''I want to help the Hospice as they helped me''

Local businesswoman, Hannah Graves, 29, is preparing for the St Elizabeth Hospice Midnight Walk for the second year in memory of her mum, Davina, and her Auntie Linda.

Both ladies were cared for by St Elizabeth Hospice in 2014 and 2008 respectively.

Hannah said: “Mum and Auntie Linda both had cancer when they were young and passed away having spent time at St Elizabeth Hospice.

“The staff there are amazing! They not only looked after Mum incredibly well but they also looked after all of us too.”

Hannah remembers how they were always allowed to stay when her mum was in the Inpatient Unit: “The nurses gave us blankets and mattresses so we could stay the night. They made it easy for us to be with Mum as much as possible.”

Hannah is doing the Midnight Walk with her friends, Lisa Wigmore, 39, and Kate Newman, 29.

“Last year I walked the five mile route with some friends and we raised over £1,000.
“This year we are doing the eight mile route and maybe, if we feel brave, we may stretch to the 13!”

The trio intend to enter into the fun spirit of the night by dressing up as pirates; probably buying extra costume accessories on the night from the St Elizabeth Hospice merchandise stall, as they did last year.

Hannah also intends to write a note to personalise a tag to hang on the Tree of Remembrance, at the Hospice, which all routes will pass.

“I think it is such a lovely way to remember a loved one who was cared for by the Hospice.
“My friends all walked with me, for me and in memory of Mum, even though they didn’t really know her well. Now I want to help St Elizabeth Hospice as they helped me.

“The work they do to provide the level of care that they give is amazing.

“The staff and volunteers made us feel so welcome. When the sun was out they would wheel my mum outside to lie in the sun in the beautiful garden.”

Hannah did not really know much about St Elizabeth Hospice as she had been away and unable to visit when her Auntie was being cared for, so it was her first time there when her mum was looked after.

“My first impression was they made it feel homely and not clinical, like a hospital, and you instantly feel relaxed there.

“I think St Elizabeth Hospice is a wonderful place and I will continue to help as much as I can.”

In addition to The Midnight Walk, Hannah, her dad, Trevor, and her sister, Larisa, ran a Charity Car boot last year which raised £341.79.

They also organised a charity disco in October last year to mark what would have been Davina’s 60th birthday which raised £1,420.

They plan to hold another disco this year as well.

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