FROM humble beginnings in Warwick, Myton Hospice is celebrating helping thousands of people in the 35 years it has since been running.
The charity was founded in 1982 by Dr Thomas Wynter Backhouse following a tireless campaign with the Bishop of Coventry Rev. John Gibbs. The pair raised £400,000 to provide care for cancer patients and families who needed support during the later stages of their illness.
The hospice was officially opened by Princess Michael of Kent in 1982 and four years later enjoyed another royal visit – this time from Princess Diana.
Much has happened in the charity’s 35 years – not only has it gone on to open centres in Coventry and Rugby it has also started helping more people with life-limiting illnesses including heart conditions, Parkinson’s disease, Motor Neurone Disease and renal failure.
To remember Myton through the years, staff have been trawling the archives to create a timeline at the hospice – from when the idea first came about to the present day.
People are also encouraged to share their memories and photos and to look out for an exciting competition on Myton’s social media pages throughout June.
Chief executive Ruth Freeman said: “This year is very special for us because it’s our 35th birthday and that means it’s time to celebrate everything that The Myton Hospices has achieved over the last three and a half decades.
“Since the doors at Warwick first opened in 1982 Myton has made a difference to the lives of thousands of patients and their families. This is testament to the hard work and dedication of the hundreds of advocates, staff and volunteers who have worked for the organisation since its inception, as well as to the continued enthusiasm and big-heartedness of our supporters.
“As we look forward to the next 35 years we have a vision for Coventry and Warwickshire which will ensure that more people will be able to live well for longer with an illness that can’t be cured, that more people will have a choice about where they spend their final days and that more families will be supported when their loved one’s choice is to stay at home. With the continued backing and generosity of the local community we will work tirelessly to make this vision a reality.”
The charity needs to raise nearly £9million this year to continue to provide its services free of charge. Myton’s fundraising team have also set themselves the challenge of raising £35,000 for the 35th birthday celebrations and are calling for help from people across the region.
They have created a fundraising pack with ways people can raise vital funds to support the charity.
Visit www.mytonhospice.org to find out more.