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June 2013

Your Hospice We are growing

Retail therapy

Fashion treasures from our charity shops

Step out for a loved one

Join our Solstice Walk

Family ties Mum pays tribute to her daughter

Creative space to expand


Take Time for Tea

Chief Executive’s Welcome With the eventual arrival of spring, there is a fresh energy about the Hospice. As ever, our team of staff and volunteers are developing all our services and activities to support the people of Gloucestershire who need our care. Cotswold Care Hospice is an independent charity providing specialist care for people living with or affected by a life-limiting illness in Gloucestershire. It is through the generosity of the community that we are able to provide our vital care and support free of charge to the people of this county when they need it the most.

Published by: Cotswold Care Hospice, Burleigh Lane, Minchinhampton, Gloucestershire GL5 2PQ T: 01453 886868 F: 01453 885282 E: Patron: HRH The Prince of Wales, KG, KT, GCB, OM Registered Company Limited by Guarantee. Number 2213662 Cotswold Care Hospice is a registered charity. Number 298627 Printed by: Severnprint Designed by: Melanie Wood Design


Despite the recession, we continue to extend our services to reach out to even more people in Gloucestershire. In this issue of our Hospice magazine we cover both sides of our ‘business’: generating income and delivering care. At its simplest, we raise money and turn it into care. We excitedly look forward to a significant expansion of our creative facilities thanks to a two-thirds grant from the Department of Health. We will have to work hard to raise the remaining £55,000 so that building work can begin. The only thing holding back the start of another project to develop the Hospice gardens for therapeutic use is shortage of funds, but we are always active and optimistic. I hope you find this edition informative and inspiring; as ever, the stories of patients and families shed light on the truth about how Hospice care can make all the difference in people’s lives. All our stories are linked by a strong sense of community. We are, after all, your community Hospice. I thank you for all your support to date and that which is yet to come.

Jules Eaton, Chief Executive

Grant success for creative space


otswold Care Hospice plans to expand its creative therapy space and services, thanks to a £117,000 government grant. The Department of Health grant will pay for two-thirds of the extension at the Hospice at Minchinhampton. “Often, when people who are dealing with a life-limiting illness they cannot easily find the words to express what they are feeling. We find that art, as well as being relaxing and recreational, allows them to gently explore those emotions and give them an airing,” said Jules Eaton, Hospice Chief Executive. The Hospice’s new building was completed five years ago and already the creative therapy service has outgrown its space.  “We are thrilled to learn about the Department of Health grant which will go a long way towards the cost of our creative therapy extension. This grant represents two thirds of the overall costs, leaving us to find £55,000 in order to complete the project.” The expansion will allow the charity, which provides all its services free of charge, to develop its range of creative therapies, and offer them to more people with life-limiting illnesses and their carers.

“Our patients find creative therapy tremendously stimulating and liberating,” “There are many ways to express themselves through practical art projects, such as painting, sketching, stained glass, silk painting or glazing pottery.” Work could start within the next five to eight weeks. Now the Hospice’s fundraising team will work flat out to raise the final £55,000.

We’re breaking records The Cotswold Care Hospice @ Home service has broken another record for the total number of care hours it has provided. In March, the team provided more than 2,500 hours of care in people’s homes in Gloucestershire. This was 225 more hours that the previous record set in January 2013. Our Hospice @ Home service is expanding, find out more on page 4


Meet Matt – one of our team Every hour of the day our Hospice @ Home team are supporting people in their own homes. Whether it is at the end of life or providing respite care, the Hospice @ Home team play a very important role in supporting the community. Matt Cook is one of the Hospice @ Home team. He works as a healthcare assistant. He believes it is a privilege to be allowed into someone’s life and someone’s home at such a crucial time. He has worked as a healthcare assistant on the Hospice @ Home team for the past two years. He provides support for people who want to spend their final days at home. 4.

“You know that someone has a choice of where they want to be for their final days and that you’re helping do that. It’s very satisfying.

