Patients, volunteers and staff from Blythe House Hospicecare got the opportunity to mingle with TV stars during a special day out provided free of charge by a local coach company.

Smiths of Marple offered the Chapel-en-le-Frith hospice free coach travel and entry to the first ever Countryfile Live event in Yorkshire on Thursday 15th August.

Leaflets and an email were distributed amongst patients, staff and volunteers to share the special opportunity, and spaces on the coach filled up within a day!

BBC Countryfile presenters including Matt Baker, John Craven and Ellie Harrison were big hits at the Castle Howard event, alongside outdoor activities including farming in action, rural crafts and the equine arena.

Volunteer, Alex Clark attended the event with her mum, Brenda Edge and auntie, Hilary Hadfield. The three women give their time to support Blythe House shops in Chapel-en-le-Frith and Buxton. Alex said: ‘It really was a wonderful day and we are so lucky to have had the opportunity to go; a huge thank you to Smiths of Marple.’

Anne Hibbs, Secretary at Blythe House, said: ‘A lovely day was had by all and we were very well looked after by our drivers, Tony and Paul. There was a myriad of interesting things to see and do, from maypole and Morris dancing to book signings. The Countryfile team was on top form and very entertaining. There was a great atmosphere and it was very well organised. Thank you so much to Smiths of Marple for such an amazing day.’

Ian Rigg, a volunteer driver, said: ‘My wife and I had a great time. Thankfully the weather was kind to us and there was plenty to occupy our time. A huge thanks for organising it and definitely to Tony for his generosity, as well as to him and Paul for driving!’

Angie Vernon, Managing Directing at Smiths of Marple, commented: ‘We were very pleased to be able to offer our support to Blythe House as it’s a charity close to all our hearts in the High Peak. We hope the hard working volunteers, staff and patients enjoyed their well earnt day out!’

We are so sad to announce that our outdoor cinema event due to take place tonight has been CANCELLED due to severe weather conditions.

The Greatest Showman was set to be shown tonight (Friday 16th August) at Buxton Cricket Club.

This special event raises vital funds for the hospice so having to cancel it is devastating. The safety of our supporters, staff, volunteers and suppliers is our first priority, and this decision has been made due to the severe weather and concern about ground conditions at the venue. We apologise for any inconvenience caused.

If you have booked for the event tonight and would like your donation to be refunded, please contact the Blythe House Hospicecare Fundraising Team on 01298 875089, Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm. If you have any further questions, please contact: events@blythehouse.co.uk.

Hundreds of High Peak people are set to raise more than £16,300 for Blythe House Hospicecare, after taking part in a night-time walk around Buxton.

Blythe House hosted its first ever Glow Twilight Walk on Saturday 20th July. The 10k route started and finished at the Silverlands football ground, taking in Harpur Hill, Soloman’s Temple, Burbage and the town centre.

Almost 300 walkers participated in the event, with support coming from more than 30 local volunteers who helped with tasks including registration, providing medical cover, marshalling the route and handing out refreshments.

Ann Hampson, a former Blythe House patient from Chapel-en-le-Frith who had breast cancer, did the honours of officially starting the walk.

The event was made possible thanks to support and sponsorship from local businesses and organisations including High Peak Marquees, Brimstone Band, Buxton Football Club, High Peak Signs, CrossFit in Buxton, Dutch Maid, Whaley Bridge’s Tesco, Swizzels Matlow, Tomson wholesalers and MVIS.

Karen Heathcote from Wormhill signed up three days before the event alongside three friends. She explained: ‘My husband died two and a half weeks ago, and we had some really fantastic help from Blythe House’s Hospice at Home service so he spent his last week at home. Without the carers, I don’t know how we’d have got through it to be honest; although it was only a short time, their help was just invaluable, it was amazing.’

Sue Gillies, Karen’s friend from Peak Dale, added: ‘Hospice at Home provided night-time sits for my mum in October 2017. She had dementia and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and she wanted to die at home.’

Wendy Taylor took part with a group of friends in memory of their close companion and colleague, Karen who died in May 2019 after her sarcoma cancer diagnosis. Wendy, from Harpur Hill, explained: ‘Karen had a lot of support from Dr Sarah Parnacott [Consultant in Palliative Medicine] from Blythe House. Particularly in her last few weeks, she’d come at whatever time of day Karen needed help. She helped get the family support equipment including a stair lift and a hospital bed and it meant that Karen didn’t have to leave home. It’d be about 8pm, and Dr Parnacott would ring and say “I haven’t forgotten about you, I’m on my way, I’m just with another patient.” That lady cared so much and went to the nth degree.’

