Margot Whittaker, director of nursing and compliance, at Devon’s Southern Healthcare has been awarded the prestigious title of Queen’s Nurse (QN) by The Queen’s Nursing Institute (QNI).

Southern Healthcare is an independent company running four highly rated and award-winning nursing homes in Dawlish, Exeter, Plymouth and Seaton.

The Queen’s Nursing title indicates a huge commitment to high standards of resident care, learning and leadership.

Nurses who hold the award participate in developmental workshops, bursaries, networking opportunities, and share a strong professional identity.

Dr Crystal Oldman CBE, chief executive of the QNI, said: ‘On behalf of the QNI I would like to congratulate Margot and welcome her as a Queen’s Nurse.

‘Queen’s Nurses serve as leaders and role models in community nursing, delivering high quality health care across the country.

‘The application and assessment process to become a Queen’s Nurse is rigorous and requires clear commitment to improving care for residents, their families and carers.

‘We look forward to working with Margot and all other new Queen’s Nurses who have received the award.’

Margot, who was presented with her award at a ceremony in London, said: ‘It was a very inspiring and most enjoyable day and a huge recognition for community nursing and in my case, social care.

‘It also comes with clear commitment and responsibility.’

Established in 2001, Southern Healthcare is run by Geoffrey Cox and Margot Whittaker. The couple are highly respected in social care and are advocates for radical change in the sector, locally and nationally.