Matt Cook, pictured right, with Hazel and Doug of the Hospice @ Home team

The 32-year-old from Gloucester always wanted to work with people. He worked for a while with children before moving on to care homes and looking after the elderly. Matt finds his job rewarding because he knows that he is helping people exercise their choice of where they want to spend their final days. Matt supports patients by providing physical care such as washing and personal care. He also is there to listen if patients or their families wish to talk. “Some people really appreciate having someone there to talk to. I see my patients just as anyone else – individuals with wants and needs. I treat them as normal people because that is what they are.” While the work can be intense, Matt says he finds it very rewarding.

“You appreciate your life and it puts everything into perspective.” How you can access Hospice @ Home The Hospice @ Home team works closely with your district nursing team and GP practice - either of these services can make a referral to the Hospice on your behalf.


‘The nurses took such a load off us’


dwin Nuttall helped raised money for Cotswold Care Hospice through his involvement with Cotswold Tyndale Rotary Club.

He never thought that he would ever need the charity’s services – until his wife Barbara was diagnosed with cancer. Edwin, a retired IT systems manager, and Barbara, formerly a teacher, married in 1993 and they set up home in Dursley. They became active in many local groups including Rotary, Cam & Dursley Camera Club, and Dursley ’91 Probus. A bubbly and outgoing person, Barbara loved being with people. She flourished as a photographer after joining the Camera Club. Barbara first became ill while on a cruise in the Black Sea. She returned home to be diagnosed with endometrial cancer. Barbara underwent surgery and two 18 week courses of chemotherapy but never complained. Edwin became


Barbara’s carer and took over all the household duties. “I didn’t realise how worn out I was until that first visit from a Cotswold Care Hospice @ Home nurse. The nurse told me that we simply didn’t know how hard we were working and that we needed support,” said Edwin. “Having the Hospice @ Home nurses took such a load off both of us. Barbara was determined to die at home. It was nonnegotiable. I probably wouldn’t have managed to fulfil her wishes without Cotswold Care Hospice.” Barbara died at home on August 2, 2012. She was 69.

Barbara Nuttall

“Barbara was

positive almost to a fault, even in her last months. She was always bright and cheerful, a shining beacon of hope.

Help us care for the future Writing a will and keeping it up to date is important if you wish to provide for your family and loved ones in the future. Cotswold Care Hospice is holding a Make A Will Fortnight from September 16-27, 2013. During that time, solicitors will donate their time to write a standard basic will in return for a donation to Cotswold Care Hospice. Suggested donations are £80 for a single will, £120 for two identical wills and £50.00 to update an existing will. Norman and Kate Kay had their wills written during the fundraising event last year and made a donation to Cotswold Care Hospice. The couple were going on a trip-of-alifetime to the Antarctic and wanted to be prepared for all eventualities.

“I am a retired solicitor. Lawyers never get around to making their own wills. Everyone should make a will – and not leave it until you are 60 like we did,” said Kate. The couple’s neighbour is a volunteer for the Hospice so it seemed an ideal opportunity to have their wills written during Make a Will Fortnight. “It’s such a good cause that it was a win-win. We were pleased to be able to support the charity at the same time.” Donations made during our Make a Will fortnight help us to provide vital care and support to patients, their families and their carers facing one of the most difficult times in their lives.

To find out more about Make a Will Fortnight and the participating solicitors please contact Kathryn Morton, Trusts and Legacies manager on 01453 886868 or email 7.

