Hello, I’m Elaine and I am one of the cooks in the kitchen at The Hospice.

There are 6 of us that work here on a rota system working together to cater for the whole hospice including patients, families and staff. We also cater for the Joan Tomkins centre and other events within The Hospice. Everything we cook is homemade and prepared from scratch within The Hospice kitchen.

Like everyone working at The Hospice, we are really focused on the patients, we are more than happy to cater for different tastes and specific requests whenever we can. Patient’s taste buds and food preferences may change, therefore we are happy to cook anything they would like, we really enjoy catering for everyone’s requirements and making our food extra special. While we do focus on our patient’s requirements, we also ensure we are providing a meal for the families and friends that are here to visit, they are often suffering too so we want to provide a nice home cooked meal for them as well.

I think hospice care is about making patients comfortable, making sure they are looked after and providing an all-round service to care for the individual and their loved ones.

I wanted to work for St Helena because I wanted a job that felt rewarding, I feel I am giving something back by making someone happy through the food that we cook. It’s all about food really, we just want to make sure everyone is happy and cooking is how we can contribute to peoples care at the hospice. I find my role really rewarding and satisfying, it’s the one and only job that I can say that for.

I made a cake for some friends of mine that have a friend staying in the hospice, they asked me to make it for a day that I don’t work but I really wanted to still come in to make a cake for them. I made the cake for them and it really made a difference to the patient and their loved ones, they were so grateful for me taking the time to do something a special for them. The patient wanted to meet me to thank me when I returned to work, it really made a difference to me and meant a lot to the patient as well.

My perception of a hospice has really changed, one of my friends sadly passed away and she refused to go into a hospice at the time. After that, I thought hospices weren’t very nice, but having been to St Helena and seeing everything that the hospice has to offer, my opinion has definitely changed. The pinkies and the volunteers that work in the hospice make such a big difference to people’s lives and help to support the families as well.

A moment that stands out to me, was when I was carefully pouring cream onto some soup that I was preparing for a patient, the volunteer waiting to take it out said to me ‘Wow, you really do take time and thought into making patients food special’. For me, that’s what it’s all about, taking a little bit of extra time to make people’s food special, because we care. When a patient requests a specific sandwich, to me it might just be a ham and cheese sandwich, but for them it might make their day a little bit better.

Elaine Bodfield, Cook

Contact Information

To contact the St Helena Fundraising team, please telephone 01206 931 468 or email fundraising@sthelena.org.uk , Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm.


To contact the St Helena Retail team, for enquiries about our shops, donation centre and house clearance service please telephone 01206 890 165.


24 hour advice: SinglePoint 01206 890 360

SinglePoint is a 24/7 advice and support helpline which helps to coordinate an individual’s care with the hospice. SinglePoint also works alongside other healthcare services such as GPs, Community Nurses or Specialists.

The Hospice

To contact a patient at The Hospice please find the address and telephone number below. Phone calls can be made to patients at any time of the day or week. You can contact Inpatient Services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

The Hospice, Myland Hall, Barncroft Close, Highwoods, Colchester, C04 9JU

Telephone: 01206 845 566

Hospice in the Home

You can contact The Hospice in the Home Team Monday to Friday, between 9.00am and 5.00pm on:

Colchester/Halstead team
Telephone: 01206 845 566

Tendring community team
Telephone: 01255 221 222

Day Therapies

You can contact the Joan Tomkins Centre (Colchester) Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm on:

Telephone: 01206 848 163

Fax: 01206 752 245

You can contact the St Helena Tendring Centre (Clacton) Monday to Friday, between 9.00am and 5.00pm on 01255 221 222

Tendring Centre Postcode for Sat Navs: CO15 1EU

Human Resources

The HR Team can be contacted Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm on 01206 931 466

Finance Team

To contact the St Helena Finance Team please telephone 01206 931 450 Monday to Friday, 9.00am to 5.00pm

Volunteer Services Team

The Volunteer Services team can be contacted Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm on 01206 931 466

Media Enquiries

For all media enquiries between 9.00am and 5.00pm, Monday to Friday, please phone the Marketing and Communications team directly on 01206 931 464

Patient Referrals

If you, or a member of your family has a life-limiting illness and would like to discuss whether St Helena care services can help, you can contact the SinglePoint telephone service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on 01206 890 360

Bereavement Support

To contact the St Helena Bereavement Support team please telephone the bereavement helpline: 01206 984 274, Monday to Friday, 9.00am to 5.00pm

Learning and Development Centre

The Learning and Development Centre is open Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm and can be contacted on 01206 851 560

Service User Group

For more information on the St Helena Service User Group please contact Chair, Ken Aldred on 01206 751 397

Facilities Hire Enquiries

01206 851560


To contact the Lottery team please call 0800 285 1390 or visit the website here, Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm.

If you would like to write to or visit the Lottery team, the address is: Your Hospice Lottery Office Unit 6 The Atrium, Phoenix Square, Wyncolls Road, Colchester CO4 9AS.

Comment, compliment or complaint

Feedback, comments and complaints about St Helena care and support services may be made verbally or in writing to: Director of Care, St Helena, Myland Hall, Barncroft Close, Highwoods, Colchester, CO4 9JU. To speak to a member of our team, call 01206 845 566