Plans to establish a ten-bed hospice at the James Paget University Hospital have been put to one side.

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The chairman of the Gorleston hospital today announced that they would not be starting a fundraising campaign for a £3m hospice after another charity bought land and is looking for funding for a £4m hospice in nearby Hopton.

Officials from the hospital mooted plans last month for a new building behind the Louise Hamilton Centre, which is run by the Palliative Care East (PCE) charity.

It came as East Coast Hospice (ECH) celebrated a milestone of buying five acres of land off Sidegate Road, Hopton for a ten -bed hospice, which will be called Margaret Chadd House. ECH plan to start work on their hospice in 2016.

David Wright, chairman of the Jame Paget University Hospital, said they did not want to be seen to be competing with ECH.

“At their meeting on the November 29, the board of directors of the James Paget University Hospital agreed that it would be wrong to be seen to be competing with another local charity, with similar aims. Therefore, a fundraising campaign for a hospice at the Gorleston hospital will not be launched at the current time,” he said.

Officials from the JPH said fundraising would continue to support the work of PCE at the Louise Hamilton Centre, which provides care for patients and their families in the Great Yarmouth and Waveney area.

Mr Wright added: “The trust priority will be to continue to focus on improving existing services for patients that require palliative care services and the essential work of the Louise Hamilton Centre. In particular, supporting the centre’s charitable efforts to enable those services to continue and flourish.

The Louise Hamilton Centre is the hub of an extensive network of services to support patients with palliative care needs and their families to live at home, avoiding hospital or hospice care where possible. The trust is committed to being part of an improved system focusing on what matters most for patients and carers.”

Jennifer Beesley, chairman of East Coast Hospice, added: “I would like to thank David Wright and the JPUH for this decision which provides clarity for the people of Great Yarmouth and Waveney. We look forward to moving ahead to build Margaret Chadd House which will be an integral part of hospice care in our community.”

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