St Barnabas Hospice has announced the return of its adored Light Up a Life campaign, supported by local businessman Finn Dillon, owner of Lincoln’s Tower Hotel, who has a personal connection to the cause.
The Light Up a Life campaign will be taking place on the 21st of November at 7:30 p.m. The event will begin with the hospice’s touching annual Torchlight Procession, starting at Clayton Sports Ground. This unique and iconic celebration is an opportunity for the community to join the Hospice in remembering loved ones.
Once all torches are lit, the procession, led by the RAF Waddington Pipe Band, will commence. The community will journey past the Inpatient Unit, pausing for a moment of reflection, before moving on to the Lincoln Cathedral. The event concludes with a service of celebration and reflection, where the Tree of Life will be illuminated.
Light Up a Life offers the community an opportunity to reflect and remember a loved one lost by dedicating a light, in their name, to shine brightly on the St Barnabas Tree of Life outside Lincoln Cathedral. Anyone is welcome to dedicate a light, not just those affected by hospice care.
Every year, the campaign is supported by local family businesses, including The Tower Hotel in Lincoln’s Bailgate. The continued support from the hotel and restaurant is especially poignant as the new owner, Finn Dillon, is honouring his mother, Philly, who sadly died in the hospice earlier this year.
“Philly’s first diagnosis of Stage 3 Breast Cancer came in 2009 when I was only ten years old. That same year, I remember watching the St Barnabas Torchlight Procession. Although, as a young boy, I had no idea what a huge impact St Barnabas would have on our family in the future.
“Every year since her diagnosis, Philly and her team offered mulled wine and soup from The Tower Hotel to participants of the Torchlight Procession in support of the charity that would one day bring her and her family much-needed support.
“Sadly, after years of treatment, Philly’s cancer returned for a third time in 2020. The incredible care of St Barnabas allowed us one last miracle period, and we will be forever grateful. We knew she was finally safe. Her final month with us at St Barnabas provided endless moments of laughter, deep reflection, and the incredible gift of goodbye.
“I am comforted to know many people taking part in Light Up a Life may have had similar experiences to my family and me, and we are joined together by an understanding of the incredible work St Barnabas does.”
Join Finn in dedicating a light to honour loved ones no longer with us and help the hospice care for more people, like Philly, in the future. To do so, please visit: https://stbarnabashospice.co.uk/Light-up-a-life/.
The St Barnabas Tree of Life is kindly donated by Doddington Hall. Members of the St Barnabas Hospice Fundraising team have already chosen the exact tree which will shine outside Lincoln Cathedral for the duration of the festive period.
The Tree of Life will be adorned with dedicated lights and messages of love. For a small donation, participants are welcome to write a message on the evening and tie it to the tree in memory of a loved one lost.
This year, both the Lincoln Cathedral and the Church of St Mary Magdelene will be open following the Torchlight Procession. St Barnabas staff and volunteers will be available to provide additional support and a space of reflection for participants.
Caroline Swindin, Head of Fundraising and Lottery at St Barnabas Hospice said:
“Each year it is such an emotional event, seeing so many people with torches and lanterns through the streets of Lincoln joined together in remembrance of loved ones lost. The blessing at the Inpatient Unit is an incredibly moving moment that we know is important to our patients, many of whom gather outside with their families and our nurses.
“We look forward to welcoming hundreds of people from the community on the evening, including Finn and his family, who will be heading up the Procession.”
Due to crowd management, pre-registration and pre-order of lanterns and torches are required. To register for the Torchlight Procession on 21st November, visit https://stbarnabashospice.co.uk/events/torchlight/.
Registrations will close on Sunday, 19th November.
St Barnabas Hospice urges people who are unable to attend the Torchlight Procession to visit the Tree when they can for a moment of reflection for loved ones lost.