Wednesday, 10 August 2022

Hospice memorial benches smashed

Hospice memorial benches smashed

TWO memorial benches at the Sue Ryder hospice in Nettlebed were smashed beyond repair by vandals.

Police investigating the incident at Joyce Grove said there was evidence of drug-taking nearby.

This is the latest in a spate of vandalism in the grounds of the hospice in which window panes in a summer house were smashed, broken bottles and litter were left lying about and donation bags were ripped open and the contents strewn about.

The charity allows members of the public to walk through the gardens, which are private, but says it may reconsider this if the problem persists.

In a letter to the Henley Standard in June, hospice director Stewart Marks said: “The grounds of the hospice are lovingly maintained by our groundsman and volunteers to create a peaceful, calm place for patients, their families and friends to enjoy whilst in our care.

“Although we allow access for the public to walk through the grounds, they are private and, as such, we expect people to respect this.

“We do not wish to close the grounds but may have to consider this if the damage and disrespectful use of them continues.

“We are grateful for the support Thames Valley Police are giving us in helping to solve these issues but would ask the local community to please only access the grounds if they can do so respectfully.”

The charity has also had to lock a donation station at the hospice at night following several thefts.

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