Southmead Hospital Charity is urging NHS staff and supporters in Bristol to ‘raise a cuppa’ and celebrate the NHS birthday on Friday 5 July for the NHS Big Tea.

Thousands of tea parties are set to take place across the country as the nation comes together to mark the NHS birthday and raise money for NHS charities.

Now Southmead Hospital Charity is calling on everyone who loves the NHS to get behind the campaign and host their own tea party with friends, family and colleagues – at work, at school, at home or in your community.

Southmead Hospital Charity fund innovative and supportive projects that transform local NHS services; funding pioneering research and equipment as well as improvements to our hospitals’ buildings and spaces.

The charity also funds projects which support patients through their hospital journeys as well as the development and support of staff to help them deliver exceptional healthcare.

To celebrate the launch of this year’s NHS Big Tea campaign, television presenter Dr Ranj was joined by his Strictly Come Dancing co-star Charles Venn and some of his former St George’s colleagues on the hospital’s helipad in Tooting, south west London, for a special tea party event.

Dr Ranj Singh said: “The NHS has been a huge part of my life – as it has for millions of people across the country. Our fantastic health service is the envy of the world and the NHS staff who provide such outstanding care for patients every day are extraordinary people.

“I’m delighted to raise a cuppa to celebrate the launch of the NHS Big Tea, which is the perfect opportunity for everyone who loves our NHS to come together and say thank you.

“By hosting a tea party, you can raise money for NHS charities and show your support for their incredible work.”

Charles Venn, who plays nurse Jacob Masters in Casualty, said: “The NHS is a national treasure for a reason – it is there for us all in our time of need, no matter what.

“That’s why I want you all to join together on 5 July and show the NHS just how much we love it, by raising a cuppa in support of NHS charities across the country. Let’s celebrate the amazing work they do day in and day out to help people and their families.”

The NHS Big Tea is an opportunity for people up and down the country to come together and toast the NHS. Everyone is encouraged to host their own tea party, invite their friends, family and colleagues, and support the vital work of NHS charities.

The campaign is being led by NHS Charities Together, which is the national association for NHS charities.

Elizabeth Bond, head of fundraising, Southmead Hospital Charity, said: “We want to make healthcare better for our patients today and in the future by funding innovative, nurturing and supportive projects that transform local NHS services.  .

“What better way to celebrate a cherished institution like the NHS than with another well-loved tradition – the cup of tea!

“By holding a Big Tea party and raising money for a hospital department that is close to your heart, you’ll be helping us to ensure that local NHS health services can provide better healthcare for tomorrow’s generation.”

Download your Big Tea Fundraising pack.