On behalf of the Co-operative Funeralcare group I would like to say what a pleasure it has been to work alongside the W.I.C.H.
group who have been working so hard to raise funds to make this community project work.
We at the Co-Operative Group know how important it is to work alongside local community groups and we wish W.I.C.H all the best in building their memorial building.
The Co-operative Funeralcare
NewHospitals are the Project Management Company who oversaw the redevelopment of both St Helens & Whiston Hospital working with their partners,
Vinci Construction, Vinci Facilities & Medirest (Compass). We worked closely with the community during this time which is when we became aware of the objectives of the WICH group.
We fully support this project and are extremely keen to be involved in assisting them in any way we can.
We have already facilitated a number of meetings with all parties to assist the group with meeting their targets
The members are a dedicated group of volunteers who work so hard to see this come to fruition. They truly
appreciate any support/donations offered.
NewHospital (St Helens & Knowsley) Ltd | HCP
The Mayor Writes
When the new hospital was being built and it became clear that the hospital Chapel could not be saved,
some like minded people got together and decided that they would not simply accept the loss of this significant
and unique building, and so W.I.C.H was born.
They are a dedicated group who are trying to simultaneously preserve something of the old
and create something new which, like the old Chapel, will serve the people of Whiston for generations to come.
I and my Consort are proud to support them.
Whiston Town Mayor
Cllr Jackie Delaney
Roger Phillips says
I remember only too well the furore surrounding the demolition of the old Whiston Hospital Chapel to make way for the new Whiston Hospital.
It was a sad time. But I was so heartened by the news that the community – in the shape of Whiston Initiative in Cultural Heritage – had rescued some of the stonework and the stained glass windows.
And what a plan – to use those original parts of the chapel to place in a new memorial chapel at Foxes Bank Cemetery. Could they do it, I wondered. Well, they’re well along the road.
But they need more help in the form of time, labour, expertise and of course money. Vinci construction has led the way in managing the build; WICH now need your help –by sponsoring a window, paying for the steel, or the concrete, the joinery, electrics and so on.
This is community action at its best, which is why I hope – as part of that community – you’ll help in whatever way you can.
Whiston Town Council
In June 2006 Whiston Hospital was under major re-development and planning permission was granted to demolish the historic hospital chapel.
Attempts were made by the local community to have the chapel declared a Listed Building, however the listing authority (Department of Media, Culture and Sport)
did not agree that there was sufficient justification to warrant the building being preserved via this process.
During a public meeting I suggested the idea of removing material from the chapel and storing the materials for a possible rebuild in the future.
This plan was approved by the main contractors at Whiston Hospital. Knowsley Cemetery on Fox’s Bank Lane was chosen as a storage site with the full approval of Knowsley Council.
During the removal and storage process a further suggestion was made to seek approval for the chapel to be rebuilt at Knowsley Cemetery and provide a multi-faith community building.
This would accommodate a book of remembrance for the cemetery, together with historic documents relating to the history of the hospital chapel.
This suggestion was welcomed by Knowsley Council and a design was approved for the chapel incorporating many of the original materials and design elements.
Work started on the chapel in 2014.
Parks and Cemeteries Manager
The chapel was a much loved feature of the old Whiston Hospital, and it was with great sadness that the building was dismantled as part of the redevelopment of the hospital. History not only moves with time, but places too, and it is fantastic news for the local community that part of the chapel is to be rebuilt at Foxes Bank Cemetery.
VINCI Construction UK were only too pleased to help with the construction of the new Chapel Building.
We initially got involved as the original building was situated on the Whiston PFI Hospital Site.
We meet with the wonderful group of people who form the WICH Group and heard how important this building will be to the local community,
and agreed to construct the foundations to the new chapel which we hoped would provide the group with a springboard to get the project underway.
We look forward to providing any support we can with the development.
VINCI Construction UK
Building Division - North
VINCI CONSTRUCTION UK LIMITED
Medirest are the soft services provider at Whiston and St Helens hospitals and we work very closely with our partners St Helens and Knowsley NHS Trust,
New Hospitals and Vinci Facilities to ensure that every patient receives excellent care.
Most of the patients we care for and practically all of our staff come from the local community so it is very important to us that we support our local community whenever and wherever we can.
To this end we became aware of the fantastic project undertaken by the W.I.C.H group to rebuild the beautiful chapel which was on the grounds of Whiston Hospital.
Medirest fully endorse this very worthy project and we offer our full support to their campaign".
Contract Director ~Medirest
St Helens and Knowsley PFI Hospitals