Login Register

Forget Me Not Children's Hospice unable to re-open to children until after Easter following fire

Another fundraising push has been made to try recoup the charity's loss of £140,000

A children's hospice hit by a fire in January is to remain closed for at least another two weeks.

That is the ruling by Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice chief executive Peter Branson, after the Russell House site in Brackenhall lost more than £140,000 in funding following a blaze that affected the building’s main power supply on January 12.

Seriously ill children and their families will not be able to make use of the site’s services, which include respite care, therapy and more, until after Easter.

The site has had to remain closed while essential works are carried out, which include a complete rewiring, re-decorating and re-furnishing of the building.

Chief executive of the Forget-me-Not Hospice, Peter Branson at the seat of the recent fire which started beneath the floor in one of the upper storey rooms.

However, the 185 users of the service are continuing to receive support at home.

No-one was injured in the fire, but the one child being cared for there at the time and staff were evacuated from the premises before two fire crews from Huddersfield and one from Rastrick attended to deal with it.

Giving an update, Mr Branson, said: “We will not be able to use the building for children and families until after Easter.

“We are continuing to provide care for all 185 children and families we support through our Hospice at Home service.”

Well-wishers have come out in force since the incident to help it recoup its lost costs but Mr Branson pleaded for more support.

READ MORE: First ever colour Run for Forget Me Not Children's Hospice to take place on May 21

READ MORE: Watch Forget Me Not Trust Hospice chief's heartfelt plea for support after losing £140,000 following fire

“We are immensely grateful for the response to our fundraising fire appeal, which has raised more than £20,000 but we still have a lot of catching up to do so we need the public’s continued support.”

The hospice costs £10,000 a day to run and more had been lost due to its fundraising headquarters being out of action.

The majority of the re-build costs will be covered by the insurers but the loss of fundraising hours and income is a huge concern for the charity.

The Forget-me-Not Children's Hospice, Sheepridge.

With just six per cent of its funding coming from the government, the charity must raise over £3.8m each year to ensure it’s able to provide the appropriate care and support to the children and their families.

People can make a donation to the Just Giving page: bit.ly/FMNFireAppeal or text FIRE12 plus your donation (e.g. FIRE12 £10) to 70070.

Once they have donated, they are being asked to encourage others using the hashtag #ForgetMeNotSwap or tweet the hospice at @ForgetMNotChild.



Doug Thomson
Huddersfield Town correspondent
Chris Roberts
Huddersfield Giants correspondent
Louise Cooper
Crime correspondent
Nick Lavigueur
Health Correspondent
Joanne Douglas
Local Government Correspondent
Linda Whitwam
Education Correspondent
Henryk Zientek
Business Correspondent
Martin Shaw
Mirfield Correspondent