Francis House nurse retiring after 25 years at Didsbury children’s hospice

Natalie Hands Francis House
Natalie Hands is leaving Francis House after more than a quarter of a century

One of Francis House’s leading nurses is retiring after more than 25 years at the children’s hospice in Didsbury.

Clinical lead Natalie Hands, from Stockport, is leaving having joined in 1991.

Natalie, from Stockport, joined Francis House – where there are seven children’s bedrooms and seven double family bedrooms give the parents a well-earned rest – when there were only four other children’s hospices in the UK.

In 2010, Natalie became clinical lead giving her responsibility for the care in Francis House.

She said: “It was just amazing, a lovely homely setting with carpets and matching curtains and all about the care of the whole family – ‘wow’ was probably a word we said a lot.

“I’ve worked with remarkable colleagues and met extraordinary families, there will always be part of Francis House in my heart.

“Working with bereaved brothers and sisters and helping them to understand grief at a level appropriate for their age and giving them the tools to help deal with their bereavement is so important for their future lives.”

Chief executive of Francis House David Ireland paid tribute to her work: “After 25 years with us at Francis House we are sad to say goodbye to Natalie.

“We thank her for passion and dedication, she will be missed by colleagues and the children and families alike.

“With four grandchildren and lots of friends we know she’ll have a busy retirement.”