New garden room unveiled at state-of-the-art cancer facility in Huntingdon

PUBLISHED: 07:45 03 March 2017 | UPDATED: 07:45 03 March 2017

The new garden room will help to support patients who are undergoing treatment.

The new garden room will help to support patients who are undergoing treatment.

Archant

Huntingdon continues to lead the way in cancer care as plans to build a new garden room to allow patients access to wellbeing activities were revealed by Hinchingbrooke Hospital and Macmillan Cancer Support.

The new building will host services to improve patient wellbeing, during and after cancer treatment. It will sit in the courtyard of the Macmillan Woodlands Centre, a state-of-the art treatment centre, which opened to patients in August 2016 and it is hoped building work will start in the spring.

Lynda Hall, lead cancer nurse at Hinchingbrooke Hospital, said: “The impact of cancer doesn’t end when treatment does. It’s not as simple as being cured and getting back to ‘normal’. Many people have side-effects from cancer and its treatment which can have a huge impact on their life, years after treatment ends.

“That’s why we’re building the Macmillan Garden Room. It will allow us to support people in our community to live as well as possible after a cancer diagnosis.”

Macmillan estimates that about 950 people in Huntingdonshire are diagnosed with cancer each year, and more than 5,200 people are living with cancer. The charity has been working with Hinchingbrooke Health Care NHS Trust and local fundraisers since 2012 to improve cancer care for the community. Through the fundraising appeal, they built the new Macmillan Woodlands Centre where local people now receive first-class cancer treatment.

“We’ve been overwhelmed by the support from people in Huntingdon and the surrounding areas,’ explained Jess Levin, fund-raising manager for Cambridgeshire.

“From coffee mornings to classical concerts, the community has created fantastic fund-raising events to help us make the Macmillan Woodlands Centre a reality. Now, we need to concentrate on supporting people when treatment comes to an end. We know people often need help to get their life back on track after cancer. From diagnosis, through treatment and beyond, we’ll be able to offer vital support services in this stunning new space.”

Work is set to begin on the Macmillan Garden Room in the spring and the new building will have room to host group activities such as meditation. Large glass doors will slide open to a colourful garden and seating area, so people affected by cancer, and their loved ones, can relax outside when the garden room opens this summer.

Carol Croft, 55, was treated for breast cancer at Hinchingbrooke Hospital in 2011 and welcomed news of the new Macmillan Garden Room.

“The support I received from staff at Hinchingbrooke Hospital was incredible. But, when my treatment ended, suddenly, I was on my own,” she said.

“I was relieved my body was healing, but didn’t know who to talk with about my ongoing side-effects. Getting together with people who shared a similar experience was so important to me, both while I was going through treatment and for many years afterwards.

“The Macmillan Garden Room will be a fantastic addition to the Woodlands renovation project. It’s great to know that local people affected by cancer will be able to access support in a calm, non-clinical space, designed just for them.”

INFO: If you would like to raise money to help support the Macmillan Garden Room, call 0300 1000 200 or visit: www.macmillan.org.uk/donate/macmillan-projects/hinchingbrooke.

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