‘I knew I needed help’ T

eresa Vance referred herself to the Hospice following her surgery and chemotherapy Mother of two Teresa Vance discovered she had breast cancer by accident. One of her children was cuddling up to her when she realised that her breast was tender. She went to the doctor to sort out the pain and the infection, it was through this appointment that the cancer was diagnosed. It was thought that the tumour had blocked the ducts and caused the infection. Teresa, who was 47 at the time of diagnosis, underwent chemotherapy, surgery and radiotherapy. One of Teresa’s ‘chemo buddies’ who she met regularly at the hospital suggested Teresa attend Cotswold Care Hospice. “I thought the Hospice was for dying people. But I realised that I needed to do something, that I couldn’t get back to ‘normal’ without some form of rehabilitation.” Teresa referred herself. She came for an appointment and started a 12 week programme with Day Hospice. “When I first arrived I felt I wasn’t ill enough to be here. Yet it became a home from home and something I looked forward to. It’s a lovely supportive environment.” Eighteen months on, Teresa is looking forward to the future. “Cotswold Care Hospice helped me come to terms with my cancer and gave me the space and the time to have a look at my life and think about if there’s anything that needs changing. So when I move forward I know I have made positive choices.”


By the end of it I was a complete shadow of myself. I felt mentally exhausted. I knew I needed something, some sort of help, to move forward but I didn’t know what it was that I needed.

We’re here for you Cotswold Care Hospice is working hard to ensure people can easily get help and support when they need it most. While many patients are referred by health or social care professionals you can also refer yourself directly or ask a carer or family member to apply on their behalf. Who do we support? Anyone who has a life-limiting illness including: Parkinson’s Disease, respiratory disease, Motor Neurone Disease, heart disease or cancer. We have a dedicated administration team who are the first point of contact for all care inquiries or referrals. Referrals can be made by phone, post or fax. At the first point of contact, we will ask for basic information about you and your illness and what you require help or support with. Your referral is then passed to the most appropriate team member, who will contact you directly. “If you are unsure our care team will discuss your needs with you and recommend the most appropriate support,” said Sian Cole, head of care services. People can refer themselves to Day Hospice and to outpatient services which include complementary therapies, counselling, bereavement support and Art for Health. Hospice @ Home referrals are made by health or social care professionals. For services provided by Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and hosted at Cotswold Care Hospice, you must be referred by a health care professional, usually your GP.


Charity shop treasures Stylist Kate Parker set out to visit Cotswold Care Hospice charity shops to see what treasures she could find.

As a teenager I would always head to charity shops to get my fashion fix. Even then, I wanted something unique. I also desired clothes that were beautifully made from luxe fabrics - far out of reach of my Saturday Girl wages. I soon learnt that if you headed for charity shops in desirable locations, you could find some real fashion gems. My first stop was Bath Road, Cheltenham where I found two vintage pieces from fashion houses Jaeger and Daks. On initial inspection the jacket £8.95 and skirt £12.50 (above right) looked a little dated. However, in the hands of a skilled seamstress, they could be re-modelled into something new and stylish.  Two fabulous jewel coloured dresses from LK Bennett also caught my eye. The lady who donated them told the staff that Cotswold Care Hospice had cared for her Grandma when she was ill.  She donated the dresses as a thank you.   Finding a stunning dress for just £22 is also a real gift for anyone with a wedding to go to. Next I visited Stroud and, on the topic of weddings, their manager has turned the upstairs area into a bridal shop. Here I found a selection of outfits that would be ideal for a bridal party. 

Kate Parker, Personal Stylist & Personal Shopper


I decided to style a fantasy wedding. A beautiful apricot gown £25 – a key colour for the season – would make a fantastic bridesmaid’s dress. For the

flower girl I found a dress sprinkled with pretty gold butterflies £19.50. Perfect for the mother-of-the bride, was a Vera Mount matching shift dress and longline jacket which has a flattering gold paisley pattern in soft tones £39.  A short-sleeved dusty rose Ronit Zilkha dress £25, teamed with a rose pink hat £17.50 (shown far left) could work perfectly for my ‘would be’ mother-ofthe-groom.  These unworn strappy gold heels (shown far left) from LK Bennett, would go with any of the adult dresses, priced at just £25 - original price £139. In the Tetbury shop I discovered two great spring staples – a cute navy jacket from Zara (far right) is a real fashion steal £6 and an ASOS blouse £4.50 (left) that tunes perfectly into the monochrome trend. 

