Text Size:


Hospital contact numbers

Doctors’ Mess at Royal Lancaster Infirmary officially reopens after refurbishment

22 January 2020

By Thomas Whitaker

After an extensive refurbishment, the Doctors’ Mess at the Royal Lancaster Infirmary (RLI) was officially reopened on January 16.

The room, which has been closed for renovation and redecoration since late October 2019, has been given a complete makeover. The renovation was possible thanks to a one-off £30,000 payment from the Department of Health to improve the working lives of doctors.

The doctors’ mess has always been an integral part of medical culture. It stems back to the days when doctors were on duty for long hours but not necessarily working. Therefore, they had to have somewhere where they could retreat while waiting to be called. The term is also used to indicate the groups of military personnel who belong to separate messes, such as the Officers’ mess.

Trainee doctors had been voting since the turn of the year for the person they wished to see open the new mess at the RLI. The doctor who received the majority of the votes was FY1 Doctor Nick Evans, who was described by his peers as “caring”, “respectful”, “kind”, “considerate”, “compassionate”, “very approachable” and an “amazing doctor”.

Dr Evans, who is aiming to become a specialist in heart surgery, said: “I feel honoured and proud to have been nominated by my peers. It’s an amazing gesture and I think the new mess looks amazing. It’s a really good space for the doctors to have time away from the ward and to be able to rest. It’s a colossal improvement.

“The room looks so much brighter and inviting. I am really happy with the new mess. From the sofa beds to the coffee machine, it looks so much better and I’m sure it will be used a lot more often.”

Dr Evans was accompanied at the reopening event by Marwan Bukhari, Interim Director of Medical and Post-Graduate Education and Leanne Benson, Medical Education Manager at the RLI.

Dr Bukhari said: “It’s a great development in enhancing trainee doctors’ lives during their time here.”

Leanne Benson, who helped organise the reopening, said: “The new mess is looking fabulous; it looks fresh, light and more spacious. This facility will provide a comfortable and safe space for doctors to unwind, take a break and rest.

“All credit to the Capital Team and Trainee Representatives for working together on the re-vamp; they’ve done a fantastic job.”

The new mess comes with a fresh work station with three new computers so the doctors can do clinical work away from the ward in a quiet and relaxing area.

Dr Evans said: “I feel the fact we have three brand new computers is a real help that we will all benefit from. I’m glad they are all on one desk together.”

Dr Evans said he was “humbled” to be nominated by his peers as he cut the ribbon.