Family-run business reaches £75,000 fundraising milestone for Harrogate hospital

Chair of FOHH, Andy Wilkinson, Owners of High Moor Farm, Park Peter Kershaw and Kimberley Holland, and FOHH Committee Member Jeannette Wilson.
Chair of FOHH, Andy Wilkinson, Owners of High Moor Farm, Park Peter Kershaw and Kimberley Holland, and FOHH Committee Member Jeannette Wilson.

A family-run business has reached a £75,000 fundraising milestone after its latest donation to purchase dementia friendly furniture for patients at Harrogate District Hospital.

High Moor Farm caravan park, on Skipton Road, has been supporting The Friends of Harrogate Hospital since the business started in 1978.

FOHH committee members and Byland Ward Manager Tammy Gotts with some of the dementia friendly cabinets which have also recently been installed on Byland Ward.

FOHH committee members and Byland Ward Manager Tammy Gotts with some of the dementia friendly cabinets which have also recently been installed on Byland Ward.

But last season the generosity of guests at the park and fundraising efforts by staff, has contributed to the £2,500 needed to purchase dementia friendly furniture for patients on Jervaulx ward.

Peter Kershaw started the business with his late wife, Maureen, and said that it was her favourite hobby to support the Friends of Harrogate Hospital.

He said: "Since the early 70s she had done it for the hospital, it was her thing and I just supported her with it, she really enjoyed doing it.

"Everywhere we went she was always looking in shops to buy prizes for raffles to raise money."

Mr Kershaw said that following Maureen's death, his daughter Kimberley has taken on the family's fundraising mantle, with the help of raffle organiser, Fred Storey.

He added: "The guests last year surpassed themselves, but for every one of the past forty years we have been glad to support The Friends – as Maureen always said “You never know when you might need help yourself.”

The friendly furniture is colour coded to make it easier for patients with dementia to identify which is their bed space.

Chairman of Friends of Harrogate Hospital, Andy Wilkinson, explained that there is a high percentage of elderly in-patients who suffer from some form of dementia but none of them will have been admitted because of it.

As a result, NHS funding cannot be drawn down to supply the furniture because money within the NHS can only be used to support patients with the conditions they were admitted for.

Mr Wilkinson said: “The holiday-makers and the family and staff at High Moor have been consistently generous to us and especially the late legendary Maureen Kershaw who inspired everyone.

"We are proud of our track record of using every penny donated to support patients in our hospital and the community.”