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Gloucestershire Business News

John Lewis and Waitrose partners go to great strides to support local hospice

This month a 118-strong team of John Lewis & Partners and Waitrose & Partners Cheltenham are stepping out to run, jog, walk, swim, cycle or even roller skate the 21km distance of the cancelled Cheltenham Half Marathon in support of a Gloucestershire hospice.

Retail staff at the Cheltenham stores will be putting in the miles to help raise vital funds for Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice who helped care for a friend and colleague.

So far the team have raised £1,670, which could pay for 80 hours of the hospice's expert and compassionate palliative care.

The partners, some of whom have recently returned to work following the lifting of Coronavirus lockdown restrictions, have until 20th September to clock up their kilometres, which will see them cover a mammoth 2,500km between them.

That's almost enough to walk from Land's End to John O Groats - twice. And some Partners have already committed to doing more.

Partners from the two Cheltenham-based retailers decided to take part in the Virtual Cheltenham Half Challenge set by the hospice following the cancellation of the Still Moving Cheltenham Half, due to take place this month.

Jordan Kirkland, partner and team manager at John Lewis Cheltenham, said: "After entering a team in the Cheltenham Half Marathon 2019 and raising almost £4,500 it was an obvious choice for us to support Sue Ryder's 'Virtual Half Marathon' and help to raise some much needed funds for our local hospice."

"Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice cannot continue to provide the amazing care that it does without vital fundraising and donations and this has only been exacerbated by the Coronavirus pandemic due to events like the Cheltenham Half having to be cancelled."

"We've worked closely with Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice since we opened in 2018 and have witnessed first-hand the amazing work that they do supporting patients, families and the community."

"One of our much loved Partners and friends, who moved to Cheltenham to open the store, was taken care of in Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer; her family and friends were absolutely overwhelmed by the standard of care she received as well as the kindness and professionalism of all of the staff."

Matt Reay, senior community fundraiser at Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice, said: "Everyone at the hospice shares their heartfelt thanks to Partners at John Lewis and Waitrose for taking on this challenge raising vital funds for our hospice."

"We know times are tough for everybody at the moment, so we are especially touched and humbled that so many Partners are taking the time and energy to take part in the Virtual Half and raise funds - every bit really does help."

"With cancelled fundraising events and continuing additional costs for purchasing PPE for our doctors and nurses now, more than ever, we need the support of our local community so we can continue to be there when it matters."

You can donate towards the John Lewis and Waitrose Partners fundraising at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/JL-WR-powerthroughforsue.

There is still time to take part in Sue Ryder's Virtual Half, with a 1 mile, 10km and Half Marathon options. Sign up at www.sueryder.org/cheltenham.

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