The Mill is set to expand!

We’re excited that work is currently taking place to extend our popular café and community hub!

Since The Mill launched in November 2014 it has gone from strength to strength – with the result that demand in the cafe often exceeds capacity at peak times.

The extension will provide room for another 30 customers in a dual-use space which will also be available to hire as a function room, since the café also has over-demand for private bookings for occasions like funeral receptions, birthday celebrations and baby showers.

The plans include a new shop and for new storage and welfare facilities to be built in place of the existing out-buildings which are in poor condition.

This is exciting phase two will build on The Mill’s success in opening up the hospice to the local community, and in providing another source of regular income which is so important to the long-term sustainability of the charity, since all profits are donated to St Catherine’s.

Some funding has been sourced via charitable grants and trusts, and some capital will be borrowed in order to invest in the project.

Stephen Greenhalgh, Chief Executive of St Catherine’s Hospice, said: “It takes a huge effort to find the capital for a project like this, but the long-term benefit is regular income that is so vital to our ability to keep caring for growing numbers of local people. The financial challenge of raising the funds we need has never been greater, but The Mill phase two offers a way to continue growing this regular income-stream in a way we know already works.

“From the first campaigners and fundraisers who got St Catherine’s off the ground in the early eighties, innovation and creativity have been central to the charity’s approach. We are confident that The Mill phase two will continue this legacy, and that the investment will bring lasting benefits to the patients and families we care for and the wider Central Lancashire community. It also brings an additional benefit of creating more jobs and volunteering opportunities for local people.

“We are proud of what we have achieved so far, but are determined to move forward with our mission to help more local people facing life-shortening conditions to have quality of life, to the end of life.”

 The Mill’s achievements so far..

The Mill has achieved many varied objectives for St Catherine’s and the Central Lancashire community over the past four years, including:

  • Opening up St Catherine’s and its grounds to the public – breaking down barriers which can surround the word ‘hospice’ by making the place more accessible and familiar
  • Creating a normal and welcoming environment to be enjoyed by patients, families, and members of the public
  • Offering support for those facing serious illness or bereavement in a more informal way, via volunteer advisors, drop-in sessions and light-touch therapies
  • Strengthening the sustainability of the hospice through profits from the café, long-term leases and room hire
  • Encouraging new and ongoing support for St Catherine’s from customers who go on to become donors, fundraisers and volunteers for the charity
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