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August 2012 – Service of Blessing

Archbishop Blesses Site for the New Hospice Building

The Archbishop of Liverpool, the Most Reverend Patrick Kelly, blessed the site of the new hospice extension on Monday 13th August 2012 at Francis House.

Following the demolition of the adjacent building the site has been cleared ready for construction works to begin on the new seven bedroom extension which will incease the amount of respite care the hospice can offer. Among those attending the blessing service were Mr Warren Smith JP, Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant of Greater Manchester, John Leech MP, Fundraiser Kirsty Howard, senior staff and members of the Care team at Francis House and young people and supporters of the hospice.

The Most Reverend Patrick Kelly, Bishop of Salford at the time, blessed the original site of Francis House over 20 years ago. The Franciscan Missionaries of St Joseph offered their convent to be converted into a children’s hospice, hence the name Francis House.

All children who come to Francis House from all around the North West have been diagnosed with an illness for which there is no known medical cure. Archbishop Kelly said, “Tonight is acknowledgement of the task in which we’re involved which is beyond even the best of our resources. To recall the original inspiration of Francis House came from the hearts of Christians but right from the beginning, that has inspired a determination to serve any family for whom this service can enrich lives.”

In recent years, medical advances and improved methods of care have seen the number of children living beyond sixteen years of age increase. This has resulted in the number of days and nights respite Francis House is able to offer each child and family being significantly reduced. Within this inevitable increase in numbers, the new extension will give existing users the number of nights respite they need and deserve.

In July 2011 Kirsty, helped by Sir Alex Ferguson, launched the new building appeal at Manchester Town Hall. The constructions works, due to be completed mid 2013, will double the number of bedrooms, each will have it’s own view onto the garden, it’s own colour scheme, will be fitted with specially adapted PS3 televisions, self-lowering wash basins and special baths.

The anticipated capital costs are £3.5 million and annual running costs for the extended Francis House will be approximately £4.6 million. If you would like to support us in “The Next Piece of the Jigsaw” please click on