Another lifeline for families at the Children’s Hospital

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Extra free accommodation for families of patients at Sheffield Children’s Hospital will be officially opened next week - after a £975,000 appeal launched by actor Dominic West and backed by the Sheffield Telegraph.

Magnolia House has been created in properties in Northumberland Road, at the back of the hospital.

Already more than 70 families have used the new ‘home from home’ - a few minutes’ walk from the critical care unit - since it opened just before Christmas.

The official opening ceremony, by Lord Mayor Coun Vickie Priestley, will be on Wednesday. Dominic West, who was born in Sheffield and launched the Sick Children’s Trust’s Branching Out Appeal in March 2012, cannot be there because of work commitments, but is expected to see the facilities in the next few months.

The father-of-five said: “No family should be separated from their child while they are receiving critical care in hospital. The Sick Children’s Trust’s support means that family life can continue throughout the child’s illness, in a comfortable environment which provides emotional, as well as practical support.”

Magnolia House has 11 bedrooms, a communal living area and cooking and laundry facilities, providing free accommodation for some families who would otherwise have to travel long distances from their own home.

Already Treetop House offers similar facilities in the hospital.

Pubs, churches, companies, schools and other organisations raised the money. Many activities were promoted by families who had benefited from Treetop House.