Goodwood costume curator uses skills to make headbands for St Richard’s Hospital workers

Goodwood’s theatrics and costume curator has been putting her design skills to good use since the lockdown was introduced.

Sue O'Donoghue in the wardrobe department at Goodwood
Sue O'Donoghue in the wardrobe department at Goodwood

Sue O’Donoghue, who found herself with time on her hands after she was furloughed, has made more than 110 special headbands for NHS staff forced to wear protective masks for work all day.

She said she came across the idea online in costume and theatre forums on social media.

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“Nurses are getting very sore behind the ears because of the PPE,” she said.

The headbands help take pressure off when wearing a mask

“The elastic behind the ears can get really painful, to the point that they actually bleed.”

The headbands have big buttons sewn on either side which the masks can be hooked onto, taking the pressure off the ears.

Sue said a friend of hers, who is a nurse at St Richards, had got in touch asking whether she could help make any, and said she had received good feedback so far.

“I know they are finding it useful,” she said.

Sue O'Donoghue in the wardrobe department at Goodwood

Goodwood has given Sue special permission to go onto the premises and use the department, where her sewing machine is based, as a base to produce the masks.

And that is not the only way she has been helping out.

Sue, who lives in Singleton, is also a keen breadmaker and after a request from the parish council, has been getting up at 5am everyday to make fresh bread for more vulnerable members of the community.

She said: “You just feel so helpless in this situation,”

Sue's new work space

“You don’t know how long it’s going to go on.

“Personally, it helps me if I see I’m doing something. Otherwise you can get quite low.”

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