UPDATE: Nearly £1,260 raised in 24-hour bikeathon to buy therapy dog for Skegness Hospital end-of-life ward

Nearly £1,260 has been raised in a 24-hour bikeathon to buy a therapy dog for a ward at Skegness Hospital.

Staff on the Scarbrough Ward teamed up with Frank Wood Funeralcare for the marathon effort yesterday (Tuesday) - which was the first of a series of fundraisers being held over the coming weeks.

Scarbrough Ward treats rehabilitation and end- of-life care patients and visits by dogs have brought special moments at what can often be a difficult time.

It is estimated the hospital will need £3,000 to get a therapy dog and a crowdfunding page has been set up and a bucket placed in the hospital corridor near the exercise bike for donations.

The launch of the 24-hour bikeathon at Skegness Hospital to raise £3,000 to buy a therapy dog for the Scarbrough Ward.

The bikeathon was organised by staff nurse Victoria Smith, who will take care of the therapy dog inbetween visiting the ward.

"Last year was really difficult so it is nice to be able to do charity things again," she said.

"We've set a deadline of about two months to raise the money we need, which is around £3,000.

"I'm really delighted we already have £1,240 towards our goal from cash donations and our online appeal.

"We are hoping to find a calm dog - one that has been well- trained - who will happily engage with the patients."

Charlotte Broomfield, junior sister on the ward, said the idea came from successful visits by Father Terry of Burgh-le-Marsh with his dog, Archie.

"We've had dogs in the ward before and we find patients really enjoy having the dogs - it lifts their mood and makes patients smile," said Charlotte.

Sarah Nothdurft, funeral director at Frank Wood Funeralcare, said they had worked closely with the hospital during the pandemic and were pleased to support the bikeathon.

"It's always nice to do things for the community and we will support the hospital any way we can," said Sarah.

"We have seen the change in people when Father Terry brings his dog.

"Everything can be lifted on a sad day to be a joyous celebration of life.

"A therapy dog will be a great asset for the hospital."

Other fundraisers planned include a sponsored was from Chapel St Leonards to Skegness and back on July 24.

On August 12 staff will be skydiving at Hibaladstow Airfield.

There will also be small events like a cake stall and volunteers who would like to bake are welcome to get in touch by emailing Sarah at [email protected]

To make a donation to the LCHS Scarborough Ward Therapy Dog Appeal visit here.