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Donna Ockenden Limited

Professional / staff testimonials

Really well done for championing safer maternity care – you are inspiring. Doing what is right rather that what is easy is challenging, especially where politics becomes involved

Consultant Obstetrician, December 2021

Thanks again for taking part in our maternity event on Wednesday! It was really well executed from start to finish and answered a great range of questions with brilliant insights from all of the speakers.

Just a quick note to say thank you so much for being on the panel. It was a brilliant session that covered all of the bases it needed to in the short space of time. It was thoroughly informative and engaging from start to finish.

Hi Donna, I wanted to write and thank you so much for your input on the webinar this evening. It was so nice and refreshing to hear a true reflection of the unbearable challenges in maternity services currently. I am praying your voice is and continues to be heard loud and clear to get us to a place we are so desperately in need of. I am so emotional listening to you, I hope there is a change quick enough to keep midwives and myself in a profession we/I love so much. Thank you!

Ms W, August 2021

Donna Ockenden it is so special and proud to know you and all you have achieved for all those families ?? you are inspirational xx 

Registered Nurse PE, May 2021

‘What you’re doing is nothing short of phenomenal – a massive undertaking for you and the team which is all executed so brilliantly.

 You are so supportive and appreciative of the administrative and clinical teams – I just wanted to say I hope someone’s telling you how proud you should be of all you’re doing for the families involved and for the future of maternity care ?’

Charity CEO, April 2021

‘Keep doing what you’re doing. Speaking truth to power is never easy, Your first report was a harrowing and hard read but I greatly respect you for the honesty and humanity you wove into the document. It oozed compassion and I believe that’s exactly what was needed. Take good care, keep well and certainly keep up the excellent work. ‘

NHS Colleague 2021

‘I felt compelled to write. I am the recently appointed lay chair of the Maternity Voices Partnership for XXXXX. There is, rightly so, a renewed focus on listening to service user voices following the publication of your report into maternity services. I felt both saddened and inspired by reading your publication and I feel that we have much to learn, and act on, from it.’ 

MVP Chair

‘I have been thinking of you during this …enquiry. You have done an amazing job and will truly bring much needed action to improve maternity care to help women at long last. Take care..’ 

Midwife G, former NHS Colleague (Twitter, direct message)

‘I just wanted to touch base after today’s report. I know it must have been harrowing and deeply distressing. I think you’ve done brilliantly and I hope your recommendations are followed. Thank you for all you do for mothers and babies.’

GS, Trustee of Charity, Twitter 

‘I hope you’re keeping well. I can’t believe just how much work you must have put into this review and how difficult it must have been, but I hope you’re proud of it and the impact it has [and] the potential for women and their babies for generations to come. Seriously well done.’

CEO in the NHS February 2021, Twitter

‘Your important report is shaping our national and local priorities and has steeled our determination to deliver the very best care for women and babies across the country.’

CEO, NHS March 2021

‘I have nothing but admiration for the Maternity Review which has already achieved so much. It was very gratifying to see such a prompt response from Trusts around the country to Donna’s report just before Christmas. Not before time the NHS is waking up to the crucial role that maternity services play in the life of the nation.’

Consultant in O and G NHS , March 2021

‘Dear Donna,

 I am writing on behalf of members, past and present, of the Bereavement Support Team at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust to express our deepest admiration for your well-received “Ockenden Report”.  

To have taken on that piece of work must have been very challenging indeed; we noted your ready admission of the pain you experienced personally in that necessary task of listening to the women and their families who had suffered so greatly.

We all recall with great thanks your years at Portsmouth: the encouragement you gave … in exploring the possibilities of establishing a thorough and ambitious training programme. Your enthusiastic backing, plus the very necessary funding, made so much possible – including making available …[external]  expertise. The Training Courses eventually grew to include nurses from Gynae, NICU and Ancillary staff working in all areas. There was even a slot in the Divisional Induction Programme for Junior Doctors, which was well-received. We wish you every success in taking your work forward – knowing that you are absolutely the right person for such an important work not only in Shrewsbury but throughout England. You have our hearts with you!’

