WORK on the new Louth and District Hospice on land off the A16 has finally begun after years of uncertainty and hard work.
Monday’s ceremony marked the start of work on the land donated by local farmer Frank Nicholson, with the chairman of East Lindsey District Council, Coun Stan Avison, turning over the first piece of soil.
Plans for the hospice were born in the early 2000s, but hit a number of setbacks over the years and the size of the plans were reduced to save costs.
But after years of fundraising the trustees as well as children from Louth primary schools were on hand to see the special moment when work began.
Workers from Higgins Builders of Fulstow have moved onto the site and hospice trustees confirmed work could be complete by Christmas with the hope of a February 2013 opening after NHS vetting is completed.
The hospice will be the base for daycare and day therapy locally, providing a centre for local care providers including Macmillan and St Barnabas.
Coun Avison told the Leader at the ceremony he was ‘honoured’ to get work underway.
“It’s a worthwhile project, the whole of Louth will be proud when it opens,” he said.
“It’s a shame that this facility is needed but it is and it’s a super project, I’m very honoured.
“It’s a lovely spot here as well, the farmer Frank Nicholson has been very generous.”
Louth Hospice Trustee Jim Walmsley added: “I knew it would come, it’s taken years but we’ve been determined.
“There’s more fundraising to be done as there’s lots to go in, things are very expensive but the hospice will be a brilliant facility for the local area.”
Click here to watch a video of the unveiling ceremony held on Monday at the site of the new hospice.