Jim’s regular gift in memory of wife Patricia

Jim Titchmarsh’s wife, Patricia, was cared for by Herriot Hospice Homecare in her final days at their home in Sowerby, Thirsk, after a long time living with multiple myeloma, a cancer of bone marrow. Jim now makes a regular gift to Herriot Hospice@The Lambert in Patricia’s memory, supporting a new facility to providing vital inpatient hospice care for Hambleton and Richmondshire.

“We were married for 57 years, after meeting in Bristol whilst completing our teacher training courses. Patricia went on to be a primary school teacher and then a teacher of adults, as well as having three children. We both have backgrounds in Yorkshire, and it was when we visited Thirsk together for Patricia’s school reunion that we loved it and decided to retire here.

“Patricia lived with her terminal illness for roughly 20 years – she would have chemotherapy treatment and go into remission, but it always came back after some time. I cared for Patricia but reached the point of physical exhaustion from handling her to help her sit up and go to the bathroom. I realised I couldn’t continue with the impossible strain that caring was putting on me, and I couldn’t provide Patricia with what she needed, which is when I sought help.”

Herriot’s growing HOME service provided care and support for Patricia in her final days, before she died in March 2023.

Jim said: “NHS care throughout her illness was wonderful, and the special support Herriot provided in her last four days, was really appreciated. I was always worried about the pain Patricia was in, but it was reassuring for me that Herriot would provide pain relief to control it as much as possible. It also meant a lot that they were on the end of the phone if I had any concerns, which I did.

“We did visit a hospice in Middlesborough which we were really impressed with and would have been happy for Patricia to have spent time there, but her quick decline didn’t allow this. It would have been a 45-minute journey for me to visit her there anyway, which is why we both supported the news of Herriot Hospice@The Lambert. If the Lambert had been open when Patricia was terminally ill, we’d have been delighted for her to be there in her final week – it would have been just a short walk from our house for me to visit frequently, and on-hand to visit in short notice. For us personally, the Lambert would have been the ideal solution.

“Patricia set up a regular gift to Herriot Hospice@The Lambert, which I’m now pleased to be continuing in her memory. She very much liked the idea of a local hospice, and after years of being grateful and impressed with health services, she felt it was a good opportunity to give something back which supports the development of something which will help a lot of people. Health services like this really can make things easier at what can be a very frightening time.

“My message for anyone affected by terminal illness is that whilst every terminal illness has its difficulties, lots can be done to help you, and you’re not going to be on your own. That’s why we committed to supporting Herriot Hospice@The Lambert and Herriot Hospice Homecare with a regular gift, so that this new resource can help local people, both practically and emotionally.”

To find out more about Herriot Hospice Homecare services, click here. To find out more about making a regular gift to Herriot Hospice@The Lambert, click here.

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