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Glastonbury crew help build the NHS Nightingale Hospital in Bristol

Glastonbury crew help build the NHS Nightingale Hospital in Bristol

Emily Eavis commended the Glasto crew who’d normally be at Worthy Farm building the Festival

Following the cancellation of Glastonbury 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic – The crew who normally builds Glastonbury Festival has helped put together a new hospital.

The NHS Nightingale hospital in Bristol which has been opened by the Earl of Wessex in a virtual ceremony, can provide up to 300 intensive care beds for COVID-19 patients if required.

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Acknowledging the hard work put in by the crew who’d normally be at Worthy Farm building the Festival, Glastonbury organiser, Emily Eavis, said in a tweet earlier today (May 6): “So proud of all our crew who’d normally be here on the farm building a festival but instead helped as part of the team putting together the Bristol Nightingale Hospital. An incredible achievement, built in just 24 days.”

The hospital was built in 24 days at the University of the West of England’s (UWE) Frenchay campus and was officially opened by Prince Edward in a virtual ceremony last month (April 27) – which was also attended by health secretary Matt Hancock and NHS chief executive Simon Stevens.

“It is a somewhat curious experience to be asked to open a facility which we hope will never be required,” Prince Edward said.

“To everyone assigned to work here, thank you. Thank you for being here when you are needed.”

The royal follows in the footsteps of Prince Charles, Prince William and the Duchess of Cornwall, who have all opened Nightingale field hospitals last month.

The facility will by run by North Bristol NHS Trust and is one of seven Nightingale hospitals set up around the UK to improve NHS capacity during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Sir Simon called the construction of the hospital “an extraordinary act of teamwork”.

“We know that coronavirus is going to be with us for months if not years to come and we also know that there is going to be continuing pressure on services meaning that the capacity that the Nightingale hospitals represent will be useful to have not just over the coming weeks but potentially over months beyond that as well.

“For those who say, we’re not going to need to fill up every Nightingale bed, we say, of course, it makes sense to hope for the best but nevertheless to prepare for the worst.”

Mr Hancock said the hospital provided “another layer of armour” to protect the NHS.

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Doing their best to help combat the COVID-19 outbreak – the Festival, headed by Michael and Emily Eavis, donated cotton tote bags to hospitals in need, while also giving away thousands of litres of hand sanitiser, gloves and face masks meant for Glastonbury 2020 to frontline emergency services – including Avon and Somerset Police and NHS staff. The Festival also gave away several thousand ponchos which have been repurposed as anti-coronavirus PPE.

Glastonbury 2020 was set to be held at Worthy Farm in Pilton, Somerset – from Wednesday, June 24 through Sunday, June 28 – In a message from organisers, announcing Glastonbury 2020’s cancellation, Michael and Emily Eavis explained that cancelling this year’s event was their “only viable option” following “new government measures announced this week” to prevent the spread of the pandemic – saying: “We’re so sorry that this decision has been made. It was not through choice. But we look forward to welcoming you back to these fields next year and until then, we send our love and support to all of you.”

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