Bolton footballers spread joy with Christmas toy run at Derian House

BOLTON Wanderers football players won big smiles when they dropped into Derian House Children’s Hospice to hand out toys to the children.

The first team squad spread a little festive cheer when they handed out gifts to children staying at the hospice.

Brothers Adam and Alix, who use Derian’s services, were thrilled to meet the players – although they admitted they are actually Liverpool fans!

The players – whose personal donations had paid for the gifts – also took a tour of the hospice and posed for pictures with staff and children.

Former Derian service user Rebecca Delaney, 25, was paying a return visit to the hospice to deliver some gifts of her own to say thank you, when she bumped into the players.

“It was a wonderful surprise, we’re delighted!” said Rebecca’s mother Linda.

Player Josh Magennis said it was an “absolute privilege” to visit Derian.

Following the visit, he said: “Unfortunately the kids here may not be able to come to football games, so it’s a chance for us to come down and put a smile on their faces.

“We can sometimes be wrapped up in our own little bubble and today has been a humbling experience that has put things into perspective. It’s been an afternoon none of us will forget.”

Mick Croskery, Community Fundraiser at Derian House, said: “We’re really grateful to the Bolton players for bringing some festive cheer into Derian. The young people were absolutely thrilled with their gifts and it means a lot to us to have their support.”

Run, Ryan, Run!

WHEN it comes to New Year’s resolutions, super supporter Ryan Walmsley gives most people a run for their money!

The Blackburn teenager has run every single day of 2018 so far – more than 1,000 miles in total – to raise money for the children and young people at Derian House Children’s Hospice.

Ryan’s epic challenge has even earned him a spot on national radio, when he was interviewed live on air by presenter Greg James on BBC Radio One’s breakfast show this morning (Thurs, 13 December).

The former Darwen Vale High School student, 19, who is now serving an apprenticeship at BAE Systems in Samlesbury, said: “It’s been tough at times – both physically challenging and emotionally draining – but doing it for Derian House has brought out in me an inner determination that I would have struggled to find otherwise.

“I’ve seen the good work Derian does and what keeps me going is knowing that somewhere down the line, what I’m doing will benefit someone.”

Ryan has run at least three miles every single day, and with three weeks still to go has already hit his 1,000-mile target. He has also smashed his fundraising goal of £1,000 and hopes to make it to £2,000 by the end of the year.

Ryan’s gruelling regime has seen him wear out four pairs of trainers, and even run through bouts of flu, sickness bugs, many blisters and several hangovers.

He has run on holiday – pounding the streets of Berlin and Munich in Germany; Rome, London and the Lake District in 2018.

But heroic Ryan has taken it all in his stride, and admits he has enjoyed much of his challenge.

“Physically I’ve got a lot fitter and I tend to do a lot of my runs at dinner time, so if I’ve had a stressful morning at work it gives me time to clear my head,” he said.

The Blackburn Harriers Running Club member also praised his family for their support.

“The unsung hero of this year has been my mum Lynne,” said Ryan, who lives at the family home in Ewood, Blackburn. “She’s done my washing every single day!

“My girlfriend Olivia has also been brilliant. She’s been the one who has motivated me when I couldn’t be bothered going for a run. She’s said: ‘Come on, get up, get dressed, let’s go.’”

Ryan first came up with the idea to run every day for Derian after taking part in a sponsored all-day circuit training session at Darwen Vale High School.

And on 1 January, 2018, Ryan decided to go one step further and started out on his very own challenge that would last 365 days.

And what next for Ryan?

“I’m looking forward to that elusive rest day on New Year’s Day,” he said.

“After that I’d like to sit back and think ‘I did a good job there’.”

Kevin Bedford, Fundraising Manager at Derian House Children’s Hospice, said: “Ryan is an absolute super star and we’re so grateful to him for supporting us in this creative way. We see lots of wild and wonderful fundraising challenges here at Derian but this has to be one of the most gruelling yet. He’s raised a terrific amount for us and it really will make a difference.

“On behalf of all of the children and young people we look after at Derian, we’d like to say a sincere thank you to Ryan – and of course to his mum Lynne for all that washing!”

Derian House is a children’s hospice which provides respite and end-of-life care to more than 350 children and young people in Lancashire and South Cumbria.

The charity looks after the whole family, with dedicated teams for sibling support, hospice services at home and bereavement counselling for parents and grandparents.

Derian’s goal is to give families of children with life-shortening and life-threatening conditions a chance to make precious memories that will last a lifetime.

Santa bikers bring joy to children’s hospice

MORE than 100 bikers armed with toys and gifts descended on Derian House Children’s Hospice at the weekend.

