Christmas cheer comes to hospital

VIDEO Deck the halls! Christmas today arrived at Ipswich Hospital after the Evening Star teamed up with the community to spread some festive cheer.Thanks to Ipswich Asda and the town's Lions Club, the hospital is getting a dazzling spruce up and children's toys.

DECK the halls!

Christmas today arrived at Ipswich Hospital after the Evening Star teamed up with the community to spread some festive cheer.

Thanks to Ipswich Asda and the town's Lions Club, the hospital is getting:

A fully decorated accident and emergency department

A 20-foot outside Christmas tree with lights

£300 of toys for the children's day surgery unit at the soon-to-open Garrett Anderson treatment centre.

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The A&E department thought it would be having a gloomy Christmas this year after its old set of decorations were lost or stolen.

But staff at Asda stepped in and yesterday provided and put up trees, tinsel, lights and baubles.

It has decorated the main waiting area, the children's waiting area, the nurse stations and the main corridor.

It is the last year the A&E team will have in their current department before moving to the £26million Garrett Anderson Centre in January. It will take the decorations with it for next year.

Suzanne Gregory, play specialist, said: “Hopefully this will put a smile on the faces of patients who come in over Christmas.

“Now we have got a lovely set a decorations we will be able to bring them out again year after year.”

Meanwhile, toys a plenty were donated to Raedwald Day Surgery Unit, a children's day surgery area opening in the Garrett Anderson Centre.

The current Foxhall Day Surgery Unit at the hospital does not have a separate area for children but at the Raedwald centre there will be a paediatric ward area, play area, operating theatre and recovery area.

The Lions Club donated cash for toys for children of all ages, including musical instruments, puzzles, books and soft toys.

Alison Whittaker, paediatric team leader and descendant of Elizabeth Garrett Anderson - the country's first female doctor, said: “We must say a big thank you. It's nice to have brand new things to take over to our new department.”

The Lions Club gave £850 to the hospital for the toys and a Christmas tree for the car park.

It is the second year the hospital will have a tree which will be visible from inside the hospital buildings and to passers by.

Evening Star editor Nigel Pickover said: “The Star is delighted to be able to spread some Christmas sparkle at Ipswich Hospital.

“Thanks must go to our community partners who have made it possible.”

The tree is expected to be put up mid December.

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