Reflecting on 35 Years of Compassionate Care

A group of individuals in 1988, spearheaded by Pendleside Hospice’s founder, Miss Muriel Jobling MBE, took it upon themselves to build a hospice for the people of our community.

Without it, those living in Burnley and Pendle, of which over 180,000 reside, would have had to travel to Blackburn, should they have needed palliative and end of life care.

Pendleside Hospice now stands as a beacon of compassion in the heart of our community. What started as a day service unit at Marsden Community Centre in Burnley has now evolved into a lifeline for over 1,700 people a year, including more than 600 adults and children, receiving pre and post bereavement support at our Family Support Centre.

Helen McVey, Chief Executive at Pendleside Hospice adds: "This week, we celebrate Pendleside's 35th anniversary and I believe that the reason we’ve come this far is because of the wonderful support from our community. 

It never ceases to amaze me, after nearly 20 years of being at Pendleside myself, the lengths people go to, and the crazy ideas people come up with, to raise vital funds for our charity. From cake sales to marathons, and from quiz nights to community fayres, every penny raised from these events count.

As well as individual fundraisers, Pendleside’s own events, such as the annual Pendle Pub Walk, always receive such an incredible amount of support. We’re always trying to conjure up new and innovative ideas for fundraising events and it's thanks to those taking part that our services can continue to grow.

Local businesses support us greatly, with nearly 70 businesses joining this year’s Corporate Challenge. The challenge has just come to an end and we’re excited to see what our businesses have collectively raised over the last four months. Businesspeople of Burnley and Pendle also support us in other ways, by freely giving up their time. We’re fortunate to have a strong team of 13 trustees, from varying sectors, helping the Hospice grow and move in the right direction. 

It’s exciting to see, with all of this fantastic support, where Pendleside Hospice will be in another 35 years.”

The pandemic, like for many other organisations, was undoubtedly one of the biggest challenges for Pendleside. Just six days after the lockdown announcement, Pendleside made the tough decision to temporarily close its day services, yet in a remarkable display of adaptability, the rooms were transformed into eight additional bedrooms. A campaign was also launched to keep the Hospice's doors open, which received significant support from that of local footballer and Pendleside Ambassador, Jay Rodriguez, emphasising the hospice's special place in the community.

Reflecting on his involvement, Rodriguez said, "Obviously being from Burnley, I've seen how the Hospice helps so many people. Most people have been touched by them, helped by them, or know someone who has been supported by them, and you can see from the support it receives from around the town what a special place it is."

Lindsey Partridge-Baldwin, is one of those many people, touched by the Hospice. Lindsey shares her own story as to what Pendleside means to her and attending both inpatients and the health and wellbeing service at the Hospice: "My journey with Pendleside Hospice started 18 months ago, after spending two weeks within the inpatient unit for symptom control. I was diagnosed with secondary breast cancer in 2007, and the Hospice has been a great help to both me and my husband, Mel."

HWR Practitioner Karin Franks and Service User Lindsey Partridge-Baldwin

Lindsey's story mirrors the experiences of many others who have found comfort and support within Pendleside's walls. The Palliative Care Group, a sanctuary for those with cancer and life-limiting illnesses, has become a source of camaraderie and understanding. As Lindsey aptly puts it, "It's obvious why we're all together in the room - nobody really goes into detail about their diagnoses - we simply enjoy being together.

I have many fond memories from my time at Pendleside and the staff and volunteers are brilliant - the work they do is invaluable. My husband is my full-time carer, therefore being a part of the group allows him some respite too, and I’m forever grateful to the Hospice for offering this level of support.”

With each passing year, Pendleside's impact grows, thanks to the unwavering support of the community, dedicated staff, and passionate volunteers. The Hospice stands as a living testament to the power of compassion and community. Together, we look forward to many more years of providing care, compassion and support to those dealing with life-limiting illnesses, and their families and carers too.

Should you wish to speak with someone about our services, please contact our main reception on 01282 440 100, where we will direct you to the right department.