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19th Jan, 2022

Major St Richard's Hospice revamp moves a step closer

Malvern Editorial 1st Sep, 2017

A MAJOR £5.3million revamp of a much-loved county hospice has moved a step closer after planning chiefs gave the green light to the plans.

Councillors on Worcester City Council’s planning committee backed the plans for a major expansion of St Richard’s Hospice’s Wildwood Drive home.

The redeveloped and extended building will include a re-configured reception area; larger rooms suitable for exercise based groups, a occupational therapy kitchen; more rooms for counselling; complementary therapy, music, horticultural and art therapy plus a spacious social and eating area.

Staff, patients and supporters of St Richard’s Hospice are celebrating after the plans were approved at a meeting on Thursday.

The Worcestershire charity had submitted the expansion plans to help them meet the ever-increasing need for hospice care in the county now and in the future.

Hospice bosses made the move to expand follows a strategic study to determine the future of the care services it offers in the next decade.

Chief Executive June Patel said: “Currently areas of our hospice building in Worcester are bursting at the seams and we are struggling to respond to the ever-increasing number of patients.

“In order to better support our current patients and reach the unmet need of thousands of local people in the future, we will have to expand and adapt our current space and services.

“We are already at full capacity and the demand is set to rise sharply with our aging population and people living longer with multiple illnesses such as heart failure, Parkinson’s, and motor neurone disease as well as cancer.

“Our vision is for a bigger hospice where we will be able to support people from the point they are diagnosed, improving their quality of life and offering support to their loved ones.

“The bigger hospice, widespread redevelopment of the current building and a focus on more flexible, seven day a week care.

“Bigger, multi-purpose spaces will allow us to offer a wider choice of activities to help people manage their illness where appropriate.

The planning go-ahead and an unexpected £2million windfall from a hospice supporter brings the expansion and redevelopment a step nearer to becoming a reality.

All the new and expanded services will run alongside St Richard’s current range of patient and family care including support in people’s own homes and 17 in-patient beds.

“St Richard’s is the only organisation in South Worcestershire providing specialist end of life care,” Mrs Patel said.

“There is an increasing demand for our support to adults with a life-limiting illness and their families and without a bigger hospice many more people will face their illness alone, without the significant benefits that being part of the St Richard’s ‘family’ can bring.”

Charity chiefs do not anticipate being handed any Government cash for the project and plan to launch a fund-raising appeal for the remaining funds next year.

Depending on funding, the work is set to be completed by 2020.

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