Doctor couple retire from Aylsham Surgery

A long-standing doctor couple who tended to generations of Norfolk families have retired from their posts as GPs.

Michael and Frances Price worked for more than 25 years at Aylsham Surgery and its sister premises in Reepham and got to know whole families during their tenure at the busy practice.

The couple, who worked as junior doctors in Gloucester, split themselves between the two sites with Mr Price working in Reepham and Mrs Price in Aylsham, but decided to step down from their positions as they were reaching retirement age and faced more changes to the health service.

They were given a fond farewell from both premises earlier this month and said they will miss seeing their patients, teaching medical students and working with 'fantastic colleagues'.

Mr Price, 59, added: 'We both looked after people who we knew as babies when we first arrived and they have had their own family now. It's a privilege to have that link and relationship with patients.'

The pair came to Norfolk after Mr Price got a job at the West Norwich Hospital - now Norwich Community Hospital - and after marrying, went into general practice. They then spent three years working in a Methodist missionary hospital in Sierra Leone.

They returned to Norfolk in 1986 and through a colleague they had worked with in Africa, they managed to land jobs at the Aylsham Surgery and moved from their home outside Norwich to Booton, near Reepham.

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'We moved because in those days we had to do all our on call nights and weekends and had to live in the practice area,' Mr Price added. 'For the first 15 years we did all the out of hours calls, which was very difficult because one night it would be me and the next it would be Frances and we had three small children.'

The couple also taught dozens of medical students; Mr Price took on young doctors studying to become GPs while Mrs Price, 57, taught medical students from the University of East Anglia.

Over the years they have seen many changes to their work and several re-organisations of the health service, but Mr Price maintained the 'main part' of the job of 'looking after the patients and being their advocate' had remained the same.

The pair are now looking forward to spending more time concentrating on their hobbies, including playing music and gardening, and attending family events.

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