The streets of Buxton were glowing as over 100 people got together to raise over £6,000 for local hospice care.

The Glow Twilight Walk returned to the town on Saturday 14th May, following a two year hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Hospice supporters wore neon tutus, glow sticks and light up headbands to set the night alight on the 10k circular walk taking in the town centre, the market place, Harpur Hill and Burbage.

Buxton resident, Lisa, was taking part alongside her friends, who had nicknamed themselves the ‘Walkie Talkies.’ She said: ‘We are so excited to be here for a good Saturday night out, helping to raise money for a great local cause.’

Lucy’s dad, Gary, is currently receiving care and support from the hospice following his diagnosis of early on-set dementia.

Lucy, who is also from Buxton, explained: ‘Dad has amazing support including physio and complementary therapies, and one-to-one sessions where he can chat about his diagnosis, talk about his worries, and get advice. My mum and I have also benefited from services at the hospice. It’s a cause close to our hearts and we wanted to do something together as a family to support it.’

Rachael Gee, fundraising and events coordinator at Blythe House and Helen’s Trust, organised the event. She said: ‘I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who supported the Glow Twilight Walk in any way – including amazing volunteers, local businesses and of course, the participants. We hope you had a fantastic night – it was so good to all be together again, and we were able to raise an incredible amount of money to support hospice care across our local communities.’

The money raised will support people across the High Peak, Hope Valley, Derbyshire Dales and North East Derbyshire who are affected by life-limiting illness and bereavement.

Next year’s Glow Twilight Walk is confirmed to take place on Saturday 10th June. Super early bird registration is now open, where you can sign up for just £5.

Sign up before before Saturday 28th May 2022 to pay just £5.

Make a donation to celebrate the life of someone that you love and miss, and help to support local hospice care.

For a minimum donation of just £10, you can dedicate a virtual sunflower in our online hospice garden, and add photographs and a message of remembrance. A sunflower plaque bearing your loved one’s name will also be planted in our hospice garden on Eccles Fold in Chapel-en-le-Frith.

You will be warmly invited to our Celebration of Life event on Saturday 2nd July. The event will be held at the hospice, to give you the opportunity to recall fond memories of the person that you miss, and find their sunflower plaque in our garden. You will also be able to enjoy live music, a sunflower pebble-painting workshop and refreshments.

Dedicate a sunflower today.

Your kind Sunflower Memories donation will go a long way in supporting people across our communities who wish to remain in the safe and recognisable surroundings of their own home as they near the end of their lives.

Sarah Della Cioppa’s beloved father, Paul McKenna, who had multiple myeloma (a type of bone marrow cancer), was cared for by our Hospice at Home team before he very sadly died in March 2020.

Sarah, from Buxton, said: ‘We cared for my Dad at home during his final weeks. This meant that he got to spend more time with his immediate family, and stay out of hospital where no visitors were allowed due to Covid.

‘The hospice supported my family by offering healthcare assistants to sit with my dad overnight. Knowing that he was in safe hands allowed my family to get some much-needed rest.

‘I am so happy to support the Sunflower Memories appeal – to plant a sunflower in memory of my dear Dad, and to help Blythe House and Helen’s Trust to continue its incredible work to support other families in the way that it did mine.’

 

 

After a nursing career spanning more than 40 years, Janet Dunphy, Blythe House Hospicecare and Helen’s Trust CEO, is retiring.

Janet has been at the helm here at Blythe House and Helen’s Trust since 2015, after dedicating her working life to nursing, with 34 of those years in palliative and end of life care.

In her seven years here at the hospice, Janet has overseen a number of prominent and exciting changes to local hospice services.

Janet directed the inception of our hugely successful Hospice at Home service, which has provided over 76,000 hours of care since it began in 2016. The service sees healthcare assistants provide day and night-time care across the local community to patients who wish to die in the comfort of their own home.

Complementing Hospice at Home is the award-winning Community Volunteer programme, which Janet spearheaded from the start, seeing volunteers support patients and their families with tasks including  shopping, running errands, gardening, dog walking, or simply ‘being there’ so a family member can rest.

In recent years, Janet has managed the revamp of hospice services to ensure as many local people as possible are able to access care and support when they need it; the renovation of our hospice building to make it more accessible to patients and visitors; and the thriving partnership with fellow end of life care charity, Helen’s Trust.

