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New carers’ art exhibition unveiled at The Northumbria hospital

Wednesday, 14 June, 2017
New carers’ art exhibition unveiled at The Northumbria hospital

A new exhibition has been unveiled at The Northumbria hospital showcasing the work of carers in Northumberland.

Entitled ‘On Hold’, the work has been put together by the Carers Northumberland caring crafting group and depicts how carers put many aspects of their lives on hold caring for their loved ones, with many aspirations, such as careers, also put on hold.

The exhibition, on display on the corridor towards theatres and critical care, features a series of square blankets with embroidery, images and decoration which reflect on past memories and current day situations. 

The exhibition has been organised by Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust’s Bright charity which has for the past 15 years funded the development of an award-winning healing arts programme which uses art as a therapeutic medium to improve the hospital environment for patients, visitors and staff.

It helps mark Carers Week 2017 which runs until 18 June and raises awareness of caring, recognising the contribution carers make to families and communities throughout the UK.

Sara Long, information and development officer for Carers Northumberland, said: “The group, which has been running for a little over a year now, was borne out of a desire to engage with more carers in a range of ways, offering opportunities to come together over common interests with others and build new social links.

“The carers who have been involved said that the group offers them the opportunity to become completely absorbed in something other than their caring role, it was a complete break for them and offers them the opportunity to have a good laugh.

“We were lucky to work with the arts programme BAIT and creative connector Jane Sutcliffe who brought in a range of artists and developed the project for the carers to produce a piece of work representing their interests and caring roles.

“We were extremely pleased to work with the trust and have our work displayed at The Northumbria hospital and the carers involved have been thrilled to be a part of this project.”

Brenda Longstaff, head of arts and patient environment programme at Northumbria Healthcare, said: “We are delighted to work with Carers Northumberland and have their exhibition on display in our hospital.

“Since we opened our Northumbria hospital two years ago, art has played a very important role and we’ve had very positive comments about the work on show.

“So far many diverse groups have played a part in this work and it’s really important that our local communities are able to contribute in this way and share their talents. We’re really pleased that this exhibition further enhances the hospital environment for our patients and visitors.”

The unveiling of the exhibition was attended by trust chairman Alan Richardson and Alison Marshall, non-executive director and chair of the trust’s charitable funds committee.

For further information about the trust’s healing arts programme contact 0191 203 1354 or email

If you care for a friend or family member and need information or support you can contact Carers Northumberland on 01670 320025 or at