies and cleaners. It took around four years for them to be allowed to train as nurses. Even then, the majority were able to train only as State Enrolled Nurses (SENs) rather than State Registered Nurses (SRNs). 

The descendants of those Windrush nurses and midwives remain a significant part of the NHS workforce; the Windrush Leadership programme aims to close the gap in career opportunities. 

Marion has been a nurse for 15 years, starting in his native Philippines and moving to the UK in 2017. 

“I got stranded in the Philippines at the peak of the pandemic, and I gathered other nurses who were in the same situation and created a support system. This experience motivated me to work on my leadership potential to be a transformational leader that inspires people and leads by example and genuine service.” 

Fear of a lack of support stopped Marion from using his leadership and management experience in England. The Windrush programme boosted his confidence – and he’s now a deputy charge nurse and clinical nurse specialist for interventional radiology at NUH. 

As an alumnus, he gets on-going networking and leadership development opportunities through events, webinars, media engagement and policy thought leadership. He’s also part of the Filipino Nurses Association UK, offering ongoing support to international nurses. 

“The programme and my co-alumni’s tales of success and failures boosted my confidence and allowed me to step out my comfort zone. The programme allowed me to connect with nurses and nurse leaders who share my passion, goals and objectives. 

“An unforgettable highlight was the Commemorative Service for Florence Nightingale. Just being there with all the other nurses – FNF alumni - was amazing.” 

In the week that a 38-strong cohort of international nurses arrived in the UK to join NUH, Marion – who had indefinite leave to remain - has had his application to become a British citizen approved. 

“I just returned from a holiday home – the first in three years – and the citizenship was a pleasant present to come back to – I’m delighted and grateful. 

“This milestone makes me question why I do what I do. Finally, after more than six years in the UK, particularly Nottingham, I can say that this is truly my home away from home. I am hopeful that I can contribute more to the coming years.” 

He’s urging others to register for the programme. “I still vividly remember the joy I felt after getting the email confirming my place on the course,” he said. “Think about where you want to go in our career, what you want to achieve – and apply. 

“The greatest failure is the failure to try. Hence, I am congratulating you in advance, and as an FNF alumnus I commit myself in supporting you to the best of my ability.” 

Applications for the 2024 Windrush Leadership programme opened on Thursday 22 June and are open until Monday 21 August. The programme starts on 20 February 2024 find out more here - Windrush Leadership Programme - Florence Nightingale Foundation ( 

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