HARD working nurses at the Royal Bolton Hospital were treated to some well-deserved pampering as they were rewarded for their “courage and dedication”.

Staff from the Bolton NHS Foundation Trust joined nurses across the globe in celebrating their profession on International Nurses Day.

Beauty therapy students from Bolton College paid the hospital a visit to give nurses some well deserved pampering for the event, which takes place every year on Florence Nightingale’s birthday.

Nurses also gathered at the Royal Bolton’s chapel to reflect on the challenges nurses face and the drive to improve patient care.

Trish Armstrong-Child, director of nursing at the Bolton trust, said it was more important than ever to thank nursing staff for their work in such turbulent times for the NHS.

She said: “As an organisation we wanted to recognise the importance of the profession and the fantastic work our nurses do here in Bolton.

“We also felt it was important to celebrate the day as a thank you to them. We have a diverse range of nursing staff working in the hospital and in the community — from health care assistants to ward matrons — and every single one of them has a contribution to make.

"I think these are very turbulent times for nursing as a profession so it is more important than ever to recognise the challenges for the job.

“There’s no doubt nursing has been through a difficult time over the past year nationally.

“We absolutely should not defend the indefensible but we should remember to celebrate some of the fantastic work that goes on.

“That’s why we have focused on courage for International Nurses Day to make nurses to stand up for what is right and to also stand up for their profession.”

Baskets of fruit donated by Asda were sent out to every ward and a pop-up salon was set up in the staff sport and social club.

Jane Brierley, beauty therapy lecturer Bolton College, said: “Our students have been really busy all day giving the nurses some well deserved pampering.

"It has been a really good opportunity for our students too to practise all of the different treatments.”