AN inspirational Inverclyde nurse has been given the royal seal of approval after receiving a top award.

Alison Bunce, who set up Compassionate Inverclyde to tackle loneliness and social isolation, has been awarded the prestigious title of Queen's Nurse.

Earlier this year, Alison was chosen to take part in a nine-month development programme run by the Queen’s Nursing Institute Scotland (QNIS). 

She was nominated by her employers at Ardgowan Hospice for her vision and leadership in creating Compassionate Inverclyde – which sees volunteers help people in the community.

Now that she has successfully completed the programme, Alison has been awarded the coveted Queen’s Nurse title.

She was presented with it at a special ceremony held on Thursday.  

Alison said: “I am delighted to be awarded the Queen’s Nurse title.

"Throughout the programme I have realised that the ability to be a great role model for others is an important part of being a Queen’s Nurse.

"I hope this shows to others that being a nurse can indirectly touch the lives of many people in a community.”

Linda McEnhill, who is the chief executive at Ardgowan Hospice, says Alison has made a massive impact in the area as she praised Alison's work.

She said: “We are delighted that Alison’s leadership has been recognised in this award.

“Compassionate Inverclyde has been the realisation of an aspiration of Ardgowan Hospice that has grown over many years.

"Bringing it to fruition has required vision, passion and immense leadership and these are qualities we associate with Alison, who we are very proud of.”

Alison was presented with their title by author Christie Watson at a special ceremony at Edinburgh’s Waldorf Astoria hotel.

During the ceremony, she received a Queen’s Nurse badge, a certificate signed by Her Majesty and a specifically commissioned Harris Tweed sash or tie.   

Alison said: “I was given the responsibility of creating a social movement to help transform attitudes and everyday practices around loneliness, social isolation, death and bereavement across Inverclyde.

“My work has been a catalyst which has helped ordinary people help ordinary people in times of crisis, illness and at the end of life.

"It aims to empower members of the community to recognise that we all have a responsibility to help each other.

“I believe the programme has been successful because I have ignited a spark in many individuals by tapping into our desire to be kind, helpful and compassionate."