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Managing an acute trust’s annual report from start to finish – during the pandemic

Background – The Countess of Chester Hospital NHS Foundation Trust asked us to project manage their 2020/21 annual report and to showcase their achievements in a public summary.


MLCSU Media, Editorial and Publications Team identified named leads for each section of the report and set up phone interviews with the CEO, Medical Director and Governors to shape the narrative. Timescales, a writing style and Word template were approved at pace. A designated project manager proposed timescales and an approved writing style at pace whilst keeping key partners regularly updated on that status of progress.

As content was provided from various sources we simultaneously proofed, sense-checked, removed jargon and ensured a consistent tone of voice throughout. Attention to detail was crucial in spotting inconsistencies and retaining version control as we worked through amends and applied formatting. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic the new statutory guidance that forms a basis for these reports was revised, our experience working on other clients’ annual reports and expertise in this area meant that we could swiftly act on this approach accordingly.

As this project was in flow there were leadership changes in the Trust, our team quickly addressed this and met with the key partners involved to agree on a new process and to keep the report on track for the deadline. We worked closely with our in-house design team to produce an engaging document that was concise, in plain English and followed the Trust’s branding guidelines.


The main report was approved by Parliament, and ready for upload by the deadline. The summary’s text and design were approved with minimal amends and were compliant against Web Content Accessibility Guidelines.

Case study - Editorial - Annual Report

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