Gayle Richards from North Devon Healthcare Trust has been awarded a Travelling Fellowship from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust

A North Devon nurse has been awarded a prestigious fellowship to travel abroad to learn about new ways of tackling diabetes.

Gayle Richards, from Woolacombe, has won a Travelling Fellowship from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust after beating 1,031 other applications and 285 people at interview stage.

The fellowship gives pays for UK citizens to travel overseas in pursuit of new and better ways of tackling a wide range of challenges facing the UK.

Gayle, a lead specialist nurse with the Northern Devon Healthcare Trust diabetes team, said: "I am really excited to have been awarded this fellowship.

"I am now looking forward to travelling to the USA and the Netherlands to meet some of the world's leading diabetes experts and bring back the latest best practice ideas to Devon."

She will be attending the American Diabetes Association Annual Conference in San Diego in June, known as the most important conference in the world on the subject of diabetes.

She will also take part in an educational programme in Boston, where she will attend a number of clinics that help people manage episodes of hypoglycaemia.

In the autumn, Gayle will head to Holland to learn about another educational programme, which teaches people to recognise warning signs of hypoglycaemia and includes online help for patients.

Andrea Bell, deputy director of nursing and head of professional practice at NDHT, said: "This is a fantastic achievement for Gayle and also for the diabetes team at the trust.

"The team does a lot of great work. The ideas and additional knowledge that Gayle brings back with her have a potential to not only benefit people with diabetes in northern Devon but nationally too."