A Vale hospital worker has been keeping 'smiles on faces' after she decided to keep a seasonal tree in the office.

Mel Occhiochiuso, assistant business support manager, decided that the Christmas tree in the office at the Vale of Leven Hospital was just too good to take down – and it is now being re-decorated regularly to mark special occasions.

In February, it became a Valentine’s tree and it is now currently the Easter tree.

The 39-year-old said: “In December, because of the early nights, we’d often have the tree lit up in the office without other lights on as it created a nice ambience at that time of the day.

“In January we still had it up, but we thought, it creates a nice atmosphere so why lose it?

“People were obviously thinking about the superstition of having to take trees down before a certain date, so I thought if we make it a seasonal tree we’ll be okay.

“It’s a great talking point and it’s certainly making people smile.”

Melanie McColgan, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde’s Clyde sector director, added: “Obviously some thought it a bit strange at first, but people can’t miss it now - and everyone who does see it seems quite taken by it.

“Sometimes it’s these little things that make the working day just that bit more enjoyable and it’s great that our staff here at the Vale make that extra effort to create a better day-to-day atmosphere for themselves and patients alike.

“Our staff putting that extra bit of thought into how they do things underlines the fact that the Vale of Leven is a valuable part of the local community.”

Mel, who has been with the NHS for over a decade and also works in the Specialist Children’s Services team based at the Vale, added: “We’ve done Valentines and now it’s decorated for Easter – I’m really going to have to up my game for summer but I’ve already got some ideas about what I’ll do!”