In Minchinhampton I found a pair of black patent loafers by Italian designer Salvatore Ferragamo. Originally £199, these shoes are now a real steal at £40.  I found some real treasures on my trip round the Hospice shops.  They can be a great resource for some quality fashion finds at amazing prices.

Wanted your donations

Cotswold Care Hospice charity shops are in desperate need of donations. Clothes, bric-abrac, books, accessories, furniture – we will take it all. Every bin bag of clothes could be worth £50 to the charity. To find our charity shop nearest to you, visit

Mother Jo Boulsfield writes about her daughter Harriet who was supported by Cotswold Care Hospice.


Living with a life-threatening illness changes the way you live in a radical way. Alongside the terror and instability is the opportunity to think deeply about the meaning of life, and what your priorities are.

Stroud, and Cotswold Care Hospice she managed to maintain a life that was fun, dignified, and creative.

You can stop doing things that are not truly ‘you’. Cotswold Care Hospice provides professional help to make sense of your ‘new life’.

In hospital the staff allowed her to have a bed on the ground floor next to a garden so she could be wheeled out into the sunshine. She ate fresh, nutritious, homecooked food every day. Harrie enjoyed music and films, travel and visits to the sea. She wrote songs, taught piano and ukulele and performed with her band.

I know because I had treatment for breast cancer eight years ago and Cotswold Care Hospice supported me through it with counselling, art therapy, and massage. No mother ever thinks that such an experience would help her care for her own daughter. My daughter Harrie was diagnosed with cancer of the spine when she was 27. They removed the tumour as best they could at Frenchay Hospital at Bristol. Following surgery Harrie was paralysed from the waist down. She had radiotherapy on her brain and spine in Cheltenham General and re-hab at Stoke Mandeville. She came to live with me as it was relatively easy to make my open-plan house in Stroud accessible for a wheelchair user. Harrie went from being an able-bodied actor/musician living an independent life to moving back home to mother and being in the hands of the medical profession. She chose to get as much pleasure out of life as she could, within the constraints that had been handed her. With the help of her partner Karen, family, friends, neighbours, the NHS, Physability

She took charge, and was brave enough to request the things that, for her, made a difference.

Between the MRI scans there were memorable and delightful moments. But always round the corner was the wondering if the cancer would start growing again. When it returned Harrie had a second spinal operation. Later on she was told the cancer was back with a vengeance and that no more could be done for her. At that point Harrie felt relief, that she could stop trying, she could fully relax. She made some major decisions. To marry Karen, to hold a celebration of her life party, to have a glitzy 31st birthday party, to go on holiday to Cornwall with her close family,  to de-clutter and decorate the house so that they could live in a calm peaceful space, and to use all the resources at hand, foremost Cotswold Care Hospice. When she came back from her first visit to day therapy at Cotswold Care Hospice she was glowing. “It’s beautiful mum, I’m going to have a whole day there every week,” she said. What will you do I asked. “Have a bath,” she replied. 13.

That meant a proper accessible bath with space, time and support to luxuriate, followed by beautiful food cooked exactly as she wanted. Then an afternoon playing in the art room with a wonderful art practitioner. She was picked up by one of the Hospice’s volunteer drivers and taken door to door. She could fully relax. In the last six months she was under the care of the consultant based at Cotswold Care who she felt understood her as a person, not just as a patient. She was able to plan with this consultant how she wanted to die. The structures were able to be put in place for Harrie not to go to hospital but to be able to stay at home amongst her loved ones, in peaceful, familiar surroundings. When the time came we were able to accept what was happening, knowing we were professionally supported by experienced, empathetic nurses. The Cotswold Care Hospice @ Home nurses inhabited our house with sensitivity. When they walked in they brought no ‘baggage’ just a calm reassuring human presence. We feel very lucky, in unlucky circumstances, to have been able to have had so much quality support from this brilliant charity that is situated just a couple of miles away from our home. That support didn’t stop with Harrie’s death. Various members of the family are having bereavement counselling and it is all the more heart-warming to do that in the building and gardens that Harrie so appreciated, where she was able to be herself and find solace at the most challenging time of her life.


