I would first like to thank Valley News for publishing the most enlightening letters from readers!

I wish, though, that it came out weekly so replies like I am making stay fresh in the mind. Ms Veronica Burton naming me not once, but four times, for mentioning how many perceive nurses with fondness, and the way they go about their rounds. Poor old Florence would be quite upset if she came back to see this petty excuse coming from a nurse that has a prestigious degree when, in her time, many nurses could possibly just read and write!

When my wife died just two years ago, that very morning she asked me to apply for the post of governor at the hospital. Five hours later, she died in my arms.

I did apply, attended four meetings and talked to many other applicants. Not once but many times the question was asked: ‘Why is it that nurses now have to go to uni to get a degree?’

The last time it was asked was when the new CEO attended but also added: ‘Why are we short of them?’ I already knew the answer to both as my son has three degrees, one a Masters, and now has gone into training for a nursing degree.

I would add to Veronica Burton, that while I made a statement in my application for a governor in not more than 100 words, I was the only applicant out of five that stood, actually made a statement to bring back our own nursing school in the infirmary. Also do it, not by uni, but by the new Government Apprentice Degree method (This I checked with Jeremy Hunt) that does not expose the student to expensive loans, and they can be paid to do so!

I did not get my wish because the only people allowed to vote were ‘The League of Friends of Salisbury Hospital’ who number now just over 1,000.

Why would the public deny students in nursing free entry to degree level? Some kind of ‘Friends’ I think!

Veronica was my wife’s dream and mine also. Does this show just how wrong you were to make the suggestion and accusations and use my name to suggest what a bad person I was?

I have more to do to get a better deal for our nurses: first give them free parking – they have earned that many times over. Also, give nurses the right to vote for their own governors: they have earned that right also.

John Wigglesworth, Durrington

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