Dame Rosalind Paget Award (2004-2016)
The Dame Rosalind Paget Trust was set up in 1919 with a number of aims, including 'doing any such things as will in the opinion of the trustees improve the status, education and wellbeing of midwives'. Following the closure in 1997 of Rosalind Paget's publishing company, Nursing Notes Ltd, the remaining funds from the Trust were donated to the Iolanthe Midwifery Trust. The Trustees decided that this award of £500 annually should be given on an annual basis to the highest-scoring application that aims to progress practice though holistic care for woman and families. Since the decision to suspend this award, the remaining funds are invested to generate income for future awards for midwives and students.
Rosalind Paget was born in Liverpool in 1855. She qualified as a nurse in 1884 and as a midwife in 1885. She is remembered as a founding member of the Midwives' Institute (which became the Royal College of Midwives) and for her work to improve the status of midwives. She tirelessly petitioned Parliament for their registration; a goal which was achieved in 1902 with the first Midwives Act. Following this, the Central Midwives Board was set up and Rosalind served as a member from 1902 to 1924.
However, Rosalind was also instrumental in the regulation of some complementary therapies. Growing demand for massage in the 1880s led Rosalind to qualify as a masseuse at the London Hospital. Progressive members of the medical profession found it 'refreshing and invigorating for their patients'. However lack of regulation caused problems and in the 1890s the British Medical Journal warned its readers against the use of massage 'because of the number of unscrupulous persons involved in it'. Rosalind with colleagues set out to resolve this problem, and after careful preparation the Society of Trained Masseuses was launched. It later became the Chartered Society of Massage and Medical Gymnastics, then the Chartered Society of Physiotherapists.
It was said that Rosalind Paget had 'deep compassion, honesty and respect for others'. In her practice, whether as nurse, masseuse or midwife, she 'cared more for the comfort of the patients than for hospital routines and techniques … if anyone had a mental or a physical need, she had to make it better if she could'. She 'was concerned above all for the health of the mother … but the midwives themselves were equally dear to her heart'.
Previous winners of the Dame Rosalind Paget Award
Tamsin Robertson, studying at King's College London, undertook a Diploma in Anatomy, Physiology, Pathology and Body Massage at the London School of Massage, focusing on appropriate touch for women who are survivors of trauma.
Claire Nutt, Women and Children's Health, North Bristol Trust, for her project 'Massage for Maternity' – a course on infant massage with Wellmother, in Bristol, to enable offering personal massage sessions for both women in pregnancy and for midwives within the trust:
Emma Matthews, midwife at Wirral University Hospital, whose studies at Chester University focused on psychological trauma after childbirth.
Sheila Brown, community midwife at the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board for organising an ‘Evidence & Skills for Normal Labour & Birth’ course for 40 midwives.
Sheila Manning, midwife at the Balfour Hospital, Orkney
Lucy Jepson, midwife at the Sandwell & West Birmingham
Anna Brown, midwife at the University of Surrey
Lee-Anne Harvey, midwife at Ninewells Hospital, Dundee
Gill Perks, midwife at the Canterbury Birth Centre
Evelyn Davey, midwife at University College/EGA, London
Christine Manning, midwife at Belmore Holistic Training Centre
Katherine Allen, midwife at the LCTA
Christine Kalimurti, student at University of Wales
From 2009-2013 Iolanthe awarded the Tricia Anderson Award in memory of midwife Tricia Anderson who died in October 2007. The award was made possible by her many friends and colleagues who wish to remember her life and work.
The award was made to individuals or groups undertaking activities that reflected Tricia’s passion, innovative approach, scholarship and commitment to the wellbeing of mothers and midwives.
Tricia trained as a midwife in Bournemouth but this was a second career for her, as she had already completed a first degree in English and Music at the University of York. Tricia’s passion for literature and the arts, especially music, continued to inform and inspire her life and was a rich and integral part of her midwifery philosophy.
In the 1980s, before she ever trained as a midwife, Tricia was part of the original team that established MIDIRS (the Midwives Information and Resource Service) in Bristol. She went on to work as editor of the MIDIRS Midwifery Digest, 1995-1997, and later of The Practising Midwife.
Tricia also had a part-time role as a midwifery lecturer at Bournemouth University, where she was course leader for the MA in Advanced Midwifery Practice.
Tricia worked as an independent midwife and was a passionate advocate for women and their right to choose the birth they wanted. She was deeply interested in the politics of childbirth and committed to the role of the midwife as guardian of normal childbirth. Tricia was part-way through a PhD exploring the physiology and psychology of trust and birth when she was diagnosed with an incurable brainstem tumour in August 2005.
Through her writing she was able to share her passion for birth with midwives, students and women, both nationally and internationally. Tricia wrote extensively and in an inimitable style - engaging and accessible, but also academic and thoughtful. Tricia believed strongly in working alongside women: in 1996 she helped to establish a peer support group for breastfeeding women in Dorset, ‘Bosom Buddies’, which continues to flourish. She also led a wide range of workshops throughout the UK and Europe, from guidance on dealing with childbirth emergencies at home to weekends entitled ‘Sex, Birth and Rock and Roll’.
Tricia will be sadly missed and mourned by her very many friends, colleagues, students and all who met her. However, we celebrate the fact that she left a rich and lasting legacy and that she continues to inspire all who were lucky enough to know her. Saturday 14th June 2008 saw the Passionate Midwifery Conference held to celebrate her life. This proved to be an excellent day, with a large audience of midwives, student midwives and supporters of midwifery. There were many rich and varied presentations from a number of internationally renowned speakers, all of who paid tribute in their papers to Tricia and her original and creative ways of thinking.
The Conference was also highly successful as a fundraising day, with a total of £3371 being raised for the Tricia Anderson Award, which was announced at the conference by Professor Paul Lewis and Professor Billie Hunter (Iolanthe Midwifery Trust Chair at that time). Funds were primarily generated by conference registrations (all speakers spoke for free, facilities were provided free of charge by Bournemouth University and a delicious lunch was provided by all the participants, who brought along 'food to share').
Previous Winners of the Tricia Anderson Award
Over the five years of this award we saw a variety of projects that reflect Tricia's creativity and interests:
Sheila Brown, community midwife at the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board, received the award for organising an ‘Evidence & Skills for Normal Labour & Birth’ course for 40 midwives.
Elaine Uppal used the award to develop the use of art within the midwifery curriculum at the University of Salford.
Rachel Beckett established Birthbeats is a new, online resource for parents-to-be and health professionals to promote the benefits of using music during labour and birth.
Jane Cross used tactile, 3D images that attach to a plain, white T-shirt using Velcro to help women understand fetal positioning.
Alison Taylor, our first recipient, was funded to make video diaries of women's experiences of breastfeeding as an educational resource.