Burnley school makes 340 visors for NHS staff and appeals for more material to continue sterling work

Burnley's Blessed Trinity Roman Catholic College Religious Studies teacher Laura Murray was delighted her school was able to help her NHS worker sister by making PPE - but they need more materials to continue the good work.

Blessed Trinity’s technology department have been making visors, under the watchful eye of curriculum leader for Design and Technology Adrian Lee, and technology teachers Zoe Atherton and Jess Horn.

The visors have been distributed to, among many others, Burnley General Hospital, Prestige Medical Group, Royal Oldham Hospital as well as local care homes and GP surgeries in East Lancashire.

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The school has made over 300 visors but they are close to running out of 0.5mm polypropylene and there is no stock online so they are hoping someone local can help them.

Former St Hildas RC High pupil Dr Jill Davies, wearing one of the visors made at Burnley's Blessed Trinity RC College. Dr Davies works for the GP Federation LPC in Blackburn with Darwen.

Mr Lee said: "I was inspired to make the visors by the strong community of Design and Technology teachers on social media platforms discussing how we could support our keyworkers.

"I eventually came across a template designed by an educational stockists called Kitronik for a face visor, which is a piece of PPE that is in short supply during the current pandemic.

"I researched into what equipment and material was needed - a laser cutter, 0.5mm polypropylene for the headband section and clear PVC for the visor itself - and then tried making a couple of prototypes.

"After resolving a few minor issues, staff in the Design and Technology department have been making approximately 70 visors a day. Assistant headteacher Mark Snowden and some pupils, Phoenix Deterville and Olivia Durkin, have also helped out.

RE teacher Laura Murray with her sister, Bethany Murray, who is a practice nurse at Peel House Medical Practice in Accrington.

"We have currently made 340 face visors. It has been a great team effort!

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"We have now used up most of the materials we had in stock and there is a shortage of them with a number of suppliers at the moment.

"We have recycled all of our A3 plastic portfolios to produce some of our visors. We have already had a generous donation from Rossendale Plastics in Haslingden. Any more donations from other local companies would be gratefully received.

"We are just glad we are able to support the heroic frontline keyworkers in our community.

Mr Lee and Miss Atherton with just some of the 340 visors they have made.
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"A lot of staff at Blessed Trinity have family and friends who are keyworkers - they do an absolutely incredible job.

"All of the thanks we have received should be directed to the people working in our hospitals, care homes, hospices and social care during these extraordinary times."

Miss Murray said it's vital that schools like Blessed Trinity continue producing vital equipment to support key workers.

"“My sister Bethany Murray is a practice nurse at Peel House Medical Practice in Accrington.

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“I told Bethany about the visors and if they would help the practice as part of the PPE they need.

“Bethany and the practice are very grateful for the donation and feel that it is great that communities are coming together.

“It felt great to be able to give my sister something back while working for the NHS and I felt so proud of my amazing school and colleagues who have created these to help.”

Miss Atherton said: “These masks are being made in many DT departments across the country and it’s great to see so many being produced.

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“It’s really nice to be involved and feel like you are contributing something to help all those working on the frontline.

“Some of the masks have gone to people I know working in care homes, plus members of staff’s family who work in GP practices or hospitals so it makes it even more personal.

“I never expected recognition but it’s lovely to see how much it means to people.”

One of the recipients is former St Hilda’s pupil Dr Jill Davies. She works for the GP Federation LPC in Blackburn with Darwen.

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“The visors will be distributed between GP surgeries in East Lancs and Blackburn with Darwen, community nursing teams, hospices and social care.

“They will make a huge difference as it enables us to see our patients safely.”

If anyone can help Blessed Trinity with materials please contact: [email protected]