A party for Jeanette and the hospice that cared for her

Keeping a promise they made 12 months ago, Jeanette Eastman’s husband Marcus and her son Steve held a special celebration evening at The Commodore Hotel on 13th September, raising £1,500 for Weston Hospicecare. The party marked Marcus’s 84th birthday and what would have been his and Jeanette’s Diamond Wedding Anniversary.

Jeanette passed away at Weston Hospicecare in 2014 and the family have been passionate fundraisers for the hospice ever since – organising events and holding car boot sales which have raised over £5,000 in vital funds so far.

More than 100 friends and family came to the celebration at The Commodore. They were treated to an evening of entertainment by a line-up of talented local performers including Dave “Elvis” Stevens, Jordan Evans, country girl Julie Sketchley, Chris Rainbow, Jo Hopson and Steve himself – who also hosted the evening – making a late night appearance as the Weston Wurzel.

Among the guests was Gwen Harding, Hospice Community Palliative Care Nurse Specialist, who cared for Jeanette at home throughout her illness.

“It was a fantastic night and I was so pleased that Gwen came,” said Marcus. “She gave us such comfort and care when Jeanette was  ill –  Jeanette thought she was like  a guardian angel – she was just wonderful. The care all the family received from the hospice was fantastic and we are so pleased to be able to give something back.”

The Commodore provided the venue free of charge and many local traders provided prizes for a grand raffle.  Steve said, “We are grateful to everyone who supported us with the evening and it was lovely to be able to continue to benefit the hospice which means such a lot to our family.”

If you would like to support the hospice too, please call or visit westonhospicecaregroup.org.uk/support-us

Weston Hospicecare is Charity of the Year for Sainsbury’s Worle

Weston Hospicecare is very pleased to have been chosen by Sainsbury’s in Worle as the store’s Charity of the Year for the second year running.

The store will run a monthly programme of fundraising activities and events that raise awareness for the hospice, getting colleagues, customers and the general public involved.

Last year, Sainsbury’s Worle raised over £6,270 for the hospice and they are hoping to do even better this year.

In fact, the store has already raised over £1,000 this year by participating in the charity’s Nifty Fifty fundraising challenge. Their enterprising team won the challenge by making the most money out of £50 in fifty days. And there’s much more planned.

Simon Lufflam, Store Manager,  said: “We’re delighted to be supporting Weston Hospicecare again – a local charity which has touched the lives and hearts of many colleagues, family and friends and one which is so vitally important to all in our community.”

Weston Hospicecare is looking forward to working in partnership with the Worle store again. Sally Davis from the charity said: “We are really honoured to have been chosen as Sainsbury’s Charity of the Year for the second year running. The support we receive from the store is amazing – the staff are great supporters and passionate fundraisers.”

If your business or organisation is interested in supporting Weston Hospicecare, please call us on  or visit westonhospicecaregroup.org.uk/support-us/business-partnerships

Runners hit the streets to give something back to Weston hospice

Three runners took on the challenge of the Bristol Half Marathon to raise funds for a Weston charity.

Gemma Griffiths, Miriam Ford and Natasha Sealey all completed the 13.1 mile course on 13 September in aid of Weston Hospicecare.

Natasha has raised around £500. She said:

“I ran the Bristol Half Marathon for Weston Hospicecare because they looked after my Nan in her final weeks. They did such an amazing job of not only looking after my Nan but my family too. The staff at Weston Hospicecare were so accommodating and nothing was too much trouble.

“The race was one of the most challenging things I have ever done but crossing the finish line felt amazing!”

Instead of running the race, Miriam Ford completed the course as a Nordic walk. When asked about her walking poles, she explained:

“My husband Steve was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer in 2012.

“Steve became very poorly very quickly towards the end of his illness and spent his last three days at Weston Hospicecare. The care provided by the hospice to both Steve and myself was truly amazing.

“I wanted to support the hospice so that they can continue to help others like they helped me and Steve.

“Steve and I had enjoyed running together and had both previously completed 10 half marathons each, the first in 2004. I had not been able to run during Steve’s illness, but I promised him that I would complete the Bristol Half Marathon for him and for the hospice.