Harrie died on January 10th, 2012 at the age of 32 surrounded by her beloved Karen and family.

Remembering our loved ones Three women are stepping out on the Solstice Walk in memory of a dear friend. Liz Fraser, Tammy Kwan and Annie Blick, all members of Stroud Camera Club, will walk in memory of fellow club member, Diane Watkins. The 10km Solstice Walk – on June 21, the longest day of the year - is open to everyone and will start and finish at the Hospice grounds in Minchinhampton. Diane first attended Cotswold Care Hospice day Hospice in 2000 after being diagnosed with breast cancer. She attended day Hospice again in 2006 when the cancer returned.

“The therapy that she

received at Cotswold Care Hospice gave her strength and inspiration to face the cancer and live a life with a most positive outlook, said Annie.

Diane passed away in 2011 at the age of 65. 16.

“I have done the Midnight Walk so when I heard about the Solstice Walk I thought it sounded like such a special thing to do and we thought it would be nice to do in memory of Diane as it will be close to the second anniversary of her death,” said Liz. At 10pm balloons dedicated to lost loved ones will be released – the same time as the charity’s Hospice @ Home nurses visit people in their homes to provide vital night-time care. “I have friends and friends of friends who have had cancer and used the Hospice,” said Liz. “Cotswold Care Hospice provides such an important service in Stroud to so many people in their hour of need. I wouldn’t want to imagine what we would do without it.” Every year Cotswold Care Hospice helps more than 500 people with life-limiting illnesses and their families. This year, its Hospice @ Home team will provide more than

20,000 hours of care in people’s homes. All the services are provided free of charge. It costs £2.85 million to run the Hospice and provide the services with 90 per cent of the money needed coming from the community through fundraising.

Diana Watkins

To request an entry form, please contact the fundraising team on 01453 886868 or email You can also register online at

Members of the Stroud Camera Club are stepping out in memory of club colleague Diane Watkins at the Cotswold Care Hospice Solstice Walk. They are; (from left) Annie Blick, Liz Fraser and Tammy Kwan


Whats on... June 2013

Cotswold Farm Park will be fundraising for the Hospice during the month of June - please see their website for details of their events

8th-15th June

Lansdown Art Club Summer Exhibition at the Subscription Rooms, Stroud in aid of Cotswold Care Hospice 10:00am -5:00pm Mon-Sat.

14th June

Cirencester Cotswold Care Hospice Shop is holding a quiz night at the Jubilee Club, Cirencester. Tickets £5 per person to include ploughman’s supper. Please contact the Cirencester shop: 01285 652545 for tickets and information.

15th June

Cotswold Rock n Ride at the Crown and Sceptre, Horns Road, Stroud in aid of the Hospice 11:00am -midnight. Please contact the fundraising team on 01453 886868. 18.

21st June Solstice Walk A 10k walk on the longest day of the year and an opportunity to remember a loved one. It starts and finishes at the Hospice and will include a balloon launch, entertainment and stalls. It’s open to everyone. To request an entry form please contact the Hospice fundraising team on 01453 886868 or email fundraising@ or please register online by visiting www. solsticewalk

11th July

Gloucester Severn Rotary annual charity sporting dinner in aid of Cotswold Care Hospice at King’s School, Gloucester. For tickets please contact David Kelly 07885 761501 or email: sportingdinner

21st July Strawberry Cream Tea Tetbury Supporters Group is organising a Strawberry Cream Tea

at Long Newton. What more could you ask for than a delicious tea in a lovely garden with sunny and warm weather! For further information please contact Barbara Ball 01666 504656

18th August Take Time for Tea party at Cotswold Care Hospice 2:30pm-4:00pm. Everyone is welcome to join us for a vintage tea party on the lawn. Guests will be able to enjoy a tour of the Hospice and a range of activities. Tickets £5.00 per person can be purchased by contacting the Hospice on 01453 886868 or email fundraising@

6th-8th Sept Nailsworth Art Festival, St Georges Church, Nailsworth An exhibition of local talent in Nailsworth covering watercolours, oils, mixed media, photography and glass. In aid of Cotswold Care Hospice and St Georges Church.

