Walking to Remember

Following news of the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, we gave careful consideration to whether this year’s Walk to Remember, should go ahead.

At its heart our Walk to Remember is an event where people from across our community come together to remember those who are no longer with us. While the event raises vital funds for us, which we use to provide Hospice care, it provides an opportunity for us to join together, united in love, to honour and celebrate the lives of loved ones we have lost.

We agreed it had never been more necessary for it to go ahead than at a time of national mourning.

The whole evening was extra poignant with tributes to the queen, and space for people to come together, talk, chat, share memories and remember each person special to them. It reinforced how privileged St Mary’s is to be part of this caring community, look after and care for patients and those important to them. Over 500 families and friends took part, walking the ten mile route from Ulverston to Barrow.

The event, generously sponsored by Ørsted, started at Ulverston Better Leisure Centre. With a host of activities from face painting, singing to welcome everyone.

St Mary’s Hospice, Head of Income Generation, Helen Carlson shared: “We are united in love to celebrate, to remember and reflect on those that we have lost and love and never forget. So I hope tonight does you proud, we’ve added a few additions to the event, so we really do hope you enjoy yourselves. But I wanted to take this opportunity because yesterday we got some really sad news. We did discuss whether tonight should even go ahead. But we understand that it’s important to so many and actually tonight gives us an opportunity to remember the queen and pay our respects. So if it’s ok with you we’d like to take a moment, and have a moment of silence together, not just to remember the queen but also everybody dear to us. And that will lead in to the national anthem.”

The minute’s silence was then met with applause, the customary walk warm up, fireworks and the crowd being led out by the brilliant Boom Dang and cheered on its way through Croftlands.

Hospice supporters Charnley’s Home & Garden, Dalton, generously hosted much needed facilities and refreshments, with Tesco Barrow Community donating healthy snacks and drinks too. Walkers were looked after by volunteer marshals, supported and cheered on by St Mary’s staff and volunteers at check points along the route.

Sarah, walking for Heather’s Angels: “We are walking to remember my daughter Heather, she committed suicide in April, and we want to keep her memory alive. 22 of us are walking. My best friend spent time in the hospice. We all know someone who has been cared for there, and it’s just a legendary charity we want to support”

Supporters and furry supporters crossed the finish line to a warm welcome at Furness Academy, with members of St Mary’s clinical team, and awarded medals for their efforts. Furness Academy provided delicious and well-earned treats for everyone involved.

Mel Dixon, St Mary’s Hospice: “Everyone who takes part in the Walk to Remember is inspirational. This year was very emotional and extra special. It is a massive team, local businesses and community effort and even though families might be going through the toughest of times, the support was overwhelming.

It is always amazing to see the roads from Ulverston through to Barrow illuminated by flashing bunny ears, fairy lights, head lamps, glow sticks. Our community have been so supportive.”

Hospice volunteer Iain Bain said: “The walk was outstanding this year. I think all round it was the best, and went so smoothly. Losing the queen, made it so important to have the event and reminds you of your own loved ones lost. I was lucky to meet her in 1985 and it was a very special moment for me.”

Mel added: “On behalf of the hospice we would like to say a big thank you to everyone who took part, as well as everyone who helped make it happen – Ørsted, Boom Dang, Better Leisure Centre, The Rotary Club of Furness Peninsula, Furness Academy, Laser Lights Alive,  Ulverston Tri Club, The Balloon Box, BAE Marshals, Furness First Aiders, Nick Tryon for helping out with photos, incredible singers: Jay Broome Music, Ade White – Entertainer, Kev Thompson Vocalist, Talia Rae donating their time and talent, Charnley’s, Tesco, K2B Organising Committee, Larkins Engineering, Ulverston Fire Brigade, Peter Winston and incredible staff and volunteers. And Denise and Chloe Dixon for being back walkers. Everyone who helped the night run smoothly and make sure everyone was safe and supported if needed. With our much loved Family and Bereavement Support Team making sure they were there for anyone who needed them.”

We’d also like to remind our community that our Family & Bereavement Support team is on hand, now as always, should you need support.

Please note we will keep adding to our gallery of photos from the evening,