Castle becomes giant mantlepiece for hospice’s birthday

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Carlisle Castle was transformed into a giant mantlepiece this week to celebrate Eden Valley Hospice’s 30th birthday.

Twenty five-ft high cards decorated by local businesses, schools and members of the community were balanced on top of the 11th century ramparts to mark the occasion.

The hospice, which serves north Cumbria and south west Scotland, opened at its Durdar Road site in 1991 and ever since has been close to the hearts of people in the city.

Among those supporting the event was the Dean of Carlisle Cathedral, The Very Revd Mark Boyling, who helped hold up a card from the cathedral and Historic Quarter businesses. 

“Eden Valley Hospice does such important work for our community and it’s lovely to see all these cards thanking them,” he said.

Matt Slessor, at Armstrong Watson Accountants, said: “Eden Valley Hospice does invaluable work at the most vulnerable times in a person’s life so we were only too pleased to join in with this celebration with our card.”

The cards were originally blank, but supporters of the hospice delighted in creating artistic designs and encouraging people to sign the insides and add their own birthday greetings.

Among the businesses taking part were steel merchants Thomas Graham, Penrith Building Society, Amazon Carlisle, Saint & Co, Penrith Building Society, Cumbria Building Supplies and the University of Cumbria. Schools including Caldew, Trinity, Lanercost and Stanwix created colourful cards, too.

Professor Patricia Livsey, Chief Executive at Eden Valley Hospice, added: “We’re honoured to have so many local people joining in and celebrating our 30th anniversary with us.

“As ever, our community makes the care we provide possible, whether that be by fundraising, volunteering or donating – we couldn’t do it without you.”

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