Time Garden Cycle Tour

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A team of six colleagues from the East of England Co-op Funeral Services are taking part in a cycling challenge this September, to raise funds for a special garden at Colchester General Hospital.

On Tuesday 18 September, the 33 mile bike tour will take them across Essex, from West Mersea to Manningtree, before crossing the finishing line at the hospital's Time Garden. 

The Time Garden is being developed to provide a peaceful and quiet place for patients coming to the end of life to spend time alone or with their families and friends. To create the Time Garden will cost around £160,000. A total of £120,000 has already been raised, with the East of England Co-op Funeral Services team hoping to raise a further £2,500 to help them towards the final total. 

Luke Harrison, Funeral Director at the East of England Co-op Funeral Services Wimpole Road branch, explained: "Many of the team are cycling as a personal thank you for the support Colchester Hospital has provided themselves and their families over the years. I myself am cycling in memory of my Nan who passed away this year at the Hospital.

“The team and I are incredibly grateful for the donations and support we have received so far.”

Those taking to the road will be cycling on bikes kindly donated by local charity Bikes for Africa. Colleagues will also be racking up the miles on static bikes in the East of England Co-op’s Supermarket at Stanway.

Lead Cancer Nurse, Beverley Pickett said: "The Time Garden is so nearly finished, it just needs a last push to get it open.

"The benefits it will bring our patients and their families cannot be underestimated. It will be a private space away from the ward that is calm, relaxing and contemplative. Thank you so much to the East of England Co-op Funeral Services team for their continued support and I look forward to greeting them at the finish line."

Donations can be made at East of England Co-op Funeral Branches across Essex, or online via JustGiving.