Wakefield artist, Toni Thornton, has felt a huge amount of gratitude for our National Health Service during these last 12 months, and has wondered how, in the midst of all of the uncertainty, can she say thank you to the NHS.

Toni Thornton said: “2020 has been so incredibly difficult for so many and I can only imagine the challenges that those working within the hospital are having to face during these unknown times.”

The Yorkshire abstract artists signature style has gained her celebrity clients such as Perrie Edwards and Alex Oxlade-Chamberline, plus an upcoming television appearance on the new season of Channel 4’s George Clarke’s Project Home. That being said, the busy Yorkshire artist felt a need to give back to her local NHS and show her gratitude in her own signature way: “Clapping for our carers was so important and hopefully showed how much we care for our beloved NHS, but by creating this piece of artwork I will of hopefully brightened up the staff and the patients day(s) and given them all a reminder of how thankful we are today, tomorrow and always.”

Toni knows first-hand how challenging it has been for families and staff during the pandemic; “During the pandemic, and for some time before, my late grandmother was in the Pinderfields acute heart assessment unit, and in-and-out of the district hospitals, for several months. Unfortunately, these months clashed with Covid-19 restrictions, which meant as a family we were unable to be with her. Being in that situation was incredibly hard, but what struck me and gave me and my family some peace of mind was knowing she was being cared for so well by all of the nurses, doctors and community staff.”

Toni wanted to show her gratitude to Pinderfields and David Melia, Chief Nurse for The Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust was incredibly touched by the offer; “I am extremely grateful to Toni for this beautiful piece of art. Her recognition and acknowledgment of the work carried out by all staff in the NHS during the pandemic really does mean a lot. We will make sure that the art work will be displayed in a place that can be enjoyed by our staff and patients.”

The large roses on the stunning canvas are a symbolism of heaven and harmony in the world, and often in literature the rose stands for beauty and love. Toni said, “The artwork is a representation of the harmony the NHS have brought to the patients and their families. The rose has many hidden meanings, but in this particular painting the flowers are a representation of the elegant rose that was my grandmother, Jean Fell, and many others loved ones who are no longer with us.”

“I dedicate this artwork to the people that were there for my own grandma and everyone else’s loved ones during these hard times – thank you Pinderfields and all of the NHS workers.”