Janet said: ‘I want to say a huge and sincere thank you to everyone that I’ve had the pleasure of knowing and working with here at Blythe House and Helen’s Trust. It is an honour and a privilege to look back on my time here, and to see everything that we have been able to achieve together. I am so very grateful to have ended my long and fulfilling career at a place where everyone cares so much, and is working towards the same, shared goal.

‘I want to acknowledge Tim Mourne, chairman of the board of trustees, and all the trustees who govern this ship. It is no easy task; it takes lots of time, wisdom, skill and compassion. Nothing would happen without them and we certainly would not be as safe as we are in these difficult times. It is a massive responsibility, and they work tirelessly.

‘To our volunteers, I want to say that whatever your role, without you we would not have achieved what we have during my tenure, indeed we wouldn’t even be here at all.  You were my reassurance throughout. You chose to build and maintain your local hospice, you know how much it is needed, and I know you will carry on making sure that it continues as the safe place in your community, for anyone diagnosed with, or affected by, life-limiting illness.’

Shane O’Reilly will become the hospice’s new CEO on Monday 2nd May. Shane joined the hospice in 2020 as clinical services manager, after spending more than 18 years as a senior NHS physiotherapist with special interests in motor neurone disease and respiratory conditions including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

Shane said: ‘I am delighted to be appointed to the chief executive role and I am looking forward to building upon the hospice’s commendable history, and its outstanding reputation both locally and nationally.

‘Within the last year, we have seen a huge rise in the demand for our services, and we are proud to have met and exceeded those challenges. In the future, I am looking forward to continuing this incredible work alongside dedicated staff and volunteers, delivering the care that we know is so very needed in our rural communities.

‘My sincere thanks to everyone who volunteers for the hospice or supports us in any way. We would not be here without you and I am personally so very grateful for your time, commitment and support.’

Janet concluded: ‘I leave Blythe House and Helen’s Trust in a very good place, clinically and financially and in very safe hands as Shane O’Reilly takes over. I’m proud to hand over to him, I know how much he cares and how talented he is. I have every confidence that Shane’s knowledge, passion, strength and commitment will take you into yet another exciting phase of success.’

We wish Janet all the very best for her retirement and thank her sincerely for her many years of devoted service to people affected by life-limiting illness.

It is with sadness and immense gratitude that we announce the resignation of Helen’s Trust Founder, Dr Louise Jordan, as Deputy Chair of the Board of Trustees. We thank Louise for her enormous contribution to the end of life care services available to the people of North Derbyshire through her hard work and dedication to Helen’s Trust, and for the last 2 years, Blythe House Hospicecare. Dr Jordan has shared the following message on her resignation:

Dear friends and supporters.

I am so proud to be a founding trustee of Helen’s Trust.

Back in 2001 a few friends gathered to remember Helen Louse Lyon who, due to exceptional circumstances, was able to stay in her own home and have a peaceful and dignified death. Being able to stay and die in your own home was not so easy then, so the simple goal was to set up a charity in her memory to enable other’s to have the same choice that Helen had. Fortunately, the national picture has changed over the last two decades and the importance of being able to die at home has now been recognised. Not only is it, in the majority of patients, what the individual wishes for but also it allows friends and family to have a  far healthier bereavement. The benefits of being able to die at home make sense to the individual, the family, the community and the financial purse.

Initially we all met around a coffee table and as the charity grew were gifted use of a room and then rented some larger rooms. The charity went from helping people just at Baslow Health Centre to helping anyone in the north of the county of Derbyshire.

Our aspiration was to employ our own trained carers but found too many barriers to doing this for our size. Blythe House started to develop a similar service in 2016 with the benefits of training their own carers, under the watchful eyes of Janet Dunphy and Ruth Brown. It became increasingly obvious that working together we would be stronger, more efficient and be able to help more and more people. This has been an incredibly successful partnership entered into in 2020.

Deciding to resign from the board of trustees has been one of the most difficult things I have had to do. Unfortunately, I have a neurological condition that significantly impacts on my ability to speak. My voice has always been strong, passionate, and loud at events, presentations, and board meetings…maybe too loud I hear some of you say! Despite the patience of my fellow trustees and the kindness of the employed staff at Blythe House and Helen’s Trust I find I can no longer contribute in a meaningful way.

