First Bangor University Physiotherapists reach the workplace

The first physiotherapy students to study at Bangor University have graduated and are about to begin working as physiotherapists with Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board (BCUHB) and elsewhere within the NHS.

Physiotherapy was one of the services identified as requiring workforce investment in North Wales and, in 2019, Bangor University was successful in securing the commission for training Physiotherapy students on the Post Graduate Diploma in Physiotherapy. This is an accelerated degree which compresses the training of this vital resource into two calendar years. 

This is an important milestone for the NHS workforce in the region. In addition, this has also meant that prospective students from the region do not have to travel to other training providers to learn and in doing so, remain and continue to be integral in their community. 

Throughout their training the students spend over a 1000 hours in local healthcare settings on work experience. 

Key to the success of this training has been the strong relationship between the University and BCUHB.  Cathy Wynne, service manager at BCUHB said:

“I am delighted to welcome the first graduates into the health board from the Physiotherapy course at Bangor University. It will be a pleasure to see these students transition into the next generation of physiotherapists. We have been waiting for this day for many years, working in partnership with the University to develop a training course locally for North West Wales.”

Professor Nichola Callow, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Teaching and Learning, Bangor University said:

“It has been wonderful to see this programme develop over the past two years, with the External Examiner being highly complementary about the programme, in particular with reference to the exemplary nature of the staff and level of student engagement. I wish all of the students the very best in their new careers, and look forward to the continued success of the programme for the benefit of our population’s health and wellbeing”

Dr Lynne Williams, Head of the School of Medical and Health Sciences said:

“We could not be more proud of this first cohort of physiotherapy students and look forward to following their careers in physiotherapy regionally and further afield. We are delighted that we were commissioned by Health Education and Improvement Wales to offer this new and exciting programme, and I would like to thank the academic team, led by Jonathan Flynn and our partners at BCUHB and other care providers for the ongoing collaboration to bring about success for the programme and provide the students with an excellent learning experience.”

Gareth Evans, Clinical Director, Therapy Services at BCUHB said:

“We are delighted to have worked in partnership with Bangor University to support a long held ambition to increase education for Allied Health Professions in North Wales. Bangor University are to be congratulated on bringing this ambition to life. The provision of physiotherapy training in North Wales is a significant step forward in improving the future workforce pipeline, allowing people to live and train in North Wales. Congratulations to all those new graduates as they embark on their careers, I wish them every success and look forward to meeting those that are joining Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board.”

Sam Wynne

Sam Wynne, of Llanbedr, who will be taking up a post at Betsi Cadwalader, West said:  

"I’m feeling privileged to have qualified as a physiotherapist at my home University and to have been taught by amazing lecturers. I’m looking forward to using the many skills I've been taught out in practice."

Dan Curran of Bangor who is taking up a post at Betsi Cadwaladr, West said:  
"I can't wait to start my career as a physiotherapist in the beautiful place I grew up! Thank you to Bangor University

and the course leads for giving me the opportunity."

Dan Curran

Llawen Rossell-Smith of Cricieth who is taking up a post at Betsi Cadwaladr, West said: 
“Bangor University and its staff made me realise my potential through the delivery of this course, I have grown massively in

Llawen Rossell-Smith

confidence thanks to the support of the lecturers and tutors. The University gave me the opportunity to focus on improving my Welsh and offered guidance with Welsh submissions of assignments so I could fulfil personal goals of completing these. I feel very proud to be from North Wales, and privileged having studied a postgraduate diploma here, and I feel immensely fortunate that I will be in employment in North Wales in my dream job.”


Publication date: 25 February 2022