“When Steve became ill and was no longer able to run, he took up Nordic walking and this kept him going when things got tough. Earlier in the year I had been unable to train due to an injury and it seemed appropriate then to Nordic walk this half marathon as a way of combining two things that he really loved. It was an emotional day but I had so much fun, with tears of joy and sadness.

“Together with my niece Sophie Wood, who ran the Bristol Half for the first time, we have collected in the region of £1,000, but donations are still being received.”

For Gemma Griffiths, the Bristol Half was the fifth of several challenges she is completing in aid of the hospice this year. “The 13.1 miles of tarmac pounding was definitely the hardest challenge I have done yet,” she said. She has raised around £200 so far.

She’s now gearing up for the gruelling Tough Mudder London South challenge on 26 September.

The Bristol Half Marathon loops through the historic harbourside and Avon Gorge, passing twice under the Clifton Suspension Bridge. The race has been held each year since 1989.

To take on your own challenge for the hospice, please call or visit westonhospicecaregroup.org.uk/challenge-hospice/

Nifty Fifty fundraisers turn a small amount into thousands

A 50-day, £50 challenge has raised thousands of pounds for Weston Hospicecare.

“Nifty Fifty” challenged teams from local organisations and businesses to turn £50 (kindly donated by Weston College) into as much money as possible in 50 days.

At an awards ceremony last week it was revealed that the challengers had turned their cash into an impressive total of £4,334, which will all go to support the local hospice. A team from Sainsbury’s Worle generated the most funds, raising just over £1,000. They received the Nifty Fifty winner’s award, presented by Dr Paul Phillips OBE, Principal and Chief Executive of Weston College.

Dr Phillips said: “Weston College was delighted to support the Nifty Fifty campaign, and I am very impressed by the imaginative way in which the fund-raising teams reinvested the £50 they were given for the benefit of this very worthy cause.”

Sainsbury’s Worle manager Simon Luffman explained how they raised so much money:

“We took the £50 and made up two ‘Taste The Difference’ hampers, worth £25 each, which we then raffled.

“This raffle raised £450, which we then used to make some bigger hampers, which we raffled to raise even more money.”

John Bailey, Director of Patient Services for Weston Hospicecare, said he was delighted with the amount of money raised by the campaign.

He said: “The support and care that people receive at Weston Hospicecare is amazing.

“This is not the wealthiest community, and for an area like this to keep a service like Weston Hospicecare going – because 70% of our funding comes from donations – is amazing, and is why we have to think of new ways of raising funds all the time.

“The Nifty Fifty campaign has been very successful, and we will be looking to repeat it in the future, and hopefully raise even more.”

Weston Hospicecare thanks Weston College for their support with running Nifty Fifty, and all the other teams who put so much work into the fundraising challenge: Marks and Spencer (Flowerdown), Liza French, Quality Solicitors Burroughs Day, Richardson’s Wills, Prime Candidate, Weston Electrical Services, Techvolution, ASDA, Virgin Active, Hutton Primary School and EuroSigns, Shop Station and Casa Security.

‘Party in the Park’ at Sand Bay raises thousands for hospice

Local bands kicked off a great bank holiday weekend at Sand Bay. Country View Holiday Park hosted a charity concert on Saturday with over six hours of live music.

300 people came to enjoy the ‘Party in the Park’ featuring music from local duo The Chicken Teddys, resident group The Misfits, and headline band Rang a Tang, who kept everyone up on their feet until well into the evening.

Party in the Park raised an amazing £2,000 for Weston Hospicecare – and that was just the start of the holiday park’s charity weekend. On Sunday, the fun continued at their annual barbecue event. In addition to a raffle with 20-plus prizes, the afternoon’s festivities included some wonderful pie-in-the-face challenges and hilarious ‘human’ Hungry Hippos competitions.

Organiser Carl Woods of Country View Holiday Park called it, “a wonderful weekend of fun and frolics – enjoyed by all!”

Over the whole energetic weekend, Country View Holiday Park raised an incredible £2,778 for Weston Hospicecare, a local charity that they have been pleased to support for several years. They’re already looking forward to doing it all again on the August bank holiday weekend in 2016!

To hold your own fundraising event for the hospice, call or see westonhospicecaregroup.org.uk/support-us

Photos taken by Carl Wood.