A remarkable £19,000 grant has been made by Cornwall Mark Masons from across the county to boost the vital fundraising for Cornish healthcare charity Cornwall Hospice Care in support of Mount Edgcumbe Hospice in St. Austell and St. Julia’s Hospice in Hayle. The grant has been organised nationally in memory of the recent passing of His Royal Highness, The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh.

The grant was approved by the Trustees of the Mark Benevolent Fund and decided by the membership of nineteen Mark lodges throughout Cornwall as part of a £1.3million wider grant from the Mark Benevolent Fund, the official charity of the Grand Lodge of Mark Master Masons. Money was distributed to more than 250 hospices across England and Wales, including Cornwall Hospice Care, to celebrate the life of the Duke, himself a Freemason, who died in April.

Individual cheques were presented to each hospice, Mount Edgcumbe Hospice received the sum of £9,000 and St. Julia’s Hospice £10,000. These presentations were made by the Provincial Grand Master for Cornwall Mark Master Masons, Right Worshipful Brother Kevin John Hicks, supported by his Executive Team and also joined by local Mark lodge representatives.

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The picture above was taken at Mount Edgcumbe Hospice in St Austell and features (Back Row) L-R: Harvey Sanders, Simon Trevains, Andy Matthews, Peter Furness (Assistant Provincial Grand Master), Right Worshipful Brother Kevin John Hicks (Provincial Grand Master), Peter Johns (Deputy Provincial Grand Master), Mick Headleand, Mike Bhogall and David Langridge) (Front Row L-R: Kneeling Graham Clarke (Finance Director), Oli Hoare (Head of Fundraising), Katie Vercoe (Student Nurse), Kirsty Thomas (Nurse), Janet Barnie (Ward Clerk), Dr Alex Miller and Dr Gianni Dongo.

Kevin commented: “On behalf of the Mark Benevolent Fund, we are absolutely thrilled the Mark lodge members of the province, have chosen to support Cornwall Hospice Care and their two wonderful and remarkable hospices. We are all aware of the impact the Coronavirus pandemic has taken on all local charities across Cornwall and beyond and sincerely hope this fitting grant will go some way to help enhance patient care and provide vital improved facilities for those in need, together with support for their families. Mount Edgcumbe and St. Julia’s Hospices have both played vital roles in caring for my personal family members in past years, so I genuinely know from first-hand experience, the wonderful care given by the amazing and dedicated staff and volunteers at both locations”

Worshipful Brother Peter Furness (the Assistant Provincial Grand Master) said: “It has genuinely been a memorable experience representing the Mark brethren from across Cornwall, in visiting both of these remarkable hospices. The Mark Benevolent Fund has created a fitting tribute to The Duke of Edinburgh who would genuinely have loved to have seen these extra special hospices supported in his name. The essential and vital work carried out by both hospices, together with their remarkable staff and volunteers, is simply outstanding and totally reassuring for our local communities here in Cornwall.”

Paul Brinsley, Cornwall Hospice Care Chief Executive commented in response; “The last 18 months have been extremely tough for our charity as we continued to keep our two Cornish hospices open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We relied on the generosity of our community and on the continuing support of organisations such as the Mark Master Masons of Cornwall and as a result were able to care for 404 inpatients at Mount Edgcumbe in St. Austell and St Julia’s hospice at Hayle in the 2020/21 financial year. These donations and indeed the friendship of the Mark Master Masons, has helped with our resilience through the pandemic and now with our revival as we plan ahead and continue to provide services to terminally ill people and their carers and families. Cornwall Hospice Care was delighted to receive the grant and were humbled by the continued and generous support the Hospice community receives from the Cornish Freemasons, year on year. We genuinely thank you for your support.”

Oliver Hoare, head of Cornwall Hospice Care fundraising remarked; “On behalf of all of us at Cornwall Hospice Care, may I express our sincere thanks for the incredible generous donation of £19,000, split as £10,000 for St Julia’s Hospice, Hayle and £9,000 for Mount Edgcumbe Hospice, St Austell, from the Mark Master Masons of Cornwall. We really cannot thank the Freemasonry movement enough and in particular, the Cornwall Mark Masons for their incredible support for both of our wonderful hospices.

The picture below was taken at St Julia’s Hospice and features (Back Row) L-R: Stan Suthern, Jonathon Bray, Simon Trevains, Paul Kirkman, Peter Furness (Assistant Provincial Grand Master), Right Worshipful Brother Kevin John Hicks (Provincial Grand Master), Peter Johns (Deputy Provincial Grand Master), Geoff Webster, Roger Quinn, Roger Freeman, Andy Matthews, and Oliver Hoare Head of fundraising for Cornwall Hospice Care. Front Row L-R: Standing – Della Ashman ((Healthcare Assistant) and Michelle Morse (Healthcare Assistant). Kneeling – Sarah Perry (Housekeeper), Colette Pashley (Housekeeper), Mary McKenna (Nurse) and Dr Sarah Ashley.

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