Duchess of Cornwall opens new Maggie’s Centre in Withington.

Soap stars, royalty and homes4u were all in attendance at the grand opening of the newest Maggies Centre at The Christie Hospital in Withington on Tuesday 26th April.

Maggie’s Centres are situated all across the UK and provide practical, emotional and social support to people with cancer and their family and friends. The centre in Withington is the eighteenth centre to be built across the UK and is currently the biggest, expecting to see somewhere between 50,000 – 60,000 people a year. The centre has been designed by famed local born architect Lord Norman Foster and the gardens by Chelsea flower show winner, Dan Pearson.

Camilla Parker Bowles, Duchess of Cornwall and President of Maggie’s Cancer Support Centres was the guest of honour and took a tour of the brand new facility and its gardens on her visit. The Duchess introduced herself to everyone as she walked around the centre, meeting the designers, supporters, donors and staff along the way.

The Duchess of Cornwall commented she “couldn’t imagine a more welcoming or imaginative sanctuary,” and she hoped to see a Maggie’s Centre in every major UK city over the next two decades.

Former coronation street star Julie Hesmondhalgh, who received rave reviews for her portrayal of a professor in her final days fighting ovarian cancer In Wit at the Royal Exchange this year is a proud supporter of Maggies Centre also came along to the opening.

While we were looking round we bumped into our friends Will and Elani from the University of Manchester Cycling Club. The club, who we sponsor, have helped raised £2,666 for Maggie’s over the last 6 months.

The weather managed to hold off for the majority of the afternoon, and before long the centre will be up and running and helping to support thousands of families in the North-West. It was a great occasion, and fantastic to be able to visibly see the impressive facility where the hard earned fundraising efforts will be going towards supporting.

We chose to support Maggie’s as our partner charity as it is a cause which is close to our hearts. Owner and Managing Director at homes4u Carolyn Mellor, is a proud member of the board at Maggie’s. She commented, “It is wonderful for our business to be involved with Maggie’s in the North-West. Maggie’s is a charity which is close to me both on a personal level and location-wise we are very near the new centre at the Christie Hospital.”

Maggie's relies on voluntary donations to support and grow its network of centres and develop its unique, high quality programme of support across Greater Manchester. The charity aims to make the biggest difference it can to the tens of thousands of people diagnosed with cancer in Greater Manchester each year. Work has just started at a new site in Oldham.

From everyone at homes4u and the Withington Community, welcome to the neighbourhood and we wish you the best of luck and keep up the fantastic work.

If you would like to find out more about helping Maggie’s please visit their website at www.maggiescentres.org