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Ashgate Hospicecare have launched a new way for supporters to celebrate, mourn and remember their loved ones with their Forget-Me-Not Appeal.
As part of the appeal, which is sponsored by Graysons Solicitors, people can make a suggested donation of £25 for a custom made, beautifully crafted forget-me-not flower, to pay a lasting tribute to friends and family.
The striking purple flowers, each measuring 45cm in length, have been made by the Oswestry-based British Ironwork Centre.
The limited-edition flowers will form a display from 8th to 30th June, within the picturesque grounds of Chatsworth.
Jack Wood, Head of Fundraising at Ashgate Hospicecare, said: “The last year has been a difficult time for everyone. One of the most heartbreaking aspects of COVID is how it has kept people apart, particularly at times when people needed each other more than ever.
“It took away the opportunity for people to say their final goodbyes, to be by their bedside and to share in those sacred last moments. This is extremely difficult for those left behind, as they look for a way to process their experiences and navigate this new world of grief.
“That is why we are proud to be able to offer our community a meaningful way to remember their loved ones and to provide them with the time to reflect.
“A forget-me-not flower can be dedicated to anyone; they don’t need to have accessed the support and services of Ashgate Hospicecare.”
“The hospice allowed Julie to spend her final moments in peace.”
Steve Griffiths, 67, from Winster in the Peak District, will be dedicating a forget-me-not in memory of his wife, Julie, who experienced ‘exceptional’ care at Ashgate Hospicecare’s inpatient unit after being diagnosed with mesothelioma, a rare type of lung cancer.
Steve said: “The hospice allowed Julie to spend her final moments in peace. The last thing I’d want was for her to have an unpleasant death; she’d suffered enough already. Ashgate gave her a very calming and peaceful end to her life and I’m enormously grateful for this.
“That’s the marvellous thing about Ashgate – it takes the stress away so you can focus on creating those final memories together. The team are always there and make everything as easy as possible for you. Whatever we needed was there, whenever we needed it.
“In tribute to Julie, I’ve chosen to support Ashgate Hospicecare’s Forget-Me-Not Appeal and dedicate a keepsake flower in memory of her. I know Julie would have loved to have walked through the stunning grounds at Chatsworth to see the meadow of flowers glistening in the sun.”
Visit the forget-me-not display at Chatsworth
Thousands of forget-me-nots will form a display at Chatsworth, home to the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire.
The Duke of Devonshire and President of Ashgate Hospicecare, said: “We are delighted to welcome the local community to Chatsworth to pause in a moment of reflection together.
“Undoubtedly, this has been an extremely challenging year, which makes this display ever more poignant, while raising much needed funds for our much-loved local hospice.
“Money raised from appeals such as this one, ensures the continuation of the exceptional care and services that Ashgate deliver to thousands of families across North Derbyshire.”
The suggested donation for a forget-me-not is £25 and money raised will be used to fund the hospice’s round-the-clock specialist end-of-life care.
To dedicate a flower, visit www.ashgatehospicecare.org.uk/forget-me-not or call the fundraising team on 01246 567250.
Supporters will be able to collect their flower, or have them posted to them in July, once the public display is removed.
To find out more about the Forget-Me-Not Appeal, watch the campaign video: