Dodds welcomes funding for major Hospice project

Finance Minister Sammy Wilson, North Belfast MP Nigel Dodds, architect Dawson Stelfox, Hospice chief executive Dame Judith Hill, Hospice president Paul Clark, Health Minister Edwin Poots and Hospice Chairman Billy Webb. INNT 28-503CON
Finance Minister Sammy Wilson, North Belfast MP Nigel Dodds, architect Dawson Stelfox, Hospice chief executive Dame Judith Hill, Hospice president Paul Clark, Health Minister Edwin Poots and Hospice Chairman Billy Webb. INNT 28-503CON

North Belfast MP Nigel Dodds has welcomed the announcement by Health Minister Edwin Poots of a substantial contribution of £2.7million towards the Northern Ireland Hospice redevelopment appeal.

Speaking after attending the announcement at the Somerton House, site of the new-build project, Mr Dodds said: “The announcement of this funding is very good news indeed. The Hospice has been a shining beacon of care and support for families for almost 30 years. I have greatly valued its location in my North Belfast constituency. I know how much it is appreciated by families who have been supported with palliative and end of life care for a loved one.

“I recently raised the issue of the Hospice new-build appeal in a meeting with the Health Minister. He assured me that he was pursuing the potential for a contribution from his Department and I warmly welcome the announcement of this substantial capital investment.”

He added: “Along with contributions from Belfast City Council, Newtownabbey Borough Council and others, this grant is a major boost to the Hospice’s appeal which seeks to raise £11m for a new facility at Somerton House. I welcome that other public and private bodies, community and voluntary sector groups and individuals and families are continuing to support the ‘buy-a-brick’ campaign and I encourage each and every contribution. This is a very worthy project and is very worthy of support.”

The new hospice facility will provide 18 beds in single en-suite rooms with supporting facilities for staff, families and volunteers; a new day hospice facility capable of sustaining the current level of support and clinical interventions in an enhanced environment; a dedicated education and resource centre and on-site parking.