The voices of two nurse practitioners from Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust feature in Captain Tom Moore and Michael Ball’s version of ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ which made No1 on the official UK singles chart last week.
Heather Callaghan and Gerry Finney, who work in the Emergency Departments (ED) at both Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells hospitals, successfully applied to be part of the NHS Voices of Care Choir which provided the backing vocals on the track which is raising money for NHS Charities Together.
The friends, who have known each other for more than 26 years, didn’t know who they were providing backing vocals for, only that it was for a single in aid of charity. Neither of them knew that each other were taking part in the singing event either.
Heather, from Maidstone, said: “I don’t usually have the confidence to sing in front of people but then I got the email from a colleague on Thursday 16 April asking if I knew anyone who might interested in singing on a charity single which was being put together by a high profile celebrity. I thought it might help pick me up and push me outside my comfort zone so I sent an email back saying I was interested.
“Later that day I got an email from the producer asking me to click on a link at 8pm and to record myself singing. The next day I got a message saying my recording had been selected and to tune into BBC Radio 2 at 9am. That was the first time I heard the song and found out that it was by Michael Ball in collaboration with Captain Tom Moore.
“The choir recorded a video with Michael Ball via Zoom later that day and the next morning it was on BBC News. It was all very quick.
“I cannot tell you how uplifting is has been to be involved with something like this.”
Gerry, from Chatham, who also works a Safeguarding Specialist for the Trust, said: “When I got the email about taking part thought to myself ‘why not?’
“After sending off the recording I messaged Heather saying ’you’ll never believe what I’ve just done?’ and she replied back saying she’d done the same thing!
“I’m really proud to have been involved with the song. Captain Moore embodies everything that is great about the NHS – individual strength and coming together for a common purpose – our patients. I’m sure many people have been moved by what he has achieved.”
As well as becoming the oldest artist ever to claim the UK No 1 spot, Captain Tom Moore has raised more than £28 million for NHS Charities Together after he captured the nation’s heart by walking 100 laps of his garden ahead of his 100th birthday this Thursday (30 April).
To mark the milestone, and to thank him for supporting the NHS, MTW NHS Trust has sent a birthday card to Captain Moore, the front cover of which features a portrait of him produced by Allan Javier, Senior Theatre Practitioner (Anaesthetics) at Tunbridge Wells Hospital.
Allan said: “I made the sketch as a token of gratitude to Captain Moore. He is a noble man and a good example to those on the frontline to carry on. He gives us hope.”
Chief Nurse Claire O’Brien has also recorded a special birthday message for Captain Moore which will be shared on the Trust’s social media channels on the day of his birthday.
Claire said: “What Captain Tom Moore has achieved is truly phenomenal. Most of all his efforts have united a country during this challenging time.”
To view the video which features Heather Callaghan and Gerry Finney, click here.