16-27th Sept Cotswold Care Hospice is holding a Make A Will Fortnight. For more information, please see details on page seven.

23rd October Film Evening at the Dolphin Hall, Tetbury 7:00pm for 7:30pm in aid of Cotswold Care Hospice Tetbury Supporter Group will once again be hosting their annual film night with the support of Tetbury Film Society. This is an ever-popular event, so we advise booking early as tickets go quickly. For more information, please contact: Barbara Ball 01666 504656

26th October Annual Craft Fayre, Coaley Village Hall 10am-4pm organised by the Cam & Dursley Supporters Group. Crafts, teas and cakes available, quilt raffle and tombola.  Free admission plenty of parking.

Cotswold Care Hospice invites you to 30th November Wotton Supporters Group is running a Christmas stall at The Charities Fayre, Civic Centre, Wotton from 10 - 4pm.

6th December Christmas Flower and Decoration Demonstration. A new event has been introduced for 2013 as a perfect start to the Christmas festivities. A special demonstration of how to arrange Christmas flowers and make decorations will be held at the Dolphin Hall, Tetbury with a chance to win the beautiful creations in a raffle. Tickets will include tea and mince pies. For more information, please contact: Barbara Ball 01666 504656 Cotswold Care Hospice hold a series of training courses and education events - for details, please see our website www.cotswold for details

Take Time for Tea W

e all lead very busy lives and often have to juggle a lot of activities in a day. How often do you get the opportunity just to stop and take time for yourself ? This is what we do at Cotswold Care Hospice – we give our patients and their families our time. For many people when they first come for a visit, they are at the lowest time of their life – and they come to us because we can help turn their lives around. By giving our time to support each person from the very start, at diagnosis, we can help each person regain control over their lives. By taking time for tea – a very simple thing – we want you to take time for yourself. Perhaps take time for your family too – when was the last time you sat down together and enjoyed a simple act of hospitality such as having afternoon tea? Do you have a friend or relative you haven’t seen for a long time, is there someone up the road who lives alone, who doesn’t have a family around them for support? Inviting your friends, family or even your neighbours to come and take time for tea, you can put a little positive time back into their lives. A tea party is a great way to raise funds to support Cotswold Care Hospice. You can make your party as simple or as elaborate as you

like but the special thing about Cotswold Care Hospice’s Take Time for Tea campaign is that each of you will have a unique reason for holding your event. If you would like to hold a tea party in aid of Cotswold Care Hospice, please contact the fundraising office tel: 01453 733701 or by email we will then send you a simple fundraising pack and invites to help you with your party.

your Socupspleaseandraise join us for this year’s ‘Take Time for Tea’ campaign.


e are hosting a Vintage Tea Party at Cotswold Care Hospice 18th August 2:30pm-4:00pm. Tickets £5.00 per person can be purchased by contacting the Hospice on 01453 886868 or email

Take Time for


Through support – friendships can start at Cotswold Care Hospice


eople who have lost loved ones are getting support from a bereavement group run by Cotswold Care Hospice.

