Singer backs hospital campaign

INTERNATIONAL singing star Chris de Burgh is backing the campaign to save a Felixstowe hospital from closure - by allowing supporters to use one of his songs.

INTERNATIONAL singing star Chris de Burgh is backing the campaign to save a Felixstowe hospital from closure - by allowing supporters to use one of his songs.

But while a slight change in the lyrics of his most famous hit to PCT in Red might have hit the nail on the head as far as cash-strapped health bosses are concerned, campaigners are borrowing another song for a special project.

The Save Our Hospitals action group is making a DVD to use at events to explain their campaign and show what the under-threat Bartlet is like and the work it does.

Action group member Ian Heeley said: “We are making a six-minute DVD which we can then use at events, meetings, seminars and when we meet other organisations to show what out campaign is all about and why we are so desperate to save the Bartlet.

“We needed a suitable piece of music to play on the disc to back the photos and we thought Chris de Burgh's song Tender Hands from his Flying Colours CD would be perfect.

“The song is all about how a man needs someone to look after him through the night as he lays dying.”

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Chris de Burgh also sent the group a message of support - and wished them good luck with the bid to stop the convalescent and rehabilitation unit from being closed.

Mr Heeley who is co-ordinating the DVD project said: “We are thrilled. It is an absolutely fantastic gesture to allow us to use the song.”

A spokesman for Mercury Records said Chris de Burgh was happy for the action group to use Tender Hands as long as it was not for commercial purposes and only one DVD was produced. He was always pleased to support good causes if he could.

The DVD features a number of photographs taken for the project by Stuart Massey, son of Dr Janet Massey, one of the leaders of the campaign to save the Bartlet.

Suffolk East Primary Care Trust, faced with paying off millions of pounds debts, says the Bartlet will not be needed in future as it wants people discharged from hospital quicker to be looked after in their own homes by travelling care teams.

What songs do you think could describe the state of the health service? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail EveningStarLetters@eveningstar.co.uk