I will always support Helen’s Trust and feel very confident that, in partnership with Blythe House, it is on a very sound footing and in very capable hands.

With all best wishes

Dr Louise Jordan

Chair of Helen’s Trust 2001 – 2020

Deputy Chair of Blythe House Hospicecare & Helen’s Trust 2020 to 2022

Today marks one year since we cut the ribbon to our new charity shop in Bakewell located on Matlock Street and with that we have opened the doors to enthusiastic volunteers who support us in raising essential funds for our services.

The popular high street store, alongside our four other stores, are responsible for bringing in over a quarter of the money needed for the charity to provide free care and services to local patients and families.

With new volunteers come new stories and for Bakewell volunteers, Denise and Jane, they found a new friendship. These two lovely volunteers found kindred spirits in one another when they chose to volunteer soon after the shop opening.

Denise and Jane started volunteering together on a Wednesday morning in the shop. It soon became apparent that they had a lot in common. Both retired teachers and both looking for that much needed structure in their day to day lives which their professions had provided.

Denise commented: ‘I am very much a free spirit and have travelled all over the world teaching in multiple countries, but I was reaching a point in my life where I knew I needed to settle and take things a little easier. The pandemic hit and before I knew it my travels came to a grinding halt. I am a true believer that everything happens for a reason and for me this was a chance to take stock and redirect my energy in a different way.

‘I had enquired to volunteer for Helen’s Trust a few years back, but I wasn’t too sure at the time what volunteering role I could commit to. When the Bakewell shop opened I saw it as a sign that I could try again, and this time I found a new passion. I have gained so many skills from working in the shop; from feeling empowered to be creative in my shop displays to learning how to research special donated items that we received in the shop to sell.

‘I thought when my travels stopped that the unique stories and interesting people I got to meet along the way would go amiss. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. My favourite part of volunteering is interacting with the customers. Each and every one of them has a story to tell, and I see the very best in humanity through them.

‘I absolutely love working with Jane who has become a good friend since we started working together. We have so many laughs!’

Jane began her volunteering journey at a similar time to Denise and found that taking herself out of her comfort zone has given her a new purpose in her retirement.

Jane said ‘I’m originally from Liverpool and retired from teaching Spanish and French in July 2020. I live in Bradwell, Hope Valley, with my husband Andrew who retired as a lawyer in the first lockdown of 2020. I started volunteering in May last year. I love retirement, but I also love a little routine in my life. I started volunteering at Bakewell shop on a Wednesday morning, but Denise and I enjoyed working together so much that we decided to extend our day to a full day- we love meeting new people and getting to know our regulars so feel free to pop into the shop and say hello to us!

‘Advice for volunteering would be, go ahead and try it. It is such an enjoyable, worthwhile thing to do. You meet great people, and the rewarding feeling of supporting a local charity like Helen’s Trust can feel so impactful to your overall well-being.

‘I have been so impressed with how the shop and charity is regarded among the general public. They love the premises, and have great respect for the work that takes place. They support the charity with enthusiasm, and that rubs off on the people who work there, who I hope reflect that enthusiasm and commitment.

‘Denise and I have great fun on Wednesdays, we both look forward to it, and have forged a real friendship. It’s great to feel I’m helping in some way, it’s important to look out beyond yourself and what can easily become a “cosy” existence in retirement.’

Find out more about volunteering in our hospice shops in Bakewell, Buxton, Chapel-en-le-Frith, New Mills and Whaley Bridge.

Do you fancy committing to a New Years’ Resolution that isn’t going to go straight out of the window by the 7th of January?

We’re looking for local people to support Blythe House Hospicecare and Helen’s Trust by taking on a fitness challenge and helping to raise vital funds for our much-needed services.

Sarah Denwood raised an incredible £1,250 for local hospice care by running over 870 miles to complete the Lands’ End to John O’Groats Virtual Challenge throughout 2021.

The Chapel-en-le-Frith resident said: ‘I am very aware of the services that the hospice provides and know many people that have benefitted from them. I’ve never been a runner and always hated it; even hiding on the cross-country route at school so I didn’t have to do the whole run.

