Hospital Memorial Garden nursed back to health in Redditch
In 1995 the Alexandra Hospital created a Baby Memorial Garden. The Garden was funded by the hospital League of Friends, with donations of plants and money coming also from parents. The Garden itself was created by the hospital Estates Department, centering on a design of twelve segments, one for each month of the year. Babies’ ashes can be strewn here and shrubs planted. Parents who have lost their babies through still birth or miscarriage often ask if there is a suitable memorial garden where their baby’s ashes might be strewn, or where there could be a plant in memory of their baby.
After years of use, the Garden has been carefully restored and renovated with help from hospital staff, local firms and volunteers. The Garden was re-dedicated on Friday 4th September 2009 by the Rt. Revd. Dr. John Inge, Bishop of Worcester.
Hospital chaplain, Andrew Fisher commented, “The Garden is a place where parents of all faiths or none know they can come and remember their baby - and as such it helps with the grieving process. A plaque in the Garden describes it as a place where children ‘live in our love’. The Garden will continue to be that place - a sanctuary of peace for parents.”
Bishop John said, “It is painful to imagine losing a child, perhaps especially a longed for baby, and it is wonderful that grieving parents are able to come to this memorial at the Alexandra Hospital which l pray will help them in their loss. I was delighted to rededicate this place and pray for all those who have lost children, whom I commend to God’s love in Jesus.”
Chaplains minister across the three hospitals in the Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust: The Alexandra Hospital, Redditch, Kidderminster Hospital and Worcestershire Royal Hospital, Worcester. They help NHS Trusts fulfil their obligation to ensure that the privacy, dignity, religious and cultural beliefs of their patients is respected. Chaplains offer support at times of crisis or distress, regardless of your faith, beliefs or situation. They also offer support for the emotional and spiritual well-being of patients, visitors and staff. Chaplains are there to listen to your questions about meaning, purpose, suffering and loss. Chaplains provide a listening ear, confidentiality, acceptance, support, prayer and religious ceremonies.
If you are coming into hospital, and would appreciate a visit from a chaplain, chaplains are available 24/7 through the hospital switchboards or via ward staff. Similarly, if you would like to help the work of the chaplains as a volunteer we would also love to hear from you:
The Revd. Andrew Fisher,
The Alexandra Hospital, Redditch
The Revd. Dr. David Southall,
Worcestershire Royal Hospital, Worcester
The Revd. Max Shepherd,
Chaplaincy Services Leader,
The Diocese of Worcester is one of 44 dioceses in the Church of England. It covers an area of 671 square miles and includes parishes in the County of Worcestershire, the Metropolitan Borough of Dudley, and a few parishes in northern Gloucestershire, south east Wolverhampton and Sandwell.