Popular GP set to retire after almost three decades at the Market Harborough Medical Centre

Dr Tom Blake praised the efforts of the staff - especially during the last 12 months

Monday, 19th April 2021, 5:43 pm
Updated Monday, 19th April 2021, 5:44 pm
Dr Tom Blake is leaving Market Harborough Medical Centre on Wednesday April 21 – on his 60th birthday.

A veteran GP retiring from a busy surgery in Market Harborough after almost three decades has declared – it’s been brilliant!

Dr Tom Blake is leaving Market Harborough Medical Centre on Wednesday April 21 – on his 60th birthday.

The popular GP will celebrate the massive double landmark after devoting 27 years to the fast-growing Coventry Road practice.

Dr Tom Blake is leaving Market Harborough Medical Centre on Wednesday April 21 – on his 60th birthday.

“It’s been brilliant.

“It’s a fantastic medical centre and we have given all our patients a great surgery over many years,” said Tom, who lives in Market Harborough.

“We have given all of ourselves and I have been very proud to have played a part in such a fine team at our medical centre.

“We have grown out of all recognition while I’ve been there.

“We have taken on St Luke’s Hospital on Leicester Road and the surgery in Husbands Bosworth.

“We’ve all gone the extra mile for our patients,” insisted Tom, who’s got two sons and a daughter aged 27, 25 and 23.

“The last year has obviously been extraordinary throughout the Covid pandemic.

“We have had to up our game again.

“We have been offering video consultancies to patients, talking to people on the phone and seeing them the same day if needs be.

“We have also done ever so well with vaccinating people against the coronavirus – and making Harborough a safer place to live.

“We are ahead of the national average, we’re now down to vaccinating the 45-year-old group and it’s gone brilliantly.

“Setting up surgeries and bringing in vaccine supplies has been a nightmare at times.

“So I want to pay full credit to all our staff – they have gone above and beyond to make this work.

“I salute them all because they have worked so hard to roll out the vaccination programme over the last few months,” said Tom, a keen cyclist.

“It’s been a great privilege to have been involved in the lives of so many people, so many generations, over so many years.

“I will miss them and I will miss my partners and all the staff at the medical centre.

“Now I want to devote more time to my wife Jackie, who’s really brought up my family while I’ve been at work.

“I was on call all hours of the day and night for 15 years.

“So I’m determined to spend a lot more time with my wife and my family in the years that lie ahead.”

Paying tribute to Tom, Market Harborough Medical Centre said: “Dr Blake was one of the first of a new generation of GPs with special interests who could have become hospital consultants.

“Instead they devoted themselves to an individual list of patients providing high-quality medicine and continuity in and out of hours.

“Dr Blake brought a caring approach as an Occupational Health Physician to the Tungstone Battery Factory, a tough working environment for 10 years.”

Tom kickstarted his career with a degree in Biochemistry and Physiology from the University of London in 1982.

He went on to attain a medical degree at Leicester University with a distinction in medicine in 1987 before developing an interest in diabetes and dermatology.

Tom became a GP with Special Interest for 20 years as he introduced dermoscopy to the practice as well as working at the Out-Patient department at St Luke’s Hospital.

“He will always be remembered as a hard-working, diligent, thoughtful, caring GP who was always willing to give up his time for patients, colleagues and friends alike,” said the practice.

“Tom will not be easy to replace.”