Margaret Fell’s mother-in-law accessed Blythe House services before she died in January 2019. Dove Holes resident Margaret said: ‘It’s such a good cause; it’s a great place, and I’d like to give back to people who need it.’

Georgia Clarke from Marple Bridge was joined for the walk by four friends: ‘Each of us have lost someone close to us, and my friend’s dad is living with cancer. The walk gives us chance to get together and have a good laugh.’

Sharon George from Buxton took part alongside five friends in memory of several people, including her dad: ‘We all decided as a group that we’d like to raise some money for charity and so we thought we’d do this! We’ve raised over £400 between us.’

Super early bird entry for next year’s walk on Saturday 18th July 2020 is now open! Register online before Saturday 27th July 2019 for just £5.

Visit Facebook to see a full gallery of Glow Walk photos taken by volunteer photographer, Iain Klieve.

A special book of literary works by High Peak patients with cancer and other life-limiting illnesses has raised over £380 for local hospice care.

Life is a Mish Mash is compiled of short stories, poems and limericks, written by a writing group here at Blythe House Hospicecare.

Dawn Haines, Sam Osborne, Sarah Whiteley, Sue Walmsley and Yvonne Reynolds, started their writing course in September last year, working together over 18 weeks to create a book of their work to raise funds for the hospice.

The book was sold at Blythe House reception and retail outlets across the borough – raising a fantastic £384 for patient care and services.

Julian Cohen, local poet and storyteller, heads up the writing group and said: ‘The group produced some fantastic and very moving poems and stories about their experiences of illness and their fears, but also about their hopes. Some tears were been shed but there was also a lot of laughter and a real determination to get the most out of life, and to help and support each other.

‘On behalf of the group, I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who’s picked up a copy of the book and donated; every penny raised will go towards supporting ongoing patient care here at Blythe House.’

Since our writing groups began at Blythe House back in 2015, they have been incredibly popular with patients who have found that writing can help them to express their thoughts and feelings.

By reading out their work to each other in the group, patients have also shared their ideas. The writing groups have helped patients to stay positive, despite the difficulties they can face.

Find out more about Blythe House services.

A Buxton resident’s birthday barn dance has raised over £9,000 for local patients with cancer and other life-limiting illnesses.

Julie Fletcher, who has secondary breast cancer, held a ‘Party in the Barn’ in Combs last month, to celebrate her 50th Birthday.

Julie’s been attending Blythe House Hospicecare in Chapel-en-Le-Frith since the beginning of 2019, accessing care and support including education for health and wellbeing, complementary therapies, counselling and physiotherapy.

Julie said: ‘I was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2013; unfortunately in 2017 it had spread to my liver; after surgery to remove the tumour it returned once again in 2018 to multiple sections of my liver and my bones. I have been undergoing different treatments, each one offering their challenges and currently I am on chemotherapy to shrink the numerous tumours in my liver.

‘I try to live a normal life as possible and recently Blythe House have helped me through some of the most difficult times of my life. Blythe House is a safe environment to go and express yourself in any way you feel. I look forward to Wednesdays and have made many new friends in the process.’

‘I wanted to do something worthwhile to celebrate my big 5-0 and raise vital funds for a place very close to my heart and many in the community’.

The ‘Party in the Barn’ was a huge success supported by Julie’s friends and family, with local businesses providing products and services like refreshments and entertainment. Other organisations and guests gave money on the night and via Julie’s Facebook donations page.

Julie said; ‘We had a fantastic night, made even better by the fact so much money was raised for Blythe House. I’d like to thank everybody who helped to make a dream become reality.

‘Many people gave up their free time to help organise and prepare the barn for the night. I can’t thank them enough: Rosie and Sam Barrett for the use of the barn, Jason Hobson for all your hard work in sorting the lighting, Jonathan Smith for going over and above with prepping the barn and staying all night to serve the hog roast, and Mac Burnham Butchers for donating all the burgers and sausages; they were scrummy. Paul Hardy for supplying the biggest hog roast I’ve ever seen, Amy Longdon and Ben Hammer for supplying the very well stocked and organised bar, and to both Paul and Amy for donating all their profits to the event. Retronovas Band, DJ Chris Pearson and Middle of the Road duo for donating their time to play at the party.

