Crowborough Hospital Fete has again fallen victim to the Covid-19 epidemic and will not take place this year.
In a letter to the team of volunteers, Friends of Crowborough Hospital chairman, Chantal Wilson, said:
The trustees of the Friends have concluded, regrettably, that the situation about mass gatherings is still uncertain, even as far ahead as August. We have therefore decided not to hold the traditional fete again this year.
It is a sad decision but we don’t want to put volunteers to a lot of work, only to find we can’t go ahead; nor do we want to acquire a lot of donations that we are unable to store or sell.Crowborough Hospital chairman, Chantal Wilson
It is only the second time the event has been cancelled since it became established in the late 1950s as the town’s main August Bank Holiday Monday attraction.
The Friends are now looking at ways of filling the funding void left by the cancellation. Last year they were able to organise a Month of Giving in August thanks to the generosity of Chappell’s Pharmacy owner Mr Mahendra Sharma who allowed them to open a pop-up shop in the vacated part of the pharmacy and health food store in Croft Road. In addition, the Sewing Crow-Bees raised a magnificent £15,000 for the Friends by manufacturing and selling face masks.
Mrs Wilson said:
The hospital’s in-patient ward has been completely full throughout the pandemic which shows how important it is that the Friends continue to provide equipment and services to make life easier and better for both patients and staff. Thanks to the Sewing Crow-Bees, for example, we were able to provide specialist mattresses for in-patients so that very unwell patients could be more comfortable and more easily nursed by staff.Chantal Wilson
One event definitely going ahead this year is the annual raffle but the Friends will also be looking at alternative ways of focusing attention on Crowborough Hospital on Bank Holiday Monday. There will be further announcements about how you can purchase your tickets nearer the time. For more information about the Friends of Crowborough Hospital look at their website (www.foch.org.uk) and follow them on social media.