The Hospice of St Francis is to host a special Open Afternoon on Sunday 22nd September as part of its milestone 40th birthday celebrations.
The Berkhamsted-based charity, which started life following a moving Vigil of Prayer at St Peter’s Church, Berkhamsted, in June 1979, has been hosting events throughout the year to thank all those people who founded and have sustained it, and inviting those touched by its care to share their stories and precious memories.
Open to all, the Open Afternoon will feature live music, taster sessions, children’s activities, tours of the seven-acre gardens, including its stunning silver-gilt-winning Myeloma UK Garden - which was relocated from last year’s Chelsea Flower Show - and a chance to learn more about the Hospice’s services over tea, bubbles and cake on the lawns.
There will also be an Art Exhibition of 40 works of art, kindly donated by accomplished, local artists - each representing a year of the Hospice’s life – all of which will be available to buy through a silent auction on the Hospice’s website at stfrancis.org.uk/openafternoon
Hospice CEO, Kate Phipps-Wiltshire said: “The Open Afternoon is our way of saying ‘hello’ by opening our gardens to friends old and new, for an afternoon of relaxation and enjoyment. It is a lovely way to spend a Sunday and if you wish, to find out more about the Hospice.
“The event is part of our 40th birthday celebrations, saying a huge thank you to all those people who we rely on to enable us to do what we do. It is a way we can show supporters what their passion and dedication in raising funds achieves, enabling us to care for people they know and love and for people they will never know. This generosity of spirit is a proud tradition started by the Originals who founded The Hospice of St Francis to be funded by local people for local people back in 1979.”
The Open Afternoon runs from 2-5pm, with many other activities taking place, including a children’s Woodland Treasure Hunt, story time with a local author, a model railway display, face painting, children’s activities and stalls selling garden-related items including bird boxes and a selection of plants.
There will be a suggested donations of £3 on the gate, with children entering free. Free parking will be available at nearby Egerton Rothesay School in Durrants Lane with a free minibus shuttle service running visitors to the Hospice in Spring Garden Lane (HP4 3GW). Blue badge parking for those with limited mobility will be available on site at the Hospice itself.
For more information about the Hospice and its next big fundraising event, its legendary Mud Pack Challenge in the stunning grounds of Ashridge House on 13th October, visit www.stfrancis.org.uk .
For regular updates, follow the charity on Facebook www.facebook.com/thehospiceofstfrancis/ and Twitter @hospicstfrancis