NHS Chaplain

‘Hi Donna, I just wanted to say a huge thank you for the excellent report. Heartbreaking though it is, I think we will finally see real action taken as a result of the work you and your team are doing. And that gives me hope for the future – a good place to end this challenging year. Warmest wishes’

Midwife Colleague NHS

‘Dear Donna, 
With the news of the Interim Maternity Report at SaTH last week I wanted to drop you a line. I know it has been an enormous job and one which I understand became larger and larger over time. But I am also aware of what an incredibly emotional task it must have been for you, listening to families concerns, and moreover concerns which they felt had not been listened to previously.  I wanted you know that I have often thought of you.

Former Midwife colleague, London December 2020

‘Stellar input to the select committee Donna – your commitment to the families shines though so clearly’

CEO, Charity December 2020

‘Dear Donna,
You have done well with Shrewsbury and Telford Maternity investigation. …..So many families have suffered. Congratulations on doing so much to expose this all.’

Retired Consultant colleague, London January 2021

‘Donna, I’m sure you’ve heard this from very many people – but I just wanted to thank you for the report from you and your team. It’s honest and real. It also, for the very first time, puts the voices of women and families centre stage. They’ve been disregarded for so long, and those individual stories are extraordinarily powerful…. at least on maternity, that culture of denial has been broken, and you’ve done that. Congratulations.

Local resident, Shropshire

‘Hi Donna,

 I just wanted to drop you a personal note to congratulate you on the work you and the team have done on publication of the emerging findings.  

 There was, as you know a great deal of media coverage yesterday.  I watched the Channel 4 news coverage, which was extensive, with my family and we were all moved by the piece.  

 The coverage yesterday brought home to me what a difficult and important job you are doing.’

Colleague, legal services December 2020

‘Dear Donna,

I just wanted to personally write to you and say thank you for all of your dedication and hard work in undertaking the Ockenden review. You are a role model for our profession and I sincerely hope there will be lasting changes following your review.

I can only imagine how sad and difficult it has been to hear from the bereaved families time and time again. So I wanted to let you know that some of us really are trying and are committed to high quality care and patient safety.

Thank you again and all the best with the rest of the review.’

Consultant Midwife, London January 2021

‘Dear Donna

Well done with the release of the report which is shocking to read, but will help the families I believe. I was horrified by the section on lack of communication skills and disappointed by the poor clinical practice during my watch. As you say implementation is the challenge, maybe some of the recommendations need to be bound up in legal requirements, with very tight accountability.

Good move to have a non exec on the board with responsibility for women and children.

I believe that your work invites much self analysis by both the RCOG and RCM with other professional groups, but such analysis must involve listening to women who use the service for the whole of NHS including Scotland!

Retired NHS consultant December 2021

‘Dear Donna

It gave me great pleasure to watch the news tonight and see you leading the review at Shrewsbury.

I know your professionalism and thoroughness from our dealings locally. You are well placed to be conducting such an important review.’ – Dr H, GP colleague December 2021

‘Today has been momentous for everyone but especially you as the Chair of the review. I feel immensely proud to be a part of the team and hope to make a difference. Thank you once again for the opportunity!’

Midwife and team member – The Maternity review December 2021

‘Dear Donna

I have today read your Report online and wanted to say to you personally that I hope it will eventually prove to be a milestone in the way Maternity Services are managed in the UK.

Please pass on my congratulations to the team; they should be proud that what they are doing will make a real difference.’  – Former colleague

‘Just to say I have been thinking of you during this…enquiry. You have done an amazing job and will truly bring much needed action to improve maternity care to help women at long last, Take care.’

Midwife G, NHS January 2021

‘Hello Donna

I just wanted to say well done.  Your report is so clear and well considered. 

I think and hope it will make a significant difference and improve standards for future pregnancies and births and in time restore trust in the hospitals in our community.

With much respect for your achievement in leading your team in an investigation that will almost certainly save lives.’

Colleague, legal services December 2020

‘Dear Donna,

I watched you on zoom this morning, outlining your very clear and robust interim report for SaTH. I felt very emotional because of the loss of my 3 babies (in terrible circumstances), and also frustrated that decades later so much has to be improved.

Thank you for everything you do Donna – you have given hope to many. Particularly those poor parents and families.’

CEO, Charity

Family Testimonials

‘Thank you so much for talking to us yesterday. It was so lovely to meet with you. We both said after the meeting what a kind and compassionate woman you are. So thank you so very much.’

