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UHDB Energy Monitor retires after nearly 60 years’ service in the NHS

Joe Sim

81-year-old Energy Monitor, Joe Sim, officially retired from his job at UHDB on Friday, 31 December, after clocking up an amazing 59 years’ service for the NHS

Joe started working as an Assistant Engineer at Pastures Hospital in Mickleover on Monday, 5 November 1962. Joe said: “I definitely have my wife to thank for this! I met my wife when she was working as a theatre Nurse at the DRI. I used to go and wait for her after work, but being a theatre nurse, there were many occasions when the operations would over run and she’d be late off shift. I kept myself entertained by taking a stroll around the site – this is when I got talking to different members of staff. One day I got speaking to the boilerman who worked there – he made me realise the hospital wasn’t just built up with Doctors and Nurses, and I believe that’s when my interest in engineering in the NHS began!”

Throughout Joe’s time working in the NHS, he has had many jobs which means he has also seen many changes. After working at the Pastures Hospital, Joe moved to work as a Senior Engineer at the Derby City Hospital in 1967, he worked there until there was a major NHS reorganisation.

In 1983 he became a member of the Executive Board, working as a Director of Works and Facilities.

Joe said: “I very much enjoyed my work on the board, we all worked so well together as a team, and I really felt like I made a positive difference.

“I have had too many roles in the NHS to name them all! In 1999, I retired after 40 years’ service – but as you can see, I’m still here 22 years later and now I am retiring again! In 2003, I came back part time as Energy Monitor.

“I’ve worked in the NHS for nearly six decades, but my most memorable moments have to be from these past couple of years! I have been lucky enough to have been nominated for not one, but two awards and won them both!

"I was nominated for a “Best Behind the Scenes Award” for the Making a Difference Awards, the Trust’s staff recognition scheme and won this at the ceremony in 2019. Then, earlier this year, I was shortlisted for a Regional NHS Lifetime Achievement Award and then went on to be awarded this on a national level. I couldn’t believe it when it was virtually presented to me by Simon Stevens, the then Chief Executive of the NHS – what an honour, tears left my eyes that day – it was very emotional for me.

“It was a big enough shock to even be nominated for both, but an even bigger one to win them both! The nominations were totally out of the blue!

“I really have loved working here I have thoroughly enjoyed every single day of my working life and I will be ever so sad to leave. I will very much miss the positive buzz of the Royal Derby Hospital corridors and the warm, friendly faces I am used to seeing.”

Paul Brooks, Director of Estates and facilities, said: “Retiring after 59 years of working in the NHS is a massive thing and I know its not something you’re going to take easily. We will all miss you so much.

“Whoever you are, just knowing Joe has mad us a better person – we’ve all learnt so much from him whether that be from his engineering skills, the stories of the NHS he has to tell or the odd joke he has to tell. Good Luck Joe and thanks for everything.”