THE first matron of St Mary’s Hospice has died.

The Ulverston-based hospice, which supports people with terminal illnesses, said Joan Pollit had died earlier this month.

The hospice said she wanted the patients to live for the moment, encouraging them to find joy even in the most challenging of circumstances.

This is an ethos that St Mary’s Hospice prides themselves on still.

Val Stangoe, CEO of St Mary’s Hospice said: “We are so grateful to Joan for all her hard work in the early days and continuous support to set the hospice on such a positive pathway.”

In 1984 the founding members of the hospice, Lord Cavendish, Reverend Nick Gosswin, Margaret Berry and Clarissa Kavanagh had a vision to create a hospice in South Cumbria and within four years they had raised £600,000 which they used to create St Mary’s Hospice.

St Mary’s Hospice has continued to grow, becoming one of the largest charitable organisations in South Cumbria.

The hospice, with a running cost of £3.2million per year, also relies on its nurses, caterers, carers, gardeners and volunteers to keep the vision of its past and present members alive.

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