‘Thank you so much to everyone who helped to make this remarkable night as memorable as possible by providing services and gifts in kind.’

To name just a few of the local organisations who supported the event:
A & S Bearings, Buxton
Biggin Hall, Biggin By Hartington
Buxton and High Peak Golf club
Buxton Opera House
Buxton Water
Care for Feet, Chapel-en-le-Frith and Buxton
Cask and Kitchen, Glossop
Chapel-en-le-Frith Leisure Centre
Damian Currington Electrical
Decanta by Dowds, Glossop
Federal Mogul Friction Products
First Impressions
Harvey Leonards, Glossop
Hayloft Beauty, Glossop
Jack Massey fight tickets
Lasting Impressions, Buxton
Lounge 41, Buxton
Napoli Italian Restaurant, Glossop
Paper Mill Inn, Chinley
Staden Nursery, Buxton
The Italian, Glossop
The Oakwood, Glossop
The Queens Pub, Glossop
…And many, many more!

You can still donate to Julie’s fundraising via her Just Giving page.

Last year’s Mayor of the High Peak has visited Blythe House to hand over a cheque worth £530 for patient care and services.

Blythe House was one of Linda Grooby’s chosen charities whilst she was the mayor of the borough for 2018/19.

To raise money throughout the year, Linda asked for donations in lieu of Christmas cards, and held fundraising events including a civic ball with a raffle, and several civic meetings.

The funding will go directly towards influencing patient care here at Blythe House – £530 could pay for more than 30 hours of nighttime care for a local patient who wishes to remain in the comfort of his or her own home at the end of their life.

Pictured: Linda Grooby, Buxton North and East division and Cote Heath Ward Councillor, hands over the cheque to and Becka White, Blythe House Fundraising and Communications Assistant.

Blythe House patients, staff and volunteers are coming together to create a special wall hanging to commemorate the hospice’s 30th anniversary this year.

Around 17 people are taking part in hand stitching and sewing the unique artwork alongside local textile artist, Anne Humberstone.

Anne explained: ‘I applied to be a volunteer in the creative art area at Blythe House and a few weeks later, Catherine Serjeant [Creative Arts Coordinator] contacted me and said there was a project in the wings that she thought I’d be very interested in, so I have been managing the group since its inception.

‘We held an initial meeting in March to discuss ideas and get a plan together for the design. Once we had a plan in place, the group was divided up into three, working on different sections of the wall hanging. People then met at different group members’ homes whilst they got on with the work, and we’ve now started to come together again at Blythe House, to review progress and discuss what else needs to be done.’

Group participants have been really enjoying the project so far. The following five ladies have all been supported by Blythe House following breast cancer diagnoses:

Stephanie Lund said: ‘Many of the people that are helping with the project were all in the same Living Well service group and we’ve remained good friends. We used to do creative arts when we came; I made a few things I was really proud of and it helped to take your mind off things.’

Ros Edwards commented: ‘We all got together to discuss what we wanted on the wall hanging, including symbols like balloons, rainbow, sunshine and sunflowers. We also wanted words and quotes sewn into the different panels, and used the Blythe House logo colours.’

Tracey Furness added: ‘Blythe House gave us the opportunity to talk to others in similar situations and share our experiences.’

Shelia Rawcliffe said: ‘When I first walked in to Blythe House it was like an embrace; the staff and volunteers took me under their wing – it was a lifeline. It has been a real privilege to meet everyone.’

Maureen Brierley added: ‘I’d undergone a mastectomy and felt so very sad in hospital when a nurse came to see me. She said “you need some TLC!” and a while later came back with a leaflet for Blythe House. This place is so special, it is a haven – it was a day I could come and completely not worry about anything. I learnt skills I never knew I had, and thoroughly enjoyed the meditation and complimentary therapies. I continue to meet up with lifelong friends that I have made as a result of coming to Blythe House; we go out for meals together and that’s why I decided to get involved in this project too.’

Sue Hartley attends Blythe House after her metastasized papillary thyroid cancer diagnosis. She said: ‘I personally can’t thank Blythe House enough for what it has given me as a service user. It is a warm and welcoming place that can tailor its services to whatever you might need at the time. I got involved with this project as I wanted to have something here that I can say “yes I did that!” in the future.’

