Esther Kirby visits No. 10

“On Monday 6th October I attended a reception hosted by the Prime Minister for nurses other health care professionals and carers. Once through the security the walk to the door of No 10 was familiar from seeing this on TV with ministers and guests walking past the waiting press. The big black door is opened and we were warmly welcomed to No 10 and then promptly told to leave mobile devices before proceeding.

The reception was held upstairs so walked up the famous staircase with all the photographs of previous PM’s into a reception room where drinks were served. There was about 75 guests from NHS, voluntary sector, primary care education with all areas of health represented. We were served canapés whilst the Prime Minister, Jeremy Hunt mingled and spoke to individuals and groups, with them both making a speech thanking us all for our contribution to the NHS and health services in general.

One of the reception rooms led to the cabinet office - which we wandered into by accident! Another reception room was the sitting room where the PM receives guests and heads of state.

The décor was very tasteful but it was grand as you would expect- it’s a shame I can’t share this with you (due to having our mobile phones confiscated and with us not being allowed to take photographs).

There were several of us from the national District nurse working group so I knew some faces, but it was great to meet lots of new people who were representing their organisations and being acknowledged for the work they have contributed to Chief Nursing Officers 6C’s.

It was a great experience, one I won’t forget and certainly one of the highlights of my career!”