Lorraine Walsh’s husband Kelvin died in December 2011. She first came to Cotswold Care Hospice for one-to-one bereavement counselling before joining the group. “I was so upset that I couldn’t even get out of bed. It hit me so hard. My doctor suggested I come to Cotswold Care Hospice for counselling,” said Lorraine. “I don’t know how I would have got through this without their support.” Lorraine, from Eastington, said in the group everyone supported each other. “In the group everyone is in the same position. Each person has someone they really cared about die. They know what you are going through. “Until you have lost someone close you don’t know the depth of the feelings of loss.” Mal Brown, from Cam, joined the group following the death of his wife Vera who attended day hospice at Cotswold Care. “Coming here has helped me enormously. Here I can talk about Vera and people understand,” said Mal. “Now that the course is finished we all hope

to stay in touch with each other. We have become friends.” Terry Acraman, whose wife Chris attended day Hospice, admitted he struggled when she died. “I was in a right state. I first came to the Hospice for one-to-one counselling before joining the group,” said Terry.“The group has been tremendous. At first I didn’t think I would come to the group and decided I would come to the first meeting but not anymore. But once I got here I changed my mind. Just to know that someone is feeling the same as I was proved to be a great support. I decided I would try to stand up and talk and that was a big thing for me. I’m surprised because I talked quite a bit.” The group allows people to meet others who are coming to terms with the death of a loved one. They meet regularly over a six month period, at fortnightly and later monthly sessions. The sessions are led by a bereavement counsellor and a bereavement support worker.

Supporting our carers


arers need support too – Cotswold Care Hospice has created a new role which will concentrate on carer support and user involvement.

The new post, which is being paid for by a charitable grant from the John Honey Children’s Settlement started in May. “We want to improve our services to carers and this role will allow us to look in more detail at carers’ needs,” said Sian Cole, Head of Care Services for Cotswold Care Hospice. “At the moment, once a person is identified as a carer they are often placed on a register but in real terms don’t get a great deal of support or help. Carers play a vital role in supporting someone with a life limiting illness. We want to help ensure they are equipped with the right skills and knowledge to carry out this important job. Our care support-lead role will provide practical advice and support. That may be signposting them to services they can access or to help prepare them for life after caring.”


The new role will also work closer with hospice users so that they can shape and contribute to how Cotswold Care Hospice will run in the future.

Mal and Vera Brown knew the moment they met at work that they were meant to be together.

“I knew the second we met.

I thought ‘here’s a woman I want to get to know’. The second day of being with her I knew I was in love with her and it was the same for Vera, said Mal.

They were together for 30 years, living much of that time in Cam. “Everyone who knew Vera loved her. She had that sort of serenity about her. We did a lot of laughing together.” In 1999 Vera was diagnosed for the first time with breast cancer. She had a mastectomy, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. It was then that the couple drew up a list of things they wanted to do. They travelled everywhere from America to Ireland. “We enjoyed ourselves. We decided to make the most of our time together because you never know how long you have.” In February 2011 Vera started getting breathless and went to the doctors. The diagnosis wasn’t good. The secondary cancer had spread to her ribs, spine and skull.

weekly trips to the Hospice gave Mal a chance to rest. “I would drop her off at the Hospice and then just come home and relax. A friend of ours would take me to lunch, then come with me to collect Vera from the Hospice. It gave me time to myself.” Vera wanted to die at home. “When the moment came it was perfect. She peacefully slipped away as I held her in my arms.” Vera died on October 10, 2011. She was 69. Several months later Mal joined a bereavement group at Cotswold Care Hospice. “I was never one to talk about how I’m feeling. I thought I would go to the first meeting and sit in the corner and not say anything. I thought no one would understand what I was feeling but everyone at the group was the same. It was like a weight had been lifted. Now I have a lot of good friends from that group.

Vera knew about Cotswold Care Hospice because her mother had attended day Hospice. “Vera decided she wanted to go and have a look. She went to day Hospice once a week and she loved it.” During his time in the army, Mal was a field medic and he became Vera’s carer. Her


‘No gifts please – support the Hospice instead’

A Gloucester couple who have made their home in the Caribbean decided that when they tied the knot they would support Cotswold Care Hospice. Louise and Craig James returned to Gloucestershire to get married. In lieu of wedding presents they asked guests make donations to the Hospice. It was the couple’s way of saying thank you for Cotswold Care Hospice supporting Craig’s mum Pat during her battle against lung cancer. They raised £1,642 for the charity. Craig, who was brought up in Tuffley, moved with his parents Graham and Pat to Colethrop near Stroud when he was a teenager.

