Patients at Holy Cross Hospital will benefit from the purchase of a new ambulance, thanks to the fundraising achievements of the Friends of Holy Cross.

Staff, patients and supporters of the hospital welcomed the arrival of the new vehicle at a reception outside Holy Cross on Friday 28 February, with the chair of the Friends group handing over the keys to Sister Mary Agnes, Trustee with special responsibility for the Hospital.

Thanking the Friends group, Dr White, Chief Executive at Holy Cross said: “Social outings are key to enhancing the quality of life for our patients and specialist appointments at other hospitals are often required as part of a patient’s care. We simply could not purchase an ambulance like this without substantial financial help. I would like to thank everyone who has organised or taken part in a sponsored walk, bike ride, quiz night or any other activity for us. We are truly grateful for your contribution.”

The ambulance is especially adapted for Holy Cross’s patients who have highly complex neurological disabilities, with particular attention given to their comfort and medical needs.

Torquil Sligo-Young, the chair of the Friends of Holy Cross said: “Our amazing volunteers organise a full calendar of fundraising activities throughout the year and I’m grateful to their fantastic ideas and ever more creative ways of raising money for this excellent cause. We have had tennis tournaments, music performances, wine tastings and golf days, to name just a few. I would also like to give my thanks to an anonymous benefactor who donated a large sum of money to the Friends. It’s an absolute pleasure to see all the effort and support translated into a brand-new ambulance for the patients and to hand over the keys today. I wish them many happy trips out in it.”

Holy Cross Hospital, based in Haslemere, provides specialist care to 40 highly dependent patients with a range of neurological conditions resulting from serious strokes, accidents and other causes. The hospital is a centre of excellence in its field with an innovative approach that pushes the limits of patients’ recovery. The hospital was established by the Congregation of the Daughters of the Cross over 100 years ago and they continue to play a role in its life today.

The Friends of Holy Cross Hospital raises money throughout the year with activities and events in and around Haslemere as well as at the hospital itself. It welcomes new volunteers and publishes a regular newsletter with information about up-coming events and news about how donations support the hospital.

The hospital formally received the ambulance on Friday morning, with Mr Sligo-Young, Chief Executive Dr Ross White, Sister Mary Agnes as well as other staff and representatives from the hospital. Father David Murphy gave a blessing for the ambulance. The ceremony was followed by refreshments and a mass in the hospital’s chapel.