Hospice charity launches glass flower display to celebrate 30th anniversary

Forest Holme Hospice Charity celebrated its 30th anniversary with the launch of a stunning display of 1,000 handcrafted stained glass fritillaria flowers at Merley House in Wimborne.

Guests including The Mayor of Poole, artist Ellie Drake-Lee and Dr Stephen Kirkham, who was the first consultant at Forest Holme when it opened, joined hospice staff, volunteers and charity trustees in the gardens at Merley House to officially open the display.

The event, which was sponsored by Gallagher Insurance in Poole, took place exactly 30 years to the day that Forest Holme Hospice Charity or Friends of Forest Holme as it was known then, first opened its doors to raise funds for the then new specialist palliative care unit based at Seldown Road in Poole. 1994 was the year Four Weddings and a Funeral became the top grossing UK film, the first UK National Lottery draw took place, and Tony Blair won the Labour Party leadership election.
Members of the public have the opportunity to own one of these commemorative handcrafted stained-glass flowers, skilfully created by the talented artist Ellie Drake-Lee from Garden Glass Art, which will be available for delivery or collection for the rest of the year.

The Charity officially launched on 26th April 1994 and since then donations from supporters have helped the hospice to care for over 30,000 patients and their families.

Hannah O’ Hare, CEO of Forest Holme Hospice Charity, said, “This installation serves as a symbol of remembrance, hope, and the enduring spirit of compassion that defines Forest Holme’s commitment to end-of-life care. The art installation offers a focal point of reflection and inspiration during our 30th anniversary year and is an opportunity for supporters and community members to purchase and own a special commemorative handcrafted piece of art, serving as a poignant tribute to love, loss, and compassion.”

Ellie Drake-Lee from Glass Garden Art, who is the gifted artist behind this project, added, “I am thrilled to be involved in this colourful celebration of a fundraising initiative. It means so much to me on a personal level and an artistic level. Both my parents were cared for at the end of their lives at a hospice, so I know how vital it is to support them in raising funds. Forest Holme have been so supportive with this amazing creative idea and I am really looking forward to seeing the installation of all my glass flowers, every one unique, on display at Merley House.”

If you would like to help celebrate the hospice’s 30th Anniversary and purchase a keepsake flower visit https://register.enthuse.com/ps/event/GlassFlowers or to learn more about the work of Forest Holme and its Charity, please visit: www.forestholmehospice.org.uk

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