'The hospice provided dignity for many' - your reaction as St Clare's announces closure

Families have been thanking staff and volunteers at St Clare's Hospice after news of its immediate closure was announced.

Tuesday, 22nd January 2019, 11:17 am
Updated Tuesday, 22nd January 2019, 11:20 am
The community is mourning the loss of St Clare's Hospice in Jarrow.

Opening in 1987, the Jarrow-based hospice has helped a countless number of families across South Tyneside at some of the most difficult times of their lives.

St Clare's closure was announced on Monday.

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In September last year the hospice closed temporarily following an inspection by the Care Quality Commission, which found improvements needed to be made across key areas.

This closure contributed to severe financial difficulties faced by the charitable trust which runs the hospice, leaving it insolvent.

More than a hundred of you got in touch with the Gazette on social media to share your experiences of using the hospice's services, and express your sadness at its closure.

Many thanked staff from over the years for their "amazing" support and work.

A number of fundraisers are held each year to support the hospice and its work.

Here are some of your message from the Shields Gazette Facebook page:

Phil Brown: "A sad day ... and especially for all of the hard work of people who have raised so much money."

Linda Chambers: "Would have been nice to have found out a different way, been a volunteer for nearly four years, always last to know, but very sad to hear as it's been a pleasure working here and met some lovely caring people."

Carl Mason: "Why aren’t centres like this funded by the government? Such a shame."

A Boxing Day dip at South Shields in December, in aid of St Clare's.

Sean Hesa: "The hospice provided dignity for many."

Julie Robinson: "Absolutely disgusting that this hospice is closing. It provides vital support for so many."

Shellie Coyle: "Surely someone somewhere can get this back up and running? All those families who are going to be affected. So sad."

Terence Mcdonald: "What a shame, this place was brilliant when my father sadly passed away in there lovely place and people."

Lynda Ann Millican: "Oh no. This is so sad. I had good (well as good as you can have in that situation) experiences with both my parents as both in and outpatients it holds a place in my heart. The staff were wonderful."

Sherrie McKean: "Devastating news. So many people will suffer without St Clare's."

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Read more: St Clare's Hospice closes after more than 30 years of service

Agnes George: "Such a sad situation. Surely there's someone qualified to run this hospice. Its always had such a great reputation and fabulous support fro local families and businesses. My mam passed away in there and i was allowed to spend every night with her. The staff are lovely."

Lynsey Simmons: "My Dad and Grandad passed away here. They provide such a vital roll in palliative care for many local families. They were amazing with us. This is a sad loss to the borough."

Maureen Brown-Canavan: "Absolute disgrace this hospice has closed when so many patients need it."

Marilyn Rounthwaite: "Omg so so sad I couldn't have managed without their help when my husband was in there in 2001. He passed way in there and I could not have asked for any more care and love for him. So so sad."

Clare Hockings: "Absolutely gutted reading this. St Clare’s Hospice were amazing with my father-in -law and a few years later, my auntie. Devastated this has happened. Wish there was something we could do."

Pam Johnson: "What a shame this hospice has been a lovely place to many families including mine at a time when needed staff where always lovely so sorry to hear this sad sad day for all."

Lisa Wightman: "I'm gutted about this. The care and support that my Dad and us as a family received nearly three years ago was amazing. I don't know how we would have managed without this place. I feel so sorry for those going through palliative care that now don't have this facility."

Ray Carrick: "So sad to hear this my dad was in there and they looked after him brilliant [sic]. Lovely staff and the place it self was well maintained. Sad day for Jarra."

Tracie Crumbie: "Such a shame. Gave our Grandad a comfortable last few weeks of life."

Deborah Henderson: "I am gutted that it’s closing, my mam passed away in here and they were amazing help when my dad passed away a year later at home. My mam used to love her weekly visits and the support I got from all the staff during my mam’s illness."

Ann Wilkinson: "Is anything sacred anymore ... many a person last breath has been taken here. Such a shame."

Kate Crookston: "Really sad. OMG it was a beautiful place when you were in need."