Ms L, October 2021

‘Thank you so so much for your help, this means more than I can put into words,

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank you all again for all the work you have done, for me and my baby boy! Having a voice at long last is astonishing and me and my family are eternally grateful

Ms B, June 2021

“Huge congratulations on all your and your teams work over the past many months.

Mrs B March 2021

“I’m so sorry not to have written before now, to thank you and your Team for all that you have been doing for everyone affected by the issues with the Shrewsbury and Telford Maternity Services. Reading the Report, watching your Zoom sessions where you helped to keep us all informed with what was happening, watching the Select Committee, you responding to our questions etc. – it has all been amazing.  Thank you, thank you, and thank you.  The amount of work and emotional energy that has gone into all of this by you and your Team so far is simply incredible. Your findings were horrifying.  But the recommendations from your findings are mind-blowing, and I am sure will have shaken the Trust to the core, to read all in one document about what has happened and to see what they need to do.  Hopefully stopping things like this happening to anyone else, let alone so many people.

Ms B February 2021

“You provided a report in this case in 2017. I wanted to let you know that the case settled via mediation this month. 

I thought you would be interested to know that the claimant has agreed to work with NHS Resolution to raise awareness with the clinicians at the trust in relation to what happened in this case, in particular the failings in this case to involve the parents in the SUI, and how they were treated afterwards which compounded their distress. 

Many thanks for your assistance in this case and in helping us reach a settlement. “

Victoria Beel 
Senior Associate 
Slater and Gordon 

“Thank you for all your doing, if this prevents other mothers going through what I saw my daughter going through ….then it will all be worth it .Thank you from the bottom of my heart.  Happy Christmas to you and yours.”

Mrs S


I just want to say how amazed I am at how Donna and your team are fighting for all the cases from the Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital Trust.  The local actions for learning and plan of actions for improvement sound fantastic.

I thank Kate and Pippa and others who never gave up fighting for justice.

With kindest regards.”

Mrs M 

“I would like to thank you all for the work you have done so far in the review and for the care and compassion shown.”

Ms W 

“Dear Donna
I hope all is well with you. 
Congratulations on the Report that you launched today. 
Your report will give a voice to each baby and their parents. 
I look forward to hearing from you soon. 
Kind regards and thanks.”

Mrs M 

“Hello Donna Ockenden and team

May I thank you for your help and support to so many traumatised people who have now had their moment to express profound loss and agony.

I found it so upsetting myself after all the years of blaming myself. Thank you all from the depths of my soul. 

With kindest regards.”

Mrs D

“Good evening

We watched Donna today and the statement in the House of Commons and found it helpful to a point. Like many other families we want to be assured that the lessons are being learnt by the Trust and the changes will be embedded especially around the culture within the Service.”

Mrs T


Thank you so much for the great deal of care you have taken over the report and for treating us families with care and respect. I really appreciated you letting us know details of the report before it was published.”

Miss P 

“Dear Donna,

Much appreciated.

My best wishes and many thanks for all you do.”

Mr L, Father of A

“Dear Donna,

Thank you very much for keeping us all informed, and for all the sterling work you and your team have done, and are still doing.

Thank you again for all you have done.  If they take it all on board, it should save a great many parents a great deal of grief and sorrow.  Let us hope they do.

With very best wishes to you.”

Mrs B 

“Good morning Donna

Firstly may I say..That you absolutely Rock !! 

The hard work you and your team are doing is making a huge huge difference.

 I never had before now this feeling of calm and reassurance that the Trust were listening and taking note..but now I feel everyone is taking note and listening to you and your findings.  Thank you.”

Mrs P

“Thank you so much Donna for dealing with all of this so well.

Please god let these stories shape a better service to all mums to be in the future.

Being part of the review has felt so powerful and helps in part  to heal such awful memories. 

Kind Regards”

Mrs F

‘Thank you for doing all this and keeping us updated, it’s much appreciated.

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and stay safe.

Kind regards”

Mrs M

“Dear Donna

Firstly, thank you. We watched on Friday, I’ve managed to read your report from start to finish without breaking down (Which I couldn’t have done 2 years ago).  We also watched the parliament TV you did yesterday.

It finally feels like we are getting somewhere. Bless you”

Mrs S 

“Good Morning,

I just wanted to say a thank you for all the work you have done so far and all that you have yet to do to give us a voice. I have to admit that after the zoom call and reading the report last week, it bought back so many feelings and emotions.”

