The charity’s annual Forget-me-not appeal is underway with its traditional metal garden blooms now joined by an online meadow option for the first time. People wanting to dedicate a flower to a loved one can still choose to plant a striking steel flower at home or go virtual and help fill the field with flowers.
Woodlands Hospice Individual Giving Manager Carole Riley said: “Our virtual meadow is a new and exciting option for anyone wanting to dedicate a Forget-me-not to someone special without having to leave the house to do it. Ironically, we’d planned this long before the coronavirus outbreak but now with restrictions on gatherings, we very much need to help bridge the shortfall from our cancelled events.
“We hope this option will help towards raising the £4,000 we need each day to continue our specialist, free-of-charge service for patients and their families. Of course those wanting to buy one of our beautiful handcrafted metal flowers can still do so.”
Schoolteacher Gemma Grainger is one of them. Five years on from losing her nan Margaret Carr, Gemma is joined by daughters seven-year-old Harleigh and three-year-old Arisia each year, to remember her.
Gemma said: “Harleigh was just short of two when my nan passed away, so it’s about keeping the memory going for her and having that flower in summer.
“The girls go out, talk to it and put it in different places around the garden. They know what the Forget-me-not is for and why we do it. I have my memories, but I do it to keep the memories alive for them. And it’s nice because it’s the whole family – around 15 of us who all come along as well.”
Although it’s not known what the situation will be in August this year as far as groups arriving for their flowers, Carole is keen to make sure people can collect their Forget-me-nots. “We’ll be confirming dates for viewing and collecting our metal flowers,” she said. “But whatever happens we’ll find a way to make sure people purchasing these will be able to have them at home. One way or another.”
To dedicate either a virtual or steel bloom to a loved one, or to find out more visit www.woodlandshospice.org/forgetmenot2020.