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Over 30 Years of Memories

Families, fundraisers and volunteers, everybody has a memory to share about Eden Valley Hospice and Jigsaw. Whether a loved one was cared for at the hospice or you have taken part in a fundraising event, every day precious memories are created with the support of the local community.

2021 is a special year for the hospice as we celebrate 30 years of care, but our history and memories extend much further than this. The idea to create a hospice in Carlisle began with one woman – Gill Melrose – in the early 1980’s and since then we have created thousands of memories.

In a letter to the hospice Gill explained, “On the 24 September 1986 the first press announcement of the proposed hospice appeared in the Gazette in Carlisle.

“Within days of this release there was a knock on the door. A small bespectacled gentleman. He introduced himself as Mr Tony Crellin from Rotary Carlisle. He had seen the article in the paper and said he thought Rotary would be interested in getting involved.

“Well you can imagine my delight at the prospect of having such a prestigious organisation as Rotary involved. Mr Crellin suggested that I meet Mr Peter Whitley the then chairman of their social committee for that year.”

In the following years fundraising events were hosted, plans established and hundreds of thousands of pounds raised to make the vision of a hospice in Carlisle a reality. Speaking in 2007 Maureen Telford, Peter Whitley’s Secretary at Carrs, explained.

“The date for the launch was the 1 April 1987, again it was held at The Swallow Hilltop Hotel and Martyn Lewis (Newsreader)agreed to be the guest of honour. Maureen spent a lot of time writing to various companies for items to be donated to raise funds. People were very generous and the GPO even donated some 1st day issue stamps.

“Martyn was due to read the news that night at 10pm. Sir Hector Laing gave the loan of his private plane to fly Martyn to Carlisle and back. It had to be ensured that Martyn left the Hilltop before it got dark because Carlisle airport shut down when it got dark.

“Maureen’s over riding memory of the time was when a call came through from Laings the builders, she put the call through to Peter Whitley and shortly afterwards Peter came into her office with tears in his eyes, Laings had donated the land. It was going to be at the old brickworks. It really was going to happen, wonderful.”

In October 1991, Eden Valley Hospice welcomed our first Day Hospice patients and the following year our adult patient opened.

Over the last 3 decades we have cared for thousands of local adults and children with life limiting illnesses and helped to create lots of precious memories.

To help with our anniversary the hospice would like you to share your memories. Whether this is a story, a picture or a video, we want you to share your memories during our special year.

For more information about how to share your memories please click here or email them to communications@edenvalleyhospice.org.

Creating new memories in 2021

During the hospice’s anniversary year, you have the opportunity to create new memories for yourself and local people with life limiting illnesses. Not only will our Trek Nepal and Community Trek create special memories for you and your fellow fundraisers the money you raise will help local families.

Draped along the greatest heights of the Himalaya, Nepal is where the ice-cold of the mountains meets the steamy heat of the Indian plains. The 12 day challenge, from Saturday 9 to Wednesday 20 October 2021, will see fundraisers following the banks of Bhurungdi Khola River, ascending Poonhill for a spectacular sunrise over the Annapurna Massif,Dhawalagiri and enjoying views of the snow-capped peaks of Annapurna and Machhapuchre.

Further information about this amazing 30th Anniversary challenge can be found here or by contacting the Fundraising Team on 01228 810801.