‘During lockdown I was challenged to do a 5km run for the NHS and from then on, I’ve enjoyed it. As the months have gone by I’ve done more running and have increased my pace and distance, so as a challenge for myself I signed up to do a virtual run from Lands’ End to John O’Groats to raise money for the hospice.’

Scott Beswick from Buxton smashed his fundraising target when he took on the London Marathon last year. He raised over £2,347 for hospice services that supported his mother-in-law, Julie when she was diagnosed with breast cancer.

He previously explained: ‘Amidst the constant stream of appointments and intense treatment here, there and everywhere, Blythe House supported Julie and our family from her very first meeting; providing her with weekly day-care services including activities, complementary therapies, and opportunities to meet others who share similar experiences, as well as practical help and advice.

‘To thank Blythe House for everything they have done and continue to do for Julie, our family and other families similar to ours, I want to put myself out there and complete the biggest challenge of my life whilst raising vital funds for the charity.’

Remember! You don’t need to undertake a running challenge to support Blythe House and Helen’s Trust services – here are just a few ideas for other fitness initiatives you could take on in the name of hospice care:

  • Bike ride
  • Climb a mountain… or mountains with an event like the Three Peaks Challenge!
  • Dance competition
  • Muddy obstacle event e.g. Tough Mudder or X-Runner
  • Sponsored walk
  • Sporting tournament
  • Swimathon
  • Tri/ duathlon

Find out more about how you could support your local hospice with a fitness challenge to see in 2022 with all the very best intentions for both yourself and your local community, by visiting our website:  www.blythehousehospice.org.uk/support-us/individuals-and-groups

There, you can read a digital copy of our supporter pack, or request a printed copy by contacting the fundraising team on 01298 815 388 or by emailing: fundraising@blythehouse.co.uk

Teddy bears donated to Blythe House and Helen’s Trust are helping local children affected by grief and bereavement.

Derbyshire Freemasons kindly gave the Teddies for Loving Care (TLC) to Blythe House Hospicecare and Helen’s Trust, which supports children and young people with counselling and play therapy.

The TLC initiative was founded by the national Freemasons where millions of bears have been given to hospital A&E departments to help comfort children and teenagers.

Neil Tomlinson, Derbyshire Freemasons TLC coordinator (photographed alongside Angela Salisbury from the hospice team), recently visited the hospice to present the teddy bears.

The different coloured cuddly toys are now being used by counsellors at the hospice to support children who have experienced the death of a loved one.

Rachel Leech, children and young people’s counsellor at Blythe House, said: ‘In one instance, I asked a child to pick the colour that reminded them of their mummy, and with another child, the teddy bear was focused on what colour they needed. The bears are such a special addition to the range of resources I use during my sessions with children aged four to 18, who are finding it difficult to come to terms with the illness or loss of someone close to them.’

The teddy bears are set to be used at an upcoming family Christmas event, open to children who have experienced loss, and their families. There will be festive crafts and a chance to decorate a special memory candle holder.

Rachel explained: ‘The event will be an opportunity for local children to come together to make friends with others who are in a similar situation, and remember their loved ones at Christmas, which is usually a tough time of year for anyone who is bereaved.’

The family Christmas event is taking place at Blythe House Hospicecare on Eccles Fold, Chapel-en-le-Frith from 4 to 6pm on Friday 10th December. Any child in the local community who has experienced the death of someone they love is welcome to attend.

Find out more.

The 2021 Helen’s Trust Chatsworth 10k, sponsored by BRM Solicitors, was the first of many fundraising events that was continued since the merger. Held within the Chatsworth Estate on Sunday 12th September, the fundraising event welcomed over 900 runners across the 10k and 3k races.

It was a day full of positivity and team spirit, with runners Derbyshire and beyond coming to take on the challenging and picturesque 10k route. The event raised a staggering £33,500 which can pay for 50 bereaved children to individually access a 12 week course of specialist counselling so they can learn how to cope with their loss. Many runner’s sponsorship contributed to the total raised – with one individual, Tracey Howard, raising an incredible £3,820 on her own!

