Westfield Health honours Sheffield’s real heroes as it turns 100

To mark its 100th anniversary, Westfield Health honoured the ‘real heroes’ of Sheffield for being part of its remarkable journey for the past century.

By Rahmah Ghazali
Monday, 7th October 2019, 7:25 pm
Full-house attendance at Westfield Health's 100th anniversary celebration at Royal Victoria Crowne Plaza hotel.
Full-house attendance at Westfield Health's 100th anniversary celebration at Royal Victoria Crowne Plaza hotel.

About 200 people turned up for an afternoon tea and entertainment in a full-house event held at Crowne Plaza Royal Victoria hotel in the city centre yesterday.

Westfield Health chairman Graham Moore said the celebration was to thank those who have contributed to their success since the company’s inception.

The city’s health insurance company, founded on July 3, 1919, was first known as Sheffield Consultative and Advisory Hospitals Council, or simply known as The Sheffield Hospitals Council.

Participants dancing Westfield Health's 100th anniversary celebration

Mr Moore said: “Westfield Health has been going for 100 years and our growth has been largely attributed to the unbelievable support we have had from the local community and the people who have been on the journey with us.

“We felt as part of the centenary this year, we celebrate with the people who have reached the age of 100 and thank them for not only what they have contributed to Westfield, but for what they have contributed to the city.”

He said among the special guests at the event were those who had fought in World War II and helped rebuild the country.

“These are the true heroes of Sheffield and we are delighted to honour them today,” Mr Moore said.

Sheffield's 'oldest' Normandy hero, Cyril Elliott took part in Westfield Health 100th anniversary celebration

Sheffield Lord Mayor Tony Downing, who was also present, said the fantastic turn-out showed the high regard Westfield Health was held in by people.

“When it first started in 1919, it was just really a substitute for hospital benefit and now you can see the difference because it is supported by a lot of people across the city,” he said.

Independent community services consultant Kathy Markwick, who runs SuperJam Tea Party events aimed at tackling loneliness among the elderly, said the event had been a success.

“I’m very pleased with the turn-out today as we appeal to the older people in Sheffield. We’d like to think that this might kickstart other events across the city and South Yorkshire just to encourage people, especially the elderly, to go out,” she said.

Participants dancing Westfield Health's 100th anniversary celebration

And what made the event more special was when Ernest Crookes from Sheffield chose to celebrate his 101st birthday with Westfield Health and his family.

He is believed to have been the oldest guest at the event.

“I like coming here…this is not too bad,” said the great-grandfather-of-two, smiling.

His daughter Wendy Mellor, 76 said her father has always been active and enjoys a pint of beer occasionally.

“He enjoys doing puzzles, watching TV and feeds himself very well, too.”

Sheffield’s ‘oldest’ Normandy hero Cyril Elliott, of Wincobank, who turned 99 last May, also did not miss out on the fun.

“Someone told me, whatever you do in life, take everything in moderation and it will do no harm,” he said, when asked on his secret to longevity.

Cyril was a member of the Royal Army Service Crops and provided bridges needed to liberate Europe. He did not land on D-Day itself, June 6, 1944, but about a week later.