HAVING once again spent a couple of nights in Blackburn Royal Infirmary, having a minor operation, I would like to state that, from the big man himself to the young lass cleaning the toilets, the standards were absolutely top class.

However, it is the little things that mean the most to us patients, especially the things that usually go unmentioned. For example, at about 6pm. I was informed that I had to have nothing to eat or drink after midnight, prior to my operation the following day. At around 11.50pm a cup of tea and two digestive biscuits arrived by my bedside.

On the following night at about 3am an elderly patient was quietly sobbing when a comforting arm was wrapped around him and soothing words of reassurance and hope were whispered to him until he dropped off to sleep. He woke up again about 7am and started to sing -- (the magic had worked).

The thing that impressed me most of all, however, on my hospital visit, is that anyone who goes banging on about race, culture and religion, should walk into a hospital and see what real human beings look like. An absolute mix of race, culture and beliefs, all working together for one purpose -- other people!

GORDON SHAW, Rhyl Avenue, Blackburn.