Paving the way!

POW Hospice - Yvette Cooper prepares to open the garden with Hospice manager David Stewart and Pat Laycock
POW Hospice - Yvette Cooper prepares to open the garden with Hospice manager David Stewart and Pat Laycock
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HUNDREDS turned out on the hottest day of the year to celebrate loved ones lost and the Prince of Wales Hospice.

Around 350 people, families and supporters of the Halfpenny Lane hospice, braved temperatures of almost 30 degrees to witness the official opening of the centre’s celebration courtyard on Sunday.

The secluded space, which is paved with sponsored slabs bearing the names of people treated at the hospice and hospice supporters, was officially opened by Pontefract and Castleford MP Yvette Cooper.

The campaign to sponsor a paving stone in the courtyard echoes the first Prince of Wales Hospice campaign which called on people to ‘sponsor a brick’ to help build the centre more than 20 years ago.

At the ceremony Ms Cooper paid tribute to the work done by the hospice and to those who had supported the campaign, adding: “Very many congratulations to everybody who has been involved with the fundraising so far.

“Let’s stand together as a community, not just for Pontefract but across the Five Towns and beyond, to show our support for the Prince of Wales Hospice and hope other people will join us in supporting it for the future.”

David Stewart, chief executive of the hospice, said: “The courtyard is absolutely tremendous for the hospice, it reflects all the support we have had within the community for the last 22 years and it allows people to celebrate the lives of their loved ones and allows supporters to have their contributions acknowledged as well.”

Following the ceremony visitors flocked outside to enjoy refreshments and entertainment and the courtyard was opened for people to admire the paving slabs, one of which was sponsored by the Express.

To sponsor a paving slab contact the Prince of Wales Hospice on 01977 708868.