Haverhill charity helps Gruffalo and mouse move into Hospice garden

Yvonne Holman, St Nicholas Hospice Care Family Support Worker for Children, with supporters who helped to buy the 5ft carved Gruffalo, which has been installed in the Hospice gardens. Among them are Shirley (front) and Issy Gower, mother and sister of Jess Gower ANL-150514-142712001
Yvonne Holman, St Nicholas Hospice Care Family Support Worker for Children, with supporters who helped to buy the 5ft carved Gruffalo, which has been installed in the Hospice gardens. Among them are Shirley (front) and Issy Gower, mother and sister of Jess Gower ANL-150514-142712001

The family of a Haverhill teenager who died of cancer has helped bring the children’s favourite the Gruffalo and his friend the mouse to the gardens at St Nicholas Hospice Care, in Bury St Edmunds.

The carved wooden sculptures of the Gruffalo and mouse were bought for the wooded area of the Hospice gardens after fundraising and donations.

Among those to contribute was the charity My Blue Heart, which was started by the family of Linton Village College pupil Jess Gower, of Haverhill, who died of bone cancer aged 14. Her mum Shirley and sister Issy are in the above photo.

The charity donates profits from the sales of blue heart badges to other charities to support their work with bereaved children.

On Friday, May 8, a tea party was held at the Hospice ‘for people who like the Gruffalo or contributed to buying him’, said Yvonne

“We are really grateful for the support, because the Gruffalo and mouse are a wonderful addition to the Hospice,” she said.

“We already had a carved fox, snake and owl in the garden - animals which feature in the book - although they are not as beautifully painted as our Gruffalo and mouse.”

“They are part of our garden trail which children and grown-ups can follow. It is nice for the youngsters visiting the Hospice to be able to go and find the Gruffalo in the wooden area of our garden.”

The Gruffalo, which is five-feet tall, and mouse cost £1,900 and were made by wood sculptor Ben Loughrill, who also created the St Edmund Wolf which stands on the Southgate Green roundabout, in Bury.