Popular Suffolk Remembers event set to return as usual this year

St Elizabeth Hospice's Suffolk Remembers event is set to go ahead as usual this year

St Elizabeth Hospice's Suffolk Remembers event is set to go ahead as usual this year - Credit: James Wilmott/St Elizabeth Hospice

The popular Suffolk Remembers event is hoped to go ahead on Felixstowe seafront this year following step four of the lockdown roadmap.

The annual memorial event, organised by St Elizabeth Hospice, normally sees 5,000 candles lit along the seafront as hundreds of people gather to remember their loved ones.

Coronavirus saw the event broadcast as an online video instead last year, although it is hoped the event will return to its traditional format on June 21 – the day step four of the government's roadmap out of lockdown is set to begin.

Pauline Donkin, head of individual giving and supporter care at St Elizabeth Hospice, said she hopes the event will give families who were not given the chance to say goodbye to loved ones a chance to grieve.

Ms Donkin said: “Sadly many families have lost a loved one due to Covid-19 and the last year has been a particularly difficult time. Some people were not even able to say goodbye, they have faced loneliness and grief, many without support.

“At Suffolk Remembers we all have one thing that unites us, the loss of someone we loved whether that is a member of our family or a dear friend.

"At Suffolk Remembers you won’t be alone, the candle you light to remember someone special will shine brightly along with the other 5,000 memories on the night as the community joins together.

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“As ever, the safety of our supporters is paramount and we will host Suffolk Remembers in accordance with government guidance and announce full event details in the near future. In the meantime we encourage all who wish to remember a loved one to contact our team to dedicate a virtual candle in their memory.”

The event normally sees 5,000 candles light up Felixstowe seafront

The event normally sees 5,000 candles light up Felixstowe seafront - Credit: St Elizabeth Hospice

Those with candles are encouraged to make donations to the independent Suffolk charity, which cares for more than 3,000 people across the county every year.

All are welcome to dedicate a candle at the event – including for those who were not cared for by the hospice – which is again sponsored by East of England Co-op Funeral Services.

Julian Snowling, head of funeral operations for the East of England Co-op Funeral Services, said: “With many family and friends unable to say their goodbyes in the way they would have wished these past 12 months, Suffolk Remembers has never been more poignant.

“This is an incredibly special event, which we are very proud to have been able to be a part of for many years.

"As the candles are lit this year, it will provide an important opportunity for us to stop and reflect, remembering and celebrating the lives of those no longer with us, whilst raising funds for St Elizabeth Hospice to continue their fantastic care.”

Each electric candle will also be accompanied by a photo and a message to a loved one on an online gallery.

Each dedication will also include a photo and a message to a loved one which will be included in the Suffolk Remembers’ online gallery and a physical electric candle will be added to the hospice’s physical event display.

For further information about Suffolk Remembers visit their website or via 01473 727776.

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