WATCH: Derian House 25th anniversary: Fund-raising events and new faces

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As Derian House celebrates its 25th anniversary, the team is looking ahead, with new faces and a series of exciting events to celebrate its silver year.

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David Robinson and Julie Atherton

David Robinson and Julie Atherton

The Chorley hospice is embracing a new era, welcoming a new board of trustees and overseeing fresh and innovative developments with its senior management team.
David Robinson is delighted to be appointed new Interim Chief Operations Officer.
Since 2014, he has been a member of the Trust Board at Derian House, initially as a Trustee, and as chairman of both the Income Generation Committee, and the Finance Investment Committee. He was subsequently appointed to the role of vice chairman of the board in 2016, before stepping down in February 2108.
He says: “There is a real buzz about the place. I’m delighted to be appointed to this new role at such an exciting time, and to be able to lead the hospice forward to the next stage of its development.
“So many things are happening and the team is energised. We have some major changes coming and I am really exciting about bringing in more interactive services with the community.
“This year provides us with the perfect platform on our 25th Anniversary to look back at all that has been achieved at Derian House over the past 25 years, as well as to instigate all the exciting projects we have planned to drive Derian House forward into the future.”
“As a charity leading the way in children’s hospice care, Derian House is putting in place a wide range of new measures which will see the exceptionally high levels of care and support we provide, making a real difference to the lives of children and families throughout Lancashire and South Cumbria.”
Lynn Grayson, current clinical lead, is poised to take over from Julie Atherton, clinical director, when she retires next month.
She says: “My aim is to reach more families and continue improving the services we already deliver.
“We have a fantastic team of people who work here and we are developing our workforce to provide opportunities for the care team and to provide care to the wider community.
“We want to get Derian recognised as a centre of excellence and get involved in issues that are happening nationally and on a regional level.
“I am really excited to take on this role and make sure Derian gets the recognition it deserves for all the work it does for the children and their families.”
Starting with a Forget Me Not Lunch in May and culminating in the annual Lights of Love at Blackburn Cathedral in December, there are plenty of events for communities to enjoy and support the hospice.
The Forget Me Not lunch takes place at Mitton Hall, in Whalley, on Thursday May 17, from 11am.
Tickets are £40 and includes a sparkling reception, fashion stalls, lunch, guest speaker Cake Diva Rosie Dummer, winner of the Cake Masters Wedding Cake of the Year Award in 2012 and singer James Cockerill.
There will be a gala garden party and country fair at the hospice and in the adjoining pony field, on Sunday June 10, from 10am to 5pm.
The celebrations will have a vintage feel, with a wide range of traditional activities, including a craft and gifts fair, Taste of Lancashire Farmers Market, donkey rides, brass and silver bands, Punch and Judy, magic shows, funfair, birds of prey display, a dog show, ferret racing, duck and geese herding and dressage, plus a climbing wall, bungee trampolines and zorbing for the children. There will be guided tours of the hospice and a Prosecco and strawberry bar.
The hospice is throwing a challenge out to the community via the annual Morecambe Bay Walk on Sunday August 19. People are invited to get 25 people together to take part in the walk.
Susie Poppitt, head of fund-raising, says: “If each person in the group raised just £40 in sponsorship, that group would boost funds by £1,000 and if 25 groups took part, then we’d raise a staggering £25,000.”
Cedric Robinson, the official Queens Guide to the Sands, will help everyone negotiate the eight-mile walk across the sands. Kirkby Lonsdale Coach Hire supplies vehicles to transport parties to its starting point at Arnside.
To register online visit http://www.derianhouse/events.
The Stars of the Silver Screen Ball will be held at the Kilhey Court Hotel in Standish on Friday October 19.
Guests are invited to choose from a list of films from the 40s/50s/60s which include many of the Hollywood classics.
Once guests have chosen their film, they’ll receive a pack with all the information they need to enable them to make dress from the era in question, and their table will be themed accordingly.
It will include a champagne reception, a sumptuous meal and a host of entertainment to keep everyone entertained into the small hours.
Bronze, silver and gold packages are available or individual tickets cost £49.50.
Derian’s annual Winter Sparkle will take place at Astley Park on Sunday November 4. The festive day out includes a visit to Father Christmas, mulled wine and mince pies.
The series of events conclude with the a special service of celebration through the Lights of Love at Blackburn Cathedral on Friday December 7, which feature Christmas music, carols and readings, choirs and special guests from radio and television. For more information on any of these events call 01257 271 271 or email fundraising@derianhouse.co.uk

Lynn Grayson

Lynn Grayson

Derian House logo

Derian House logo