Thirteen nurses reunited 50 years after training together at Oldchurch Hospital.

Nurses who began their training together in 1969 at the former Oldchurch Hospital in Romford, which was part of Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust, reunited on Friday.

Two of the group, Margo McFarlane and Diane Webber, are still nurses employed with the trust 50 years after their training.

The first reunion in decades was organised by Ms Webber alongside Jenny Andrews who worked at the trust for six years after completing her training and moving out of the area.

The nurses gathered for a celebratory lunch at the Marygreen Manor Hotel in Brentwood.

Ms Webber, of Petits Lane, Romford, said: "I love caring for people. I also love the staff, that’s why I’ve stayed at the same Trust for so long. It’s our job to support each other.

"I always wanted to be a nurse. A lot has changed over the years, especially the equipment, but continuing to learn new things is good for the brain."

She has two sons, one of whom followed her into nursing after training at the same trust and is now a matron at Southend Hospital.

Ms McFarlane who celebrated her 70th birthday the day before the reunion, said: "I always wanted to be a nurse too, I liked the uniform! It’s been a great job. It’s very different now, it’s busier and the patients are more acutely ill, however the essence of nursing, caring for people and putting our patients first, hasn’t changed.

"It’s been amazing catching up – I haven’t seen some of them in years and didn’t even recognise them."