Wigan Warriors visit cancer patients at Royal Preston Hospital in touching tradition

Posted on - 30th December, 2023 - 8:00am | Author - | Posted in - Charities, Christmas, Fulwood, Health, People, Preston News, Sport
Wigan Warriors visited Royal Preston Hospital
Wigan Warriors visited Royal Preston Hospital. Pic: Lancashire Teaching Hospitals

Players from Wigan Warriors visited cancer patients at Rosemere Cancer Centre’s in-patient Ribblesdale Ward on December 22, giving out Christmas presents and spreading festive cheer.

The Superleague champions have visited the ward every Christmas since 2017 to raise spirits amongst patients, families and staff.

The tradition was first arranged by a long-term supporter of Rosemere and Ribblesdale, Helen Duchamp after her mum was a patient on the ward. Helen’s mum, Jill Brakewell, died of leukaemia in 2015 but was known for her love of Christmas, which Helen wanted to honour.

Read more: 1,000 Royal Preston Hospital patients receive Christmas gift

Helen’s father, Mick Brakewell, who dressed up as Santa said: “This year has been hard for a lot of people, but everyone has been so generous again, those who supplied presents, and Wigan Warriors again for giving their time. 

“It goes down a treat with patients and staff, everyone is buzzing to see the lads. It’s Helen’s way of helping out and keeping her mum’s legacy going.”

The players, captain Liam Farrell, Harry Smith, Brad O’Neil and new signing Kruise Leeming gave out Christmas presents provided by local companies including, Leyland’s Morrisons, Gee Tees in Bamber Bridge and Beeches Chocolates.

Read more: Events in Preston to be encouraged to use less noisy fireworks due to impact on pets and people

They also spent time in the Children’s Ward and Children’s Clinic, giving out mince pies and other festive treats.

Wigan Warriors also visited the Children's Ward
Wigan Warriors also visited the Children’s Ward. Pic: Lancashire Teaching Hospitals

Wigan captain, Liam Farrell said: “We’ve been coming for a few years now, and to see the smiles it puts on people’s faces, it’s very pleasing. Any time we can get down, we will do. 

“The staff work so hard, day in, day out, and for us to come down and help out, it hopefully gives them and the patients a lift. We spoke to a few of the patients who said they may get to go home for Christmas, which is great to hear. 

“The most important thing is to put smiles on people’s faces, and I think we have done.”

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