Becca Gregory our Fundraising and Communications Manager, said; ‘We are delighted that the Chatsworth 10k was able to make a return this year, following the cancellation of the 2020 event due to Covid-19, and it was an amazing atmosphere on the day. I would like to thank the local businesses whose contributions made a huge difference to the amount of money we were able to raise for the charity; whether it was through sponsorship or donation of services. The event was also supported by many incredible volunteers who marshalled the course, registered runners and aided traffic management, and without them the Chatsworth 10k wouldn’t happen.’

Fairfield Builders Supplies, Buxton & Studio10 Kitchens, Bakewell sponsored the kilometre markers, Holdsworth Foods & Morrisons Buxton donated over 1000 cereal bars for the runners and Buxton Water donated all of the water for the event.

The 10k, chip timed, course is particularly spectacular, set within the impressive Chatsworth Estate. The sun was shining and the Duchess of Devonshire was in attendance to hand out medals and cheer runners across the finish line.

The 2022 Chatsworth 10k will be held Sunday 18th September- registration will open in the new year.

To check out up and coming festive events for Blythe House Hospicecare and Helen’s Trust visit our events page

We have recently welcomed two new members to the Hospice at Home team, due to increasing need and the successful development of our Hospice at Home service.

Emily Downs (Hospice at Home Senior Nurse) and Penny Ellis (Hospice at Home Nurse) will work with the team to support patients to die at home with their loved ones beside them. They will use their clinical expertise to assess the patients’ needs and liaise with other services and organisations to enable the highest quality care.

Here they explain about their careers to date and more about their new roles…

Emily Downs – Hospice at Home Senior Nurse

What attracted you to apply for the role for hospice at home nurse?
Having worked locally in Disley for the last couple of years, I had become familiar with Blythe House and the service provided by Hospice at Home. I had been so impressed by the care provided and also the fantastic reputation it had in its locally that as soon as I saw the Job advertised on Facebook I was instantly interested. Looking at the role in more detail, I felt that my experience in both working in a community setting and providing End of Life care would be well suited to the role.

Tell us a little bit about your career to date…
I qualified from Sheffield Hallam University in 2014, throughout my training I knew that my vocation was working within the community, caring for people in the comfort of their own home. So from University I went straight into community nursing, I worked for a number of years in both Tameside and East Cheshire. I grew in confidence and knowledge over this time, having many good learning experiences. Also having the support and mentor of many great and experienced nursing colleagues. In 2018 I then applied to do an Advanced Diploma in Specialist Community Practice at Chester University. From this I went to be District Nurse caseload holder, managing a caseload in Disley with a small team. This involved in both the planning and delivery of care for patients with varying needs. A predominant part of the role was caring for those approaching end of life, I have always felt this is a privileged and trusted position being able to provide care and support in some of the most difficult circumstances.

So far, what have you found that you enjoy most about working at Blythe House?
Since arriving at Blythe House, we have had a very warm welcome from all the team. It is clear to see that everyone working here at Blythe House has a shared passion and commitment to supporting those with palliative and life limiting illness and their families. It is evident that the care that is provided here is individualised with the patient/family’s needs central to support given. I am excited to join a team which has such enthusiasm and commitment to this.

What are you most looking forward to about your role at the hospice?
I am looking forward to getting to know the fantastic team of HCA’s which are essential for the Hospice at Home service. I’m excited to see how my current skills and experience can be utilized- further growing and developing the Hospice at Home service.

Penny Ellis Hospice at Home Nurse

What attracted you to apply for the role for hospice at home nurse?
I have always enjoyed working within the field of Palliative & End of Life nursing and I value the importance of providing the very best care for patients who choose to die in their own homes.

Tell us a little bit about your career to date…
I qualified in March 1998 and started my working life at Macclesfield Hospital working on the general medical wards before moving onto orthopedic surgery. I further progressed into bed manager and clinical coordinator role which enabled me to gain many different nursing and managerial skills. 7 years ago I moved into the area of district nursing to further develop my skills and thoroughly enjoyed caring for palliative and end of life patients. My last position was that of practice nurse whereby I gained further skills, but can honestly say I missed caring for patients with life limiting illness.

So far, what have you found that you enjoy most about working at Blythe House?
Since starting at Blythe House at the beginning of August I have been welcomed into the team and it is clear to see the staff are very passionate about their roles. I have had the opportunity to meet most staff and also some of the volunteers that very kindly give their time to the charity.

