After two years of lockdowns and Covid restrictions, The Countess of Brecknock Hospice in Andover was finally able to celebrate the opening of its new building earlier this week.

On Tuesday, June 21, the official opening was carried out by Her Royal Highness Princess Alexandra, the Hon. Lady Ogilvy, KG, GCVO.

Her Royal Highness was received by HM Vice Lord Lieutenant of Hampshire Rear-Admiral Iain Henderson and welcomed by the chairman of Hampshire County Council, Cllr Marge Harvey, the deputy mayor of Test Valley, Cllr Philip Lashbrook, and the chairman of the Hospice Charitable Trust, Lady Mary Fagan. The director of the Charitable Trust, Michele Gard and the Hampshire Hospitals NHS Trust senior management team of Steve Erskine, Alex Whitfield and Dr Lara Alloway were presented to the Princess on her arrival.

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Her Royal Highness, escorted by clinical matron Sarah McGaughey, then toured the new building, meeting staff, volunteers and patients. Lady Mary Fagan welcomed Princess Alexandra and invited her to unveil a plaque to celebrate her visit. Staff Nurse Rebecca Lee, the hospice’s youngest trained nurse presented a posy of roses, one of the Princess’ favourite flowers.

Her Royal Highness also planted a beautiful flowering cherry tree in the new hospice garden to commemorate the Platinum Jubilee and met the garden’s designer, Fi Boyle.

Clinical matron, Sarah McGaughey said: “Her Royal Highness spoke to every volunteer and member of staff individually, and even popped in to see two of our patients, which was a lovely surprise for them.

"We were so delighted that we were able to celebrate the opening of our new building with the Princess.

"It was a very special afternoon for everyone."

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