SIXTY years of fundraising have helped a charity raise £3million for staff and patients at St Cross.
When the Friends of St Cross was founded by a group of volunteers in 1955, Anthony Eden had just taken over as Prime Minister from Winston Churchill, Elvis topped the charts and the average house price was £2,000.
Since then the group has spent a grand total of £3,054,723 on equipment donations and support for projects at the Hospital of St Cross and the community and mental health services in Rugby.
This year the charity has raised nearly £50,000 for its Diamond Jubilee Appeal to fund a new blood-taking unit.
Joan Jesson, president of the Friends and former General Manager at the Hospital of St Cross, said: “Throughout my time at the hospital I have been proud to work with the Friends and to see the relationship with the Trust blossom.
“The most memorable donations made in my time as chairperson of the Friends were the support we gave to opening of the diabetes centre in Swift House, at St Cross, and the retinal screening van which was a joint venture with the UHCW charity and serves people throughout Coventry and Warwickshire.”
Andy Hardy, chief executive of University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust, said: “We are deeply grateful for the support of the Friends of St Cross which has done so much for the Hospital of St Cross through its fantastic record of donations and the superb voluntary services which has helped us expand our service in Rugby.”
St Cross chief Juliet Starkey said: “As well as the financial support, Friends volunteers also make a great difference to the patients with services such as helping hands in theatre for cataract operations and new services such as Dementia Friends and patient feeding.”