Boscastle Buoys' Story

The Boscastle Buoys formed in around 2009 after a group of locals, mainly from Boscastle discovered that as well as sharing a drink in the local pub, the Napoleon Inn in Boscastle, they also enjoyed singing.  They were originally called the Boscastle Boys until one of their members came up with the idea of changing it to Boscastle Buoys to represent a buoy in the sea, with Boscastle being a fishing village.

One of the Buoys was treated and supported by Cornwall Hospice Care’s Mount Edgcumbe Hospice and has since died.  As he received such great care the Boscastle Buoys pledged to raise money for Cornwall Hospice Care and collect donations wherever they sing.

“We want to shake the bucket for Cornwall Hospice Care

With their compelling repertoire of sea shanties and traditional Cornish songs, the team raise money for Cornwall Hospice Care. David Pimm, one of the singers, explains; ‘We sing at events all round North Cornwall and when we do we shake a bucket in support of Cornwall Hospice Care.  As well as singing in their local pub, the Boscastle Buoys are also asked to sing throughout Cornwall.  Rog explained; “We are often asked to perform at a certain venue and we say, well, can we bring the bucket along? We want to shake the bucket for Cornwall Hospice Care.”

Pete added; “We know that the Hospice is very compassionate, the staff that work there are exceptionally good carers and nurses and we just know that every penny, every pound that gets put in the bucket is put to a very good cause and used most efficiently. It’s channelled in the right direction and used at the sharp end for what is no doubt a wonderful quality of care.”

Rog goes on to say; “You don’t have to go very far before you find somebody who’s had to go there or they know somebody that’s been treated at Mount Edgcumbe, it means a lot to people around here.”

Since starting to sing for Cornwall Hospice Care, the Boscastle Buoys have raised over £10,000 for the charity, which they are very proud of.  Pete said; “We would like to say a big ‘Thank you’ to everybody who has supported us since we’ve been raising money for the Hospice.

“every penny, every pound that gets put in the bucket…it’s channelled in the right direction and used at the sharp end

for what is no doubt a wonderful quality of care

Rose Beattie, Cornwall Hospice Care’s Fundraising Manager, accepted the latest donation from the group at the show; “The Boscastle Buoys are great. They bring in a steady stream of donations for our charity and in support of our two adult hospices at Mount Edgcumbe in St Austell and St Julia’s in Hayle. They have a massive amount of fun enjoying their singing, while also remembering their friend and we truly appreciate their remembering us and the work the teams at Cornwall Hospice Care do. All the money they raise comes from Cornwall and is then spent by us for and in Cornwall.  It’s a good Cornish partnership.”

If you have been touched by the Boscastle Buoys story and would like to help Cornwall Hospice Care, you can make a donation, hold a fundraising event, donate your unwanted items to our shops, join our weekly lottery or help by volunteering for the charity.

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Bernadette's Story

Cancer doesn’t happen to people like Victor and me, it happens to faceless, nameless people in other towns and other countries.

When Victor, who was an artist, told me two years ago that he had noticed a lump on his chest wall I didn’t make much of it. Victor knew it needed attention. He was very fortunate that he saw a doctor who suspected sarcoma rather than misdiagnosing it as a fatty lump.

The life we had changed when Victor received a phone call to tell him the results of the CT scan he had had earlier in the day. The doctor told him that the lump was possibly a sarcoma which would be surgically removed. I was absolutely stunned. I couldn’t believe that Victor might have cancer. Further tests and a biopsy confirmed it was a soft tissue sarcoma.

Victor and I sat in disbelief when we met the consultant and sarcoma specialist nurse a little later. He told us that he and another surgeon would operate to remove the tumour in what was to be a major procedure. This would be followed by radiotherapy.

We thought of the cancer as an uninvited guest in our home. It over-shadowed everything that we had taken for granted. After the surgery and radiotherapy we were able to live with some normality- Victor returned to his studio to paint and I returned to work.

Victor’s first scan following the operation showed something that needed investigating. A CT guided biopsy confirmed a new tumour. This was in May 2013. Further radiotherapy followed but more tumours appeared. There was more radiotherapy then chemotherapy. Victor had three hospital admissions, two following chemotherapy and one for a tumour which was bleeding.

In June of this year (2014) Victor began to decline.

In the days leading up to his death he spoke openly about dying. On June 18th Victor was due to have a scan and a frank discussion about his disease. I was concerned that I was no longer able to care for Victor safely at home and following some phone calls by the consultant we were instructed to go straight to St. Julia’s Hospice. I was immensely relieved. I knew Victor would receive all the medical attention he needed. When we arrived at St. Julia’s I said “It’s brilliant that we’re here isn’t it Victor”.

We were only at St. Julia’s for a short period. Victor died the next day.

The care and compassion was outstanding. I was able to stay with Victor and during the night if I had any concerns I simply rang the bell and he was attended to. The doctors and nurses spoke openly about Victor’s condition and what they were doing. When Victor died, the compassion and dignity continued.

Alongside the professionalism was warmth. Victor and I were able to be “Victor and Bernadette” again while at the hospice rather than patient and carer.

I am very sad that Victor has died but I gain great comfort from the knowledge that he died in the safety and warmth of St. Julia’s.

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Diane's Story

In October 2014, Cornwall Hospice Care launched a new awareness campaign aimed at explaining the work of the charity through the stories of those touched by our two Cornish hospices.

Diane was one of the first people wanting to use this campaign to tell the story of her family and their experience of our care.

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