They decided to return home to marry and tied the knot at Cotswold House Hotel in Chipping Campden. “We thought it would be a more fitting gift to raise money for Cotswold Care Hospice in memory of Pat,” said Louise. “All of our wedding guests thought that it was a fabulous idea and were very generous with their donations, so much so that we exceeded our target.” Craig said: “My family were extremely grateful for the support provided by Cotswold Care Hospice to my Mum, and us, enabling her to be at home during her last days. Without that support I don’t know how we would have coped. “Our wedding ‘gift’ in lieu of presents was our way of saying thank you, not only from us but also all of our friends and family.”

Louise, nee Middleton, grew up in Abbeydale The couple started dating in May 2005 and in July that year Pat was diagnosed with cancer. Cotswold Care Hospice @ Home nurses provided support so that Pat could spend her final days at home. Pat died in 2006, aged 48. Craig and Louise moved to the Turks and Caicos Islands in 2007  when Craig landed his job as an accountant for an offshore investment group. 22.

Are you celebrating a special occasion? Whether it’s a birthday, wedding, christening or anniversary, make your special day extra special by asking friends and family to donate to Cotswold Care Hospice. Contact our fundraising team who can help with ideas and materials you can use to help your celebration go with a bang. Email or phone 01453 733701

Thank you so much See what some of our supporters have been doing to raise money for Cotswold Care Hospice


rother and sister Pip and Guy Mitchell ran 150 miles in five days. They raised almost £11,000 to split between three charities, including Cotswold Care Hospice. They started in Salcombe and finished in their home town of Tetbury. Guy Lamb raised £426 by staging a 24-hour bike ride. Lisa Newton raised £1,500 when she organised an aerobic marathon at Griffin Mill in Stroud.

Cotswold Care Hospice’s own Emma Boxall is running the Bristol Half Marathon to raise money for the Hospice. The British Homing World Show of the Year, donated £1,000 from the proceeds of its 2012 show for home pigeon enthusiasts.

memory of mum,” said Sean. Jess Banks completed her first half-marathon and raised more than £1,600 for Cotswold Care Hospice. She ran in memory of her sister Harrie Banks, featured pages 12-15, who died in January 2012 at the age of 31. Teenager Jordan Schofield did a sponsored walk up Snowdon to raise money in memory of his nan Sue Fowler. The 15-year-old, a student at Katherine Lady Berkeley’s School, was joined by his 10-year-old cousin Sophie and their gran Pamela Fowler. Jordan raised £114 and Sophie raised £100 for Cotswold Care Hospice which looked after Mrs Fowler.

Sean Garland raised £4,500 by trekking along the Great Wall of China. The 41-year-old raised the money in memory of his mother Sheila who was cared for by Cotswold Care Hospice. Sean gave up his job and returned home in 2007 to become his mother’s full-time carer. Sheila died in Sean’s arms on November 17, 2011. Sean now looks after his father. “The trek was important for me as it’s my way to say thank you to the Hospice for looking after mum for more than 15 years and to do it in 23.

Urgent capital appeal Creative therapy space extension

We need your help today

Grey area = existing building

! YES, I would like to help expand Cotswold Care Hospice’s creative therapy space. I would like to make a gift of: £ _________________________________ Your details Title Mr/Mrs/Ms/Miss/other ________ Forename ______________________ Surname ______________________ Address __________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________Postcode________________ Telephone _______________________________________________________________________________________ Email ____________________________________________________________________________________________

Please return this slip, along with your donation to Cotswold Care Hospice, FREEPOST SWC2421, Burleigh Lane, Minchinhampton GL5 2BF. Cheques can be made payable to ‘Cotswold Care Hospice’

Thank you so much for your kindness Donate online at

Your Hospice - June 2013  

Cotswold Care Hospice's magazine - filled with hospice news, upcoming events, patient stories and much, much more.

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