Rayleigh man creates seaside mural at Southend Hospital

By Michael Cox in Health

A RAYLEIGH man has painted a seaside mural to welcome staff, patients and visitors to a ward at Southend Hospital.

Hospital volunteer and amateur artist Richard Ashton, 62, created the work over six months in the corridor to the day assessment unit.

The artwork depicts Southend in the 1960s and is styled on old-style holiday railway promotion posters.

Richard said: “It is a montage of different landmarks so is not geographically accurate. Staff used to tell me they loved coming in on Monday morning to see what had been added.”

The retired building surveyor approached the fundraising team with his idea for the mural after he was treated at hospital.

The grandfather of four was diagnosed with Addison’s disease, a malfunctioning of the adrenal gland.

Richard said: “I only found out afterwards that I was half a day away from dying and wanted to express my thanks for my life-saving treatment.”

Day assessment unit manager, Louisa Brown, said: “We have a lot of patients with memory impairment so are really pleased with what Richard has created. It has exceeded all our expectations. The mural is stunning and brings a smile to everyone’s faces.”

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