With your help we can Build It Together! St Ann’s Hospice launches £2million public appeal for new hospice building to transform end of life care for Greater Manchester residents 

Work on the new £20million plus building which will be on the of the UK’s largest and most modern hospices is set to start later this year

The hospice’s Build It Together £2million fundraising appeal is being backed by Coronation Street actors Lee Boardman and Jennifer James after Lee’s sister Suzy received care at the hospice 

The current building in Heald Green, Stockport is over 150  years old and no longer fit for purpose. Without a new building, services will have to close 

The bright and airy new hospice building will include 21 private en-suite bedrooms for patients – currently there are no private rooms for patients 

The new hospice will also be a regional centre of excellence, training other healthcare teams from across the North West in how to provide the best possible end of life and palliative care 

It is hoped that the new hospice can open to patients in 2024

Video on the new hospice: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oxLOkbQjMqc

St Ann’s Hospice is today (June 28th) launching its ‘Build It Together’ appeal, urging local people to come together and help it to raise the final £2million needed for a flagship new hospice, which will be a leading facility for end of life care in the UK.

The current St Ann’s hospice building in Heald Green, Stockport is more than 150 years old, and is no longer fit for purpose with limited air-flow, many small rooms with limited natural light and narrow corridors. The new bright and airy hospice building will help St Ann’s transform care and quality of life for palliative and end of life care patients across Greater Manchester.

St Ann’s is hoping that the public will get behind the campaign meaning building work can start later in the year.

A new building is now desperately needed – meaning if a new one isn’t built, hospice services in the area may be forced to close.

Actors Lee Boardman and Jennifer James are backing a brand new, urgent appeal to build a new hospice.

Lee Boardman said: “Losing St Ann’s Hospice is unthinkable. It’s been at the heart of the community for over 50 years, ready to help.  I honestly never thought my family would need their support, but I’m so glad they were there for us when we needed them.”

Lee and his family reached out to St Ann’s for support eight years ago.  His sister Mandy died of cancer in January 2014 and his younger sister, Suzy, was dying of secondaries from breast cancer at the same time.

He said: “My family went through an unimaginable time of heartbreak. 

“Within weeks of losing Mandy, Suzy degenerated to the point where she just couldn’t live at home on her own. She urgently needed more specialist care and support than we, her family, could provide. I’d grown up in Stockport so thankfully we’d heard of St Ann’s Hospice.

“I was in such a state of high anxiety and emotion but we just rocked up and I begged them to help Suzy.  They were amazing and literally, within four hours, St Ann’s had lifted the weight that we’d been carrying for so long off­ our shoulders.”

“We felt – and still feel – forever indebted to St Ann’s, and, although it took a long time to heal from the losses I suffered, I said that I’d literally do anything I could in return for the support they gave my family.  When I heard recently that St Ann’s urgently needs to build a new hospice, I had to step in to help. 

“We have to save St Ann’s ‑ the bottom line is, without a modern new hospice, the care and support my family received simply might not be available to other local families in the future.” 

The ambitious £21.5million project will see the current outdated building on St Ann’s Road North replaced with a purpose-built modern facility on land adjacent to the current site, and the charity is hoping that members of the local community will help them raise the £2million they need to make it a reality.

Rachel McMillan, the hospice’s chief executive, said: “It was only thanks to the community of Greater Manchester that, fifty one years ago, St Ann’s was able to first open the doors to Manchester’s hospice. Now, as we prepare for the next phase in the history of specialist palliative and end of life care in the area, we are appealing to that community again to support the building of their new hospice.  

“We know it’s a big ask, but that same community has always been here for us – we never take that for granted, and we’re proud to have such deep roots in the areas we serve across Greater Manchester.  Every donation, however big or small; every pledge to help us, it all really will make a difference. Not just now, but for future generations of local families too.”

The building will comprise a 27-bed inpatient unit including 21 en-suite bedrooms with access to private outdoor terraces.  It will also feature modern outpatient and day therapy services, dedicated bereavement and family support spaces, offices, a café which will be open to the public, landscaped gardens and improved car parking.  

It will also be home to the only non-university immersive healthcare training suite in the area, with integrated technology and the capacity to simulate real life scenarios.  This will allow experts from St Ann’s to share their specialist knowledge with other organisations and help drive excellence in palliative and end of life care both locally and nationally.

Rachel said: “In Greater Manchester we’re used to doing things differently and leading the way.  We’re proud that we provide world-class hospice care from right here in this amazing city, and as the needs of patients change, we need to evolve too to make sure we can continue to give them the truly personalised care that they deserve.

“We simply can’t continue to care for local people in our current building.  It is no longer fit for purpose and we’re in real danger of having to close services in the near future if we don’t complete this project.

“We support people at all stages of their life-limiting illness, and if we weren’t here, those patients simply wouldn’t be able to access local, specialist care.  At a time which for many is one of the most vulnerable in their life, that’s unthinkable.”

The new building has been designed with the environment in mind, being ecologically efficient, using the latest green initiatives including a green roof, PC panelling and grey water solutions.  The car park will have electric charging points and plentiful room for bicycles.

Lee added: “I’ve seen the plans for the new hospice and they are outrageously brilliant.  The architects have really thought about the needs of patients and families. 

“Building the new hospice is not a ‘nice to have’ option.  It’s an absolutely necessity, so it’s vital that we all rally round now to do our bit and help build a new St Ann’s together.”

The hospice is asking individuals, businesses and others locally to make a donation, or get in touch to find out more and pledge their support to help raise the £2million needed.

To make a donation now, please visit www.sah.org.uk/newhospice, text LETSBUILDIT to 70085 to give £20 or call 0161 498 3631.