What are you most looking forward to about your role at the hospice?
The Hospice at Home service is already providing individualised care to patients in their own homes. With the development of my role I can further provide an extensive assessment of each patients needs when first referred into the service and develop individualised care plans. I am very much looking forward to working alongside other professionals at Blythe House to deliver the very best care and support to patients and their families with life limiting illness.

Find out more about our Hospice at Home service.

Squadron Leader Nick Critchell, Red 3 of the Red Arrows team talks to Blythe House Hospicecare and Helen’s Trust about his generous donation of a rare piece of RED Arrows memorabilia.

Tell us a little bit about your career so far in the RAF?

I joined the RAF back in 2008 after studying aerospace business systems at Salford University. I completed my training at RAF Valley having flown the Grob Tutor, Tucano and Hawk T1. I was then posted to the Typhoon FGR4, serving on 1(F) and II(AC) Squadrons at both RAF Leuchars and RAF Lossiemouth. During my three-year tour, I was deployed to the Falkland Islands and conducted air policing operations on both UK Quick Reaction Alert and in the Baltic as well as participating in multinational exercises that included Ex Red Flag at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada. Then in 2016 I was posted to the RAF Valley as a Qualified Flying Instructor on the Hawk T2 aircraft.

How does it feel being part of the Red arrows team?

It’s a fantastic privilege to represent the UK, MOD and RAF across the world. The Hawk T1 is like the classic sports car of the RAF’s fast jet aircraft and it’s a boyhood dream to be able to don the red suit and fly such a British icon. Being part of the next generation is a real honour.

What do you enjoy the most about being part of the team? 

I feel so lucky to be a part of the Red Arrows team, this year being able to fly once more and meet the large fan base who hold the team in such high regard makes it even more special to be RED 3.

What is your favourite flying manoeuvre to fly?

Enid (Reds 1-5) fly a manoeuvre called ‘Rollbacks’ during the second half of the display. This is my favourite as it is one of the most dynamic manoeuvres we fly as the front 5 where we roll over the top of the aircraft next to us, changing formation position.

Where is the most exciting place that the suit has flown?

I wore the suit during the Paris and London flypasts where the Red Arrows flew with the French display team, the Patrouille de France for the French president and our Prime Minister, Boris Johnson. It was also worn during displays in Finland and Guernsey.

Pictured both teams over London’s landmarks. Image by Dave Jenkins.

What made you choose Blythe House Hospicecare and Helen’s Trust to be the recipients of the suit?

When I decided to donate my 2020 suit, Blythe House Hospicecare and Helen’s Trust was my first choice of charity. They have done so much during lockdown to support their local community. I also saw how a friend of my family, Caroline Morgan, received a lot of support from Blythe House Hospice when her husband, Dean, was diagnosed with terminal cancer. The support included counselling for her and her two boys who were just 3 and 6 years old. I just hope that this donated suit will generate funds and help Blythe House Hospicecare & Helen’s Trust continue to provide outstanding end of life care.

Trivia about the Red Arrows Team

  1. The first official Red Arrows display was on May 6, 1965 at Little Rissington.
  2. The first public Red Arrows display was on May 9, 1965 at Clermont Ferrand, France.
  3. The first female Red Arrow pilot was announced in 2010 – Flt Lt Kirsty Moore.
  4. The Red Arrows engine is a Rolls-Royce Mk 151 and it can reach speeds of up to 645 mph at sea level
  5. The formation the pilots fly in is always the same.
  6. When in flight, the Red Arrow pilot’s body weight can be six times lighter than usual.
  7. In 1968 – when the team increased from seven to nine – the Red Arrow’s diamond-shaped flying formation, the Diamond Nine, became iconic and was registered as an official trademark.
  8. There are three types of display the pilots can perform, weather permitting – the Full Display, the Rolling Display and the Flat Display.
  9. ​​Every year, three pilots are changed, so there is always three first year pilots, three second year pilots and three final year pilots.
  10. The Red Arrows display has taken place in more than 50 countries around the world.

If you would like to be in with a chance of winning a rare piece of Red Arrows Memorabilia go to https://blythehousehospice.org.uk/redarrowsraffle/