Mrs C

“Good morning, 

I have just listened into the webinar this morning and firstly wanted to say how grateful we are for the efforts your team are making on our behalf, working so hard to bring about change at the maternity services in Shrewsbury and Telford. I appreciate too that the number of cases being considered makes a personal response to each question raised very difficult. 

Many thanks again for all you are doing.”

Mrs W

“I have just listened to your zoom webinar, thank you for providing me with opportunity to listen to the preliminary findings ahead of publication of your report. Thank you also so much for the tremendous work that you and your team have been doing. 

Again, thank you sincerely for all that you are doing.”

Mrs R 

“Hi Donna and the team, 

I just wanted to thank you from the bottom of my heart for all the hard work that you and your team have put into the investigation/ review so far and for such a sincere first report today. 

Donna you are an amazing speaker and are so compassionate and sincere. We are so grateful for all the measures that are due to be implemented in the future to support other families. THANK YOU”

Mrs S

“Dear Ms Ockenden,

I would like to say thank you to both you and your team for such a thorough investigation and review.”

Mrs U

“Dear Donna, 

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for everything you have done for us, for Kate and for all the families”

Mr and Mrs SD

“To Donna & all the team, 

Thank you for listening and giving Pippa a voice. Your work will make a huge difference to Maternity Safety across the country”

Mr & Mrs G 

Louise Barnett, Chief Executive at The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust, said: “I would like to thank Donna Ockenden for this report but more importantly the families for coming forward.  

“As the Chief Executive now and on behalf of the whole Trust, I want to say how very sorry we are for the pain and distress that has been caused to mothers and their families due to poor maternity care at our Trust. 

“We commit to implementing all of the actions in this report and I can assure the women and families who use our service that if they raise any concerns about their care they will be listened to and action will be taken.”

“If you are pregnant and have any questions about your current care, please contact your midwife.”

Minister for Patient Safety and Maternity Nadine Dorries MP said: “My heartfelt sympathies are with every family who has been affected by the shocking failings in Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust’s maternity services.

“I would like to thank Donna Ockenden and her team for their hard work in producing this first report and making these vital recommendations so lessons can be learnt as soon as possible.  

“I expect the Trust to act upon the recommendations immediately, and for the wider maternity service right across the country to consider important actions they can take to improve safety for mothers, babies and families.

“This Government is utterly committed to patient safety, eradicating avoidable harms and making the NHS the safest place in the world to give birth. We will work closely with NHS England and Improvement, as well as Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust to consider next steps.”

“You have been an inspiration to work with and what I have learnt most from you is to always put the patients and family first….. with people like you the quality of care will improve and I will watch with great hope and anticipation. Good luck..”

Dr F,
Former NHS colleague  
September 2020

“Dear Donna 

It was lovely to finally meet you! Heartfelt thanks from us both for today. Your empathy and understanding really helped us. 

Best wishes”

Mr and Mrs A,
September 2020

“We appreciate all you are doing here for us as your work load is no doubt immense.

It was lovely to meet you on Monday

Thanks again for all you are doing”

Mr E,
September 2020

“Thank you for listening and understanding. It is very much appreciated- artwork courtesy of my 4 year old.”

Ms W,
May 2020

“It’s people like you Donna – that make the world a better place”

J S, 
February 2020

“Dear Donna, I hope that you have enjoyed your visit to Newham the day before and thank you for taking time to talk to me. The colleagues and I were very impressed by your words of encouragement and inspiration.”

Midwife N,
January 2020

“As always, thank you so much for all your help, patience, support and kind words.”

Mrs W

“It’s such a difficult thing to go through, even all this time on for me. I’m so thankful to you all for everything that you are doing.”

Mrs B

“I thank you again for taking the time out to help me and my family, to bring the full scale of events to account and it means a great deal that you are there for us.”

Mrs S

“The work you do is so encouraging and inspirational, I hope you get all the support you need to keep up this important work.”

S K, 
January 2020

“As always, thank you so much for all your help, patience, support and kind words.”

Mrs W

“I thank you again for taking the time out to help me and my family, to bring the full scale of events to account and it means a great deal that you are there for us.”

Mrs S

“Keep up the excellent work.”

Mrs M