Background: This paper presents a qualitative study protocol focusing on older peoples' experience of recovery in acute care following hip fracture and also the experiences of their family or informal carers. There is limited evidence regarding older people and their relatives'/carers' experiences of recovery in acute care.; Aim: The study had two research questions. First what is the experience of older people who have suffered a fractured hip and secondly what is the relatives'/carers' experience of being alongside a person who has suffered a fractured hip?; Methods: The methodology chosen is phenomenology using the methods of interviewing and participant observation. It is planned to recruit a purposive sample of up to 40 patients including those with memory loss who have suffered a fractured hip, and up to 30 of their relative/carers, and up to 20 staff may choose to take part in the observation sessions. Analysis will be through drawing out units of meaning, bringing them together to form categories and themes of experience.; Conclusion: This study will extend knowledge by exploring what is important to patients and their relatives/carers in the early phase of recovery. Practice based principles that can be integrated into the hip fracture pathway and enhance future care will be developed from the study findings.; Crown Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.