A RETIRED nurse from Stourport has died less than two weeks after marrying her long-time partner on a hospital ward.

Lesley Charles (Bailey), aged 58, died peacefully at her home in Windermere Way, surrounded by family on Tuesday, December 10.

Following her throat cancer diagnosis, Lesley and her partner Nicholas Bailey were forced to bring forward their wedding day, originally scheduled for January.

They were married in a special ceremony arranged by nursing staff at the head and neck ward at Worcestershire Royal Hospital on Wednesday, November 27, where Lesley was being cared for.

Lesley was born on April 24, 1961 in Crundalls Lane, Bewdley, the daughter of Ray and Hazel Charles.

She was the third eldest of five girls, growing up with her sisters Lynnette, Christine, Glenys and Amanda.

Lesley pursued a career as a nurse and worked for over ten years supporting people with learning disabilities at the former Lea Castle Hospital in Kidderminster.

In 1995 she decided she had more to offer the health service and started a Masters Degree in Quality and Health Care in the NHS.

Her dedication and tireless work earned Lesley a first class degree in 1998.

From there, Lesley moved into a junior management role at the Worcester NHS Trust, and made such an impression that within two years she was promoted to a senior role in quality management.

She regularly travelled around the Midlands delivering lectures and training courses and was very highly regarded by her colleagues.

The family say that one thing everyone would agree on is that Lesley was a very kind and considerate person, who "lit up a room by walking into it."

Lesley had a long held ambition to visit Australia, and fortunately before she became ill, she had a three week holiday there in April this year.

As her health started to fail, she undertook long sessions of chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Sister Christine Haystead said: "We were all there when she died peacefully at home.

"We knew she wasn't going to see the morning.

"When she passed away, Nicholas leant over and said 'thank you for being the love of my life.'

"She was really strong and and very independent.

"She was a very caring person and would want everyone to know that her job was a big part of her life.

"Lesley once said, if you enjoy the job you do, then you are not working."

In a joint statement, the family said: "It is fair to say that she enriched the lives of everyone who was lucky enough to know her, and she will be terribly missed by us all."

The family have confirmed that Lesley's funeral will take place on New Year's Eve (December 31) at 11.30am at Wyre Forest Crematorium.