Dr Nicola Ryley will join Northern Devon Healthcare Trust for 18 months.

Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust has appointed Dr Nicola Ryley as interim director of nursing.

Nicola joins the trust for 18 months, coming from the Aneurin Bevan University Health Board in South Wales.

She was responsible for the leadership and professional regulation of more than 6,000 nursing staff at the health board, one of the largest and most complex NHS organisations in the UK.

She has previously held the positions of head of nursing and operational performance at Bro Morgannwg NHS Trust and divisional nurse at Cardiff and Vale NHS Trust, with responsibility in the areas of surgery, emergency medicine, critical care and dentistry.

She replaces Debbie Bennion, who recently joined Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board as a unit nurse director at the Princess of Wales Hospital in Bridgend.

Dr Alison Diamond, trust chief executive, said: "The position of director of nursing is a pivotal one for any trust and in Nicola I'm sure we have appointed the right person to oversee the safe, effective and sustainable delivery of services to our patients over the coming months."