A MENTAL health nurse from Chelmsford was one of only five in the country to be recognised by a national charity for outstanding service.

Julia Gibson-Cranch was presented with the Queen’s Nursing Institute (QNI)’s Queen Mother’s Award for Outstanding Service at a ceremony at the Royal Garden Hotel in London in recognition of her dedication to caring for young people and their families.

Although the event was attended by 220 nurses and their guests last month, only five in the whole country were considered to have delivered the outstanding service fitting of the award and presented with a certificate signed by the Queen, the patron of the charity.

Julia said she was shocked to hear she had been chosen for the award but added she accepted it with humility.

She said: “I had an email saying that I had won and I didn’t quite believe it - I was really quite surprised.

“I do feel very proud to get the award but, at the same time, I know I’m only one of millions of nurses who do an outstanding job every day.”

Julia has worked with children suffering from complex emotional difficulties and their families for 24 years and joined Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust’s child and adolescent mental health service in Hoddesdon earlier this year.

The Trust specialises in mental health and provides specialised learning disability services across Hertfordshire, as well as north Essex and Norfolk, caring for more than 30,000 people.

“I enjoy giving support to children and their families,” Julia said.

“Often I see people who have had difficulties for a long time and I think it’s vital to work with the child and parents together to work through the difficulties.