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Hospice seeks land to root memorial woodland in as part of new partnership

A three-way partnership between local charity, Iain Rennie Grove House Hospice Care (IRGH), NHBC (National House Building Council), and St Albans company, Pearce Recycling, was launched with a tree-planting event in the hospice's gardens at the end of March, but the venture needs the support of a local landowner to properly bear fruit.

The partnership will see the creation of a memorial woodland in the St Albans area for the bereaved families and friends of former patients, as long as the donation of an area of land can be secured on which to plant the trees. This will help raise money to fund IRGH's essential nursing services for people with life-limiting illnesses. The scheme was set up by NHBC as a final part of its 75th anniversary celebrations, with the business this year celebrating three quarters of a century of raising standards in UK house-building to protect homeowners.

To formally bed in the partnership, a team of NHBC staff from the St Albans area visited Grove House recently to plant trees and shrubs by the newly laid Path of Life in the charity's gardens. Through Pearce, NHBC is initially donating 75 trees to IRGH and pledging its ongoing support.

Hospice seeks land to root memorial woodland L-R: Teresa Brothers, Pearce Recycling; Linda Petrons,
IRGH; Tom Howard, NHBC; Sue Hobley, IRGH

Linda Petrons, Corporate Fundraiser for Iain Rennie Grove House Hospice Care, said:

"We are most grateful to NHBC and Pearce Recycling for their generous help and support. This is just the beginning of our association, and our future plans include planting a memorial woodland in the area. We are currently looking for approximately an acre of land in the hospice catchment area of St Albans, Harpenden or Dacorum, where supporters can plant a tree in memory of a loved one."

Isabel Hudson, NHBC's Executive Chairman, said:

"NHBC prides itself on being a corporately responsible company with excellent green credentials, gaining a Silver award in the recent BITC 2012 CR Index, and our arrangement with Pearce is already essential in minimising our environmental impact. By bringing our three organisations together, we are simply ensuring that any potential benefits are maximised to the full, creating essential longer-term funding for a fantastic local cause, emotional support for bereaved families and some immediate pleasure to users of the Grove House gardens."

Simon Pearce, Managing Director of Pearce Recycling, said:

"Pearce Recycling has been NHBC's recycling provider for 11 years. We are delighted to be a key part of this partnership which will benefit our local community and while improving the environment. We wanted to support a local charity and we knew about the tremendous service that Iain Rennie Grove House offers to local patients with cancer and life limiting illnesses, and about their memorial woodland project, so the hospice was an obvious choice for our support."

Under their 'Paper Planet' service, Pearce Recycling donates trees each year to NHBC and other scheme members to plant, to help with carbon offsetting, based on the amount of paper recycled. Pearce will source trees and shrubs for IRGH as needed, on behalf of NHBC.

If any individual or company has land to spare and would like to help create an area of tranquil memorial woodland, be part of improving the local environment and help provide vital hospice nursing services, please contact Linda Petrons on 01442 820721 or lpetrons@irhh.org.

News Date: 22/03/12