Memorial Carol Service at Colchester Crematorium raises funds for St Helena Hospice

PUBLISHED: 25 January 2024

A memorial carol service at Colchester Crematorium, held on Thursday, 14 December 2023, not only commemorated the lives we hold dear, but also saw donations from attendees raise £110.50 for St Helena Hospice.

Led by Reverend Peter Evans and Russell Gadsby, the informal and friendly service featured poignant readings, beautiful poems, and traditional carols, creating a festive atmosphere. Organist Stephen Evans and soloist Graham Long added a musical touch that resonated with the audience.

Post-service camaraderie was further enhanced by refreshments generously provided by the Starlight Tea Room, allowing attendees to share moments of reflection and connection.

The service not only brought together approximately 80 attendees, but also reached a wider audience through the webcast facility.

Cllr Natalie Sommers, Portfolio Holder for Communities, said: “The kind donations from people attending the Memorial Carol Service have made a wonderful contribution to St Helena Hospice. The funds raised reflect the compassionate spirit of our community and I would like to extend my heartfelt gratitude to everyone who attended this festive gathering, both in person and virtually, and contributed to making this Memorial Carol Service meaningful.”

James Martin-Whymark, Community Fundraiser (Tendring) of St Helena Hospice said: “St Helena Hospice is an independent charity, providing our services free of charge. Only 27% of our income comes from the NHS; 73% of the income needed to run St Helena is raised through the local community giving donations, buying in St Helena shops, paying for care from Radfield Home Care in support of St Helena, playing Your Hospice Lottery, and leaving gifts in Wills. We rely heavily on the help and generosity of our fundraisers, donors and volunteers. Without them we wouldn’t be here.”

The service also provided an opportunity for individuals to express their sentiments by writing personal messages on tags and hanging them on a Christmas tree. This shared experience fostered a real sense of community and emotional connection among the participants.

Pictured above, L to R: Russell Gadsby – Bereavement Services Manager; Susi Long – Crematorium Office Supervisor; Cllr Natalie Sommers; James Martin-Whymark – St Helena Hospice; Saul Hunnaball – Director Hunnaball Family Funeral Group

Page last reviewed: 25 January 2024


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