TRIBUTES have poured in for an “extremely skilled and dedicated” healthcare worker who died after testing positive for coronavirus.

Peter Hart passed away yesterday on what would have been his 52nd birthday.

He had been working at the Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust having previously been a paramedic with the South East Coast Ambulance service - which provides care across Brighton and Hove, Sussex, Kent, Surrey and North East Hampshire.

His family shared an emotional statement following his passing.

It read: “Pete has touched so many people’s lives, spreading his joy and kindness wherever he went. (He was) an amazing husband and dad.

“Nothing will ever bring him back to us, though the overwhelming love and support from family, friends and the local community has given us such comfort.

“We are in awe of the tireless efforts of all NHS workers currently battling this evil virus.

“We would sincerely like to thank the incredible ICU team at East Surrey Hospital for their world-class, compassionate care.

“Our thoughts are also with his emergency department colleagues, whom he considered his second family.

“A huge hole has been left in our hearts. We love you, forever and always.”

Before joining Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust full time in 2017, Peter had also worked shifts in the emergency department at East Surrey Hospital for many years.

During his time there, he would also volunteer at the site with his pet therapy dog, “bringing joy and companionship to those in care”.

Jo Crerar, South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust’s operating unit manager for Gatwick and Redhill, said: “Peter was a highly-respected paramedic who continued to serve his community working additional bank shifts for SECAmb after joining East Surrey Hospital in 2017.

“Peter joined SECAmb in 2006 as an emergency care assistant and progressed in his career through roles as an ambulance technician, paramedic and clinical team leader, before qualifying as a paramedic practitioner.

“I know that he will be very much missed by his colleagues and friends alike.

“Our thoughts are with his family and everyone who knew Peter at this sad and difficult time.”

Michael Wilson CBE, chief executive of Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust, also paid tribute to his former colleague.

He said: “I was privileged to have known Peter for ten years and proud to call him a friend and a colleague.

“He was such a lovely man, whose priority was always the care of our patients and this would shine through whenever we spoke.

“All of our thoughts are with Peter’s family; we are in touch with them to offer our condolences and support.”

  • The coronavirus Sussex Crisis Fund has been set up to help those affected by the pandemic. The Argus’s charity and American Express have each donated £50,000 to kick-start the appeal. Grants will usually be for up to £5,000. More information is available at www.sussexgiving. To donate visit