The generous Rivington Barn Bikers travelled en masse from Rivington to Chorley to deliver gifts for the children and young people, which they had collected over the past few months.

Organiser Craig Hayward, said: “We started this last year on behalf of my son who spent time at Derian House a long time ago. I just wanted to give something back and do something to make the kids happy.

“This year we decided to do it again and we have had twice as many taking part. The biker community is amazing. You mention the word charity and they’re there. They made this possible.”

The bikers formed a human train – stretching from the car park, through reception and down the hospice bedroom corridor – to pass down each present – all while singing ‘Jingle Bells’ and shouting Ho Ho Ho!

Children staying at the hospice watched from the hospice front steps, thrilled at the extraordinary scene unfolding before them.

Caroline Taylor, Communications and Marketing Manager at Derian House Children’s Hospice, said: “We were absolutely overwhelmed by this generous gesture from the Rivington Barn Bikers. The children staying at the hospice couldn’t believe their eyes, they were absolutely spellbound – it was joyous.

“On behalf of Derian House, thank you to each and every one of the guys who came. These presents will put big smiles on our children’s faces.”

Visit to join Derian’s Christmas Campaign.

Remembering loved ones at Derian’s festive concert

HUNDREDS flocked to an uplifting Christmas concert held at Blackburn Cathedral on Friday.

Derian House Children’s Hospice annual Lights of Love event saw the spectacular cathedral illuminated by hundreds of Christmas tree lights – each one representing the life of a loved one.

The event also included festive carols performed by St Elisabeth’s Parish Choir, Reddish. One highlight being a poignant rendition of Silent Night sung partly in German – reminiscent of the Christmas Day Truce – to mark 100 years since the end of the First World War.

Staff and volunteers from Derian House got involved too, with The Derian Singers choir performing “This is Me” from hit film The Greatest Showman.

Brothers Michael, 21, and Andrew Mills, 19 – who both use services at Derian House – signed the song words in Makaton for the crowd.

Play It Forward Brass Band Ensemble – a group of who give up their time to make music and raise funds to make a positive difference to other people’s lives – also took part.

David Robinson, Chief Executive of Derian House Children’s Hospice, said: “2018 has been a wonderful year for Derian House. In our 25th anniversary year we have supported more than 350 families from across the North West to make happy memories.

“It has been a year of love and laughter. Of course, there have also been sad times. And Lights of Love is also about remembering the lives of friends and family who are no longer with us.”

Derian House Children’s Hospice is based in Chorley and looks after children and young people with life-limiting conditions across Lancashire and South Cumbria. The charity provides respite and end-of-life care and aims to help families create precious memories that will last a lifetime.

The Derian House Singers                              CREDIT: Michael Sewell Photography


Leyland’s new shop offers bargains galore

Leyland shoppers can grab a bargain with Derian House’s new charity shop focusing on fashion and furniture coming to town.

We opened a new store in Hough Lane on Friday – just in time for the Christmas rush.

Our previous store, on the opposite side of the street, closed its doors last week. It has been replaced with a bigger, brighter revamped store with a fresh modern look.

The new shop will focus on best-selling stock, including women’s fashion, gifts, trinkets and furniture.

There will also be a full range of Derian House branded products, from Derian mugs and candles to chocolate and pin badges.

And during the festive season there will also be Derian’s very own Christmas cards, calendars, diaries and sweet treats.

The new shop has been decorated with our trademark bright colours and has a TV screen showing the charity’s latest news and events.

Remembering loved ones at ‘Lights of Love’

Inspirational youngsters will lead an uplifting Christmas service to help raise funds for Derian House Children’s Hospice.

Brothers Michael, 21, and Andrew Mills, 19, who both use services at Derian, will translate the modern classic “This is Me” into Makaton sign language for the crowd.

The song, which features in the box office hit The Greatest Showman, is being performed by the Derian Singers, a choir made up of 22 staff from the hospice who have been rehearsing for weeks.

Lights of Love Service is Derian’s annual Christmas concert, being held on Friday, 7 December at Blackburn Cathedral, from 7.30pm and is open to everyone.

This year’s service also features performances by The Choir of St Elisabeth’s Parish Church in Reddish and Play It Forward Brass Band Ensemble – a group of musicians from all walks of life who give up their time to make music and raise funds to make a positive difference to other people’s lives.

23-year-old Katy Galbraith, who also visits Derian, will switch on the ‘lights of love’ on the cathedral Christmas tree to remember all the friends and family who are no longer with us.

Free tickets to Lights of Love can be reserved by emailing or by calling the hospice on 01257 271271.

Month: December 2018