BOXING champion Josh Wale visited Barnsley Hospital to help the ‘flu crew’ jab staff in wards and departments.

Josh, 29, from Brampton, is the reigning British bantamweight champion and became the first boxer from Barnsley to ever defend the title last month.

That got the occupational health and wellbeing team at the hospital wondering if he could help fight off flu and encourage staff to have their free vaccine to protect themselves and patients.

Julie Dowkes, specialist nurse practitioner, said: “We thought with Josh being a local lad and used to fighting off opponents that he could come down and help inspire some of the staff here to get their free vaccination. What he’s achieved is terrific and he was a pleasure when meeting staff and gaining an understanding of what everyone’s respective roles involve.”

Josh said he felt a connection to the hospital as that is where his two sons were born.

He said: “My two boys were born here and so when contact was made I couldn’t say no.

“When my boys were born I saw what they do on the maternity ward and every ward does brilliant work. I think all Barnsley people should get behind it and support it.

“I think the flu jab has got a bit of a stigma but people should take time out to go and get it, especially if you’re working in this kind of environment because it benefits everybody.”