WITH work on Marie Curie’s new hospice well under way, the Solihull News visited the site to see what locals could expect from the £7million centre.
The new hospice, off Marsh Lane, will replace the 100 year-old current centre in Warwick Road which has been providing free care to terminally ill patients and their families for over 45 years.
Simon Whelan, project manager, said it would be a huge improvement to staff who currently had to work “in such cramped conditions, in such a horrible old building.
“It doesn’t decry the fantastic work that the nurses do but the building lets them down. To see what we will have in nine months compared to what they’ve got there, is going to be superb.”
The centre will provide 24 single, en-suite rooms to allow privacy and dignity for patients who must share rooms at the current site.
It will have more rooms for counselling, complementary therapies and group activities with an expanded day-therapy unit for out-patients as well as a cafe and six acres of landscaped gardens.
Rachel Knighton, Marie Curie hospice ward manager, said: “It’s a really exciting time for me and my staff. It’s going to mean a lot of changes... from a potential patients’ point of view, it’s going to be fantastic. We’re certainly looking forward to much more facilities and a lot more in the way of room. Can’t wait to move in really.”
The massive fundraising effort is currently on target to reach the £7million target with events such as a Grand Canyon Trek, Blooming Great Tea Party and cycle to Amsterdam all planned for this year.
“We want to help hundreds and thousands more people receive the end of life care that Marie Curie’s so famous for,” said Noel Cramer, director of capital appeals. “We really tried to knock the door of everybody in the community who may be able to help us.
“We’re very, very lucky...we’re where we want to be despite the difficult environment and economic conditions.”
To donate, visit www.mariecurie.org.uk.