Over that time we have brought comfort and relief to tens of thousands of people. Throughout our history we have relied heavily on the help and generosity of our fundraisers, donors and volunteers. Without them we wouldn’t exist and without them we wouldn’t still be here for the people of north east Essex. On behalf of all the staff and trustees at St Helena, a massive thank you to everyone who has so generously supported us over the years.
1979 - A public meeting was held in Colchester Town Hall in July bringing together a Steering Committee of health and social care people with the finance and legal expertise needed to get the project off the ground. By December an appeal was launched for £250,000 to fund the hospice.
1983 - Myland Hall was acquired in February and in November the Duchess of Norfolk visited for the ground-breaking ceremony as work began to develop the site, while the Steering Committee instigated the work of specialist nurses in the community.
Read more detail on the 6 years of planning as part of our St Helena Hospice Heritage Stories project.
1985 - The Hospice opened on 20th May! We were proud to be able to support our first patient at our 15 bed unit.
1986 - The hospice was officially opened on 11th April by The Queen Mother.
1988 - Diana, Princess of Wales, officially opened the Joan Tomkins Centre in April - built to host our day therapies services, thanks to a generous donation from local businessman Robin Tomkins, in memory of his wife.
1993 – The innovative STARS programme (Supporting Talking Adjusting and Remembering Someone Special) began providing intensive bereavement support for young families.
1995 – The Learning and Development Centre was opened to share our expert knowledge and promote our philosophy of total support among health and social care professionals across north Essex.
2002 – The Tendring Centre opened in the centre of Clacton-on-Sea providing a wide range of day therapies and bereavement support services.
2007 – The hospice was extended and refurbished.
2010 – The Joan Tomkins Centre was extended and modernised.
2011 – The Learning and Development Centre was extended and modernised.
2015 – St Helena celebrated 30 years of supporting our community; radio and television presenter Dermot O’Leary became patron; SinglePoint, a 24/7 telephone advice line and care coordination centre, was introduced, along with the My Care Choices Register which empowers people to plan ahead and share their choices.
2020 – Covid-19 brought many challenges to St Helena.
Through our St Helena Hospice Heritage Stories project we are collecting, recording and preserving memories of people involved at the beginning of our journey, supported by The National Lottery Heritage Fund with our thanks to National Lottery players.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have a story to tell about the early days of St Helena Hospice.
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