Sam Osborne said: ‘When I first came to Blythe House I was very nervous and felt so alone. As I walked through the doors to the main lounge I was welcomed by so many people. Many of the staff and volunteers came over to speak to me. A few months later I joined the writing group and got to know even more people. The writing group has now finished but we are still meeting up every fortnight. Without this my life would be so different. I have been able to use the confidence gained in my writing to write a poem for the wall hanging. This poem explains how many of us feel about Blythe House.’

The group hopes to have the wall hanging finished and in place in the main lounge at Blythe House by the early autumn, where an unveiling ceremony will take place.

Popping tips and loose change in collection pots at a Chapel-en-le-Frith garage has raised over £837 for local patients with cancer and other life-limiting illnesses.

Rob Kenyon MOT and Servicing Centre on Bowden Hey Road has displayed yellow Blythe House collection pots in its reception area since July 2015.

During that time, the garage has raised an amazing amount of money to provide free care and services to local patients, their families and carers.

Rob Kenyon said: ‘We collect our tips, and if someone needs a new bulb or other small item for their vehicle, we give it to them for free but suggest that they put the equivalent amount as a donation in the collection pot. We’re really pleased to have raised a fantastic amount for a worthy local charity.’

To find out more about displaying a collection pot in your business or organisation, email: info@blythehouse.co.uk.

Photo (L-R): Blythe House’s Jessica McHale with Kurt Badura, Rob Kenyon and Rob Goodwin

A group of local artists is celebrating after hosting a successful open arts event, and raising £290 for Blythe House Hospicecare.

Peak Vision Arts is a new group of artists living and working around Chapel-en-le-Frith. Photographer, Lynne McPeake; 2D mixed media artist, Ingrid Katarina Karlsson; jeweller, Yuka Jourdain; ‘The Peak Potter,’ Louise Neilson; Julia Brownsword, a 3D mixed media artist, and illustrator, Elizabeth Challinor, make up the creative team.

They took part in the 13th annual Derbyshire Open Arts festival during the Spring Bank Holiday weekend, showcasing and selling their work at the town’s Scout Hut.

With dedicated family and friends baking sweet treats and managing a small café during the weekend, the group raised almost £300 for Blythe House patients and carers.

Derbyshire Open Arts gives artists and crafts people the opportunity to open their studios to the public or exhibit with others in a combined venue such as a village hall or art gallery. It gives visitors an opportunity to see the breadth of art that is created in Derbyshire, to meet the creators and to purchase or commission works direct from the maker. This event showed the wealth of talent on our doorstep in Chapel-en-le-Frith.

Last year, over 250 artists and craftspeople took part; selling and exhibiting work in many different venues countywide.

Find out more about Peak Vision Arts by visiting the group’s social media channels:

Photo L-R: Elizabeth, Louise, Lynne, Yuka, Ingrid and Julia with Jess McHale from Blythe House Hospicecare

The driving rain and freezing winds didn’t stop hardy golfers from enjoying a friendly competition in Buxton to raise funds for a local hospice.

Blythe House Hospicecare hosted a golf day at Buxton and High Peak Golf Club on Friday 7th June, raising £4,712. This fantastic amount will pay for 31 nights of home care for local patients at the end of their life, enabling them to stay in their comforting surroundings, with their loved ones close by.

Players came from across the High Peak including Buxton, New Mills and Chapel-en-le-Frith, alongside many who travelled further afield from Staffordshire and Yorkshire.

There were five prizes up for grabs, with competition winners James Bowm and Steve Clark from Unite the Union visiting from Stocksbridge.

Becca Gregory, events coordinator at Blythe House, said: ‘

We would like to say a huge thank you to all of the local companies that sponsored golf tees, donated prizes and gave bottles for the tombola.

‘Special thanks also go to Buxton and High Peak Golf Club and its members who put so much time into making the day a success, and of course the players themselves. The weather was atrocious but that didn’t stop the resilient bunch enjoying their day, whilst helping to raise a brilliant amount of money for patients with cancer and other life-limiting illnesses in the High Peak and beyond.’

Find out how you can support Blythe House Hospicecare.

Feature photo: Winners James Bowm and Steve Clark accept their prize from Tim Mourne, Blythe House’s Chairman of Trustees.