Families who have suffered heartbreak of child loss to gather at memorial service in South Shields

Families who have suffered the heartbreak of losing a child will gather to remember their lost loved ones as a memorial service fully returns for the first time since before the pandemic.

Wednesday, 11th May 2022, 5:06 pm

South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust will lead the memorial service for children, which is hosted by St Gregory’s RC Church, off Borough Road, close to the Nook in South Shields, on Saturday, May 14, at 3pm.

While other services were held during the pandemic, they were under stringent restrictions brought in by the Government to help reduce the spread of Covid-19.

The service will be led by Reverend Pat Bealing and Jennifer Lake, who are members of the chaplaincy team at South Tyneside District Hospital.

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The service will take place at St Gregory's Church.

It is open to people who have lost a child at any age in the past.

Families will be invited to give their child’s name as they enter the service if they wish it to be read out, and a candle will be lit for each child.

The service will last around 45 minutes and will feature a performance by The Beacon Band, which is based at the church.

The gathering this month comes in addition to another held around Christmas time, where a memorial book records the names of babies who have died prematurely or suddenly and messages are attached to a tree then put on display in the hospital chapel.

The service will take place at St Gregory's Church.

The crematorium will be closed for three months as work continues on the major remodeling of the complex, which will see chapel area extended into the existing courtyard.

The enlarged chapel will help to cater for larger funerals by increasing capacity by a total of 126 – providing seating for more than 200 visitors as well as additional standing space.

:: South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust continues to ask people to wear a facemask while visiting its hospitals and is encouraging people to have their Covid-19 vaccinations.