Family’s moonlight walk to remember their mum

Memories: Bernie Galt, Gabby Finley-Cookson and Moira Finley-Landry with their mum Ann Finley, celebrating her 72nd birthday in March 2014

Memories: Bernie Galt, Gabby Finley-Cookson and Moira Finley-Landry with their mum Ann Finley, celebrating her 72nd birthday in March 2014

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A family will remember their much-loved mum on the first anniversary of her death by taking part in the St Catherine’s Hospice Moonlight and Memories Walk this weekend.

Moira Finley-Landry and her sisters Gabby Finley-Cookson and Bernie Galt will be striding out to raise money for the hospice which cared for their mum Ann and supported their family through an extremely difficult time last year.

We know it will be an emotional night but think it is the perfect way to remember our mum and show our support for the place which helped us so much

The event begins at 10pm this Saturday, continuing into the early hours of Sunday - the date of Ann’s anniversary.

There is the choice of an eight or 16-mile route and people can still sign up on the night to show their support.

As part of the 30th anniversary Give A Gift campaign with the Lancashire Evening Post, the hospice has a target of 1,000 walkers. They currently have nearly 900 people registered and need the community’s help to help them reach their goal.

The sisters said it would be a very poignant occasion and a fitting tribute to their beloved mum and grandma.

Moira said: “We know it will be an emotional night but think it is the perfect way to remember our mum and show our support for the place which helped us so much.”

Ann, who had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), was referred to St Catherine’s Family Support team and Clinical Nurse Specialist team - who provide care and support for patients in their own homes - last spring.

Moira, 40, from Frenchwood, said the help they had provided had been crucial in helping Ann to remain at home with husband Ted.

She explained: “We had struggled for a long time before St Catherine’s got involved.

“But when we were referred to the hospice that all changed - all of a sudden things fell into place. Pieces of equipment and a specialist bed we had been waiting for arrived which made such a difference. And knowing that my dad and my sisters and I had somewhere to go for help and advice was so reassuring. Best of all, mum was treated as a real person, who really mattered.

“Mel, our clinical nurse specialist, was wonderful in helping coordinate my mum’s care and was a key advisor in assisting us to keep my mum at home, where she wanted to be.”

Moira, a support worker who is also studying to become a counsellor, said she and her family were passionate about raising funds so that more families can benefit from the care of St Catherine’s in the future.

Moira said: “As a family, we want to enable others to benefit from the excellent services that St Catherine’s offers to our community, when it is needed the most.

“We’re sure there will be a fantastic atmosphere at the Moonlight and Memories Walk and we hope others will be inspired to join in too.”

Norman Cutler, senior fundraiser at St Catherine’s Hospice, “We’re tantalisingly close to our Give A Gift campaign target and are calling on people to come along, join this very special night and help us reach our goal during our 30th anniversary year.

“Our café The Mill will be open beforehand so people can fuel up with a cup of tea and a cake, and we’ll have a fun group work-out going on to warm everyone up ahead of the walk setting off. We’re looking forward to seeing people there!”

The walk starts and finishes at St Catherine’s Hospice in Lostock Hall.

You can still register for the walk on the night between 7.30pm and 9.30pm. It costs £20 for adults and £10 for under 18s - cash only please. Visit www.stcatherines.co.uk for more information. The Mill Café, in the grounds of the hospice, will also be open between 7pm and 10pm to purchase drinks and cakes.