The Moonlight and Memories Walk, which will be held by St Catherine’s Hospice on 1 July, will be a fitting tribute to a long-standing volunteer, Barry Ashton.Advertisement
Barry was not only a much-loved father, grandad and friend, but he was also a dedicated volunteer to the hospice, lending them a helping hand on numerous occasions.
Barry helped out at fundraising events, including the charity’s annual Christmas Festival, after his wife was cared for by the hospice in 1999.
The Moonlight and Memories Walk, which is a 10-mile circular walk, was most special to him, and he was always keen to get the whole family involved.
In October 2016, Barry sadly passed away in the hospice that he was so fond of, and now his daughters Louise Betteridge and Janice Walmsley, vow to do him proud and pay tribute to their beloved Dad with this year’s Moonlight and Memories.
The walk will set off from the hospice grounds in Lostock Hall at 10pm, with a four-mile family-friendly route also on offer.
Louise Betteridge, Mum-of- two, from Penwortham, said: “Dad has been helping at the Moonlight and Memories Walk for as long as we can all remember, and it was one of his favourite annual events at the hospice.
“Dad’s main job was taking phone calls on the day to advise people of the plans, checking if anyone needed assistance whilst the event was underway, and helping to check that everyone was back safe at the end.
“He loved the buzz of it all and was well known for his laughter and his supply of sweets.
“As a family we have helped with the registration and other jobs, and the youngest member, my 12-year- old niece Libby, is very proud to help hand out the medals when the walkers return to the hospice.
“Her sister Tilly and my son William, who are both 16, want to help out like their grandad, as they have many happy memories of doing that with him, and my husband Anthony and Janice’s husband Michael also get involved setting things up, so it really is a family affair.”
Janice Walmsley said: “As a family we have had both mum and dad cared for at the hospice, and on both occasions the staff supported us as a family and our parents as they came to the end of their time.
“The medical support and the emotional support for us all was amazing, and both mum and dad were relaxed and happy to be in the hospice when they got to the time it was needed.
“It feels more like an extension of your home than a hospital or hospice, and we will continue to support the hospice at all the events, as that is what dad wanted,.
“We are really grateful that he got his wish of ending his days in a place that helped him when mum died and it was also a place where he made many wonderful friends and had lots of happy times laughing and making wonderful memories.”
Read more: A group of friends walk the Guild Wheel for St Catherine’s Hospice
Norman Cutler, fundraiser at St Catherine’s, said: “Barry was certainly one of the stars of our annual Moonlight and Memories Walk, and he will be sadly missed at this year’s event.
“His family have been a great support to St Catherine’s over the years, with Barry at the helm, and their presence at this summer’s event – through both taking part and volunteering – will be a fitting tribute to him.
“The whole community is invited along to share with us this very special night to remember.”
Registration for the event is £15 for adults and £10 for under-18s, for either route, and people are encouraged to raise as much in sponsorship as possible.
You can sign up by visiting the website, emailing the hospice or calling 0177 2324540.
Do you know St Catherine’s Hospice? Will you be taking part in the fundraiser? Let us know in the comments below