12th August 2022

    Benches stolen from much loved hospice gardens

    Thoughtless thieves stole two benches from local charity, Pilgrims Hospices in Margate on Tuesday evening.  Shortly after nine pm, the newly refurbished wooden benches were captured on CCTV being carried by a man and a woman to a van parked on the main road.  The couple were caught on camera and the theft has been reported to the police.

    The wooden benches were recently refurbished by hospice volunteers, in an effort to improve the seating for patients and their families whilst using the gardens.

    We can’t thank the people of Thanet enough for their generosity and very kind words of support.

    Jon Sillett   Deputy CEO

    Jon May, Pilgrims Hospices Thanet Services Manager said: “We are all at a loss as to why people would want to steel from our charity. Just last week, a volunteer working party from Saga, repaired and gave the benches a fresh new look in blue paint, they looked wonderful. Saga employees are regular supporters of the hospices, and offer their time and expertise for which we are very grateful.

    “We are disappointed to say the least, that some people saw fit to steel our garden furniture, and feel even more disappointment for the volunteers who have taken so much time and effort to refurbish the benches and make them look so beautiful.

    “We rely on volunteer support from organisations such as Saga, and hope this unpleasant incident will not detract from the amazing work, they do for us now and in the future.  We really couldn’t do some of the vital work in and around our hospice and grounds without the generous support of our volunteers.”

    The charity has been inundated with kind offers from members of the community and local businesses, to replace the benches.  Jon Sillett, Deputy CEO, added: “We can’t thank the people of Thanet enough for their generosity and very kind words of support.  We have accepted a generous offer to replace the benches. Sadly, it’s unpleasant experiences such as this, that remind us how we are part of, and valued by the local community.

    We are now reviewing how we can improve the security on our site in Margate, and would love to enhance the security within the hospice settings to deter any future potential incidents. If you would like to make a contribution to items such as security gates, updating fences, lighting and other items, this would be very much appreciated. This would enable our gardens to be safe places for our patients and their loved ones to enjoy, and somewhere to create special moments and memories.

    If anyone would like to help with a donation, to help maintain the hospice for those who need Pilgrims care and support, you can donate here:  select Thanet garden and bench replacement donation from the drop down menu.  You can call Pilgrims Supporter Relations Team on 01227 782 062, every penny donated will be making a different to end-on-life care in our community.

    Pilgrims Hospices cares for more than 2,500 local people each year, free of charge, during the most challenging time in their lives. They offer care and support in people’s own homes, in the community and in their inpatient units as well as running a 24-hour advice line.









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