Today is a very exciting day for St Ann’s. The 9th April is a very special date in our history. On this day in 1979, we opened the doors of our second hospice site in Little Hulton, Salford, and started caring for patients there.
The opening was the result of a huge Greater Manchester-wide fundraising appeal, which led to the amazing local community raising a massive £600,000 for the second St Ann’s Hospice site (our Heald Green site had opened in 1971). Her Royal Highness, Princess Anne, came to officially open the Little Hulton hospice in May 1979, and was welcomed by many of our staff, volunteers, patients and families.
We’ll be celebrating in lots of different ways this year, to mark this special 40th anniversary – from tea parties, to fundraising appeals – and we will also be thanking the staff and volunteers who have played such an important part in our history over the years.
St Ann’s is supported by an army of more than 700 fantastic volunteers, and last year 228 of them supported the team in Little Hulton. They gave a massive 20,245 hours of time between them to help our Salford team deliver their services to patients and families, and we can’t thank them enough. The time they all give really is invaluable, and we simply couldn’t carry on caring for local people without their kind support.
We’re proud of our rich heritage. As one of the oldest and largest hospices outside of London, St Ann’s as an organisation will be celebrating our 50th anniversary in 2021, and we’re already planning ahead for some exciting celebrations to mark half a century of specialist care.
Looking back, celebrating and remembering is incredibly important. It’s vital we learn from those who have gone before us, but also that we use those successes and the amazing work that has already been done to help us formulate our plans for the St Ann’s of the future.
Hospice care has changed significantly since we first opened our doors in 1979. As well as providing care from our three hospice sites in Little Hulton, Heald Green and The Neil Cliffe Centre in Wythenshawe Hospital, we also now reach out beyond our walls even further into our local communities. Our teams provide world-class specialist care in the places people call home, and deliver support via a wide range of outreach services. We share our knowledge and expertise with others, delivering training, and endeavouring to ensure that palliative and end of life care is seen as just as important as the care people receive when they are born.
Though hospice care has changed so much since the hospice in Little Hulton first opened, our ethos and values remain the same. I’m proud to be part of a team that is committed to providing truly holistic care, treating each patient as an individual and responding to their own personal needs and wishes. As we look back at what has gone before, and plan ahead to ensure St Ann’s remains fit for future generations of patients and families too, we never lose sight of the core values that make us what we are – respect, professionalism, inclusivity and compassion.
As a charity, we’re certainly shown compassion by the people who support the hospice, helping us raise the £20,000 we need each day to keep our services running. As we celebrate our special anniversary, I’d like to thank everyone in the local community for the support they’ve given the hospice for the four decades since we opened our Little Hulton site. We simply couldn’t care for our patients without your support. Thank you so much for all you do for us.
Happy birthday St Ann’s Little Hulton.