This site is intended for Healthcare Professionals only

Pharmacy stalwart retires as Wicker Pharmacy’s superintendent

Pharmacy News

Pharmacy stalwart retires as Wicker Pharmacy’s superintendent

Martin Bennett, who has been the managing director of Wicker Pharmacy in Sheffield for 50 years, has said he is retiring from his role as its superintendent pharmacist after five decades.

Bennett, 76, announced he had stepped down from the position on X by insisting his “escape is under way," although he told Independent Community Pharmacist he will carry on working in the pharmacy three days a week. He served as Wicker's superintendent pharmacist since 1973 except for a period when James Wood, the director of member and local networks support at Community Pharmacy England, filled the role between 2007 and 2016.

When asked how he planned to use his extra time following his retirement, Bennett said he would use his "motorhome more." 

His replacement as superintendent pharmacist is Laura Willey, an independent prescriber who joined the business this year from Practice Plus Group, a provider of private and NHS health services where she was regional clinical lead pharmacist, helping deliver healthcare to people in prison.

News of Bennett’s retirement drew a reaction on X. The former chief pharmaceutical officer Keith Ridge wished him “all the best after so many years of excellent service to patients and the public.”

Reena Barai, who runs S G Barai Pharmacy and is Cheam and South Sutton primary care network’s community pharmacy lead, described Bennett as “the heart and soul of Wicker Pharmacy” but insisted Willey “will do a grand job.”

Samantha Quaye, the co-founder of Pharmacy Technicians of Colour, said Bennett was “a pillar of the community and an asset to the local people” and suggested he leaves “big shoes to fill.”

Bennett, who it is understood will remain Wicker Pharmacy’s chairperson, has been a community pharmacy stalwart. He was awarded an MBE in 2010 for services to pharmacy and this year, he was awarded a lifetime achievement accolade during the NHS Parliamentary Awards.

He has had an eventful career. He was in charge at Wicker Pharmacy when staff had to be evacuated by boat during the 2007 floods which hit large parts of the UK including Sheffield. There have been other dramatic but inspirational moments at the pharmacy on his watch. According to Yorkshire Live, Bennett once defibrillated a patient who had suffered a cardiac arrest, saved a man’s life after he went into anaphylactic shock and even used a fire extinguisher to help someone who came into his pharmacy on fire.

In August, staff at Wicker Pharmacy saved the lives of two patients who had overdosed in the space of a week just days after the team had attended training sessions on how to administer naloxone.

Willey took to X to say she was “unbelievably excited” to take over from Bennett and Wicker Pharmacy said “the fantastic” Willey “has a passion for innovation and a kind approach to the world which fits perfectly with our team.”


This story was originally published by Independent Community Pharmacist.

Copy Link copy link button

Pharmacy News

Stay up to date with all the news, learning and insight in the world of pharmacy.