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September 27, 2023

Baby Loss Awareness Week 2023: Bolton to come together to remember the lives of babies

  • Wave of Light service takes place on Sunday 15 October from 6.45pm
  • Families across Bolton invited to join for prayer and to light candles
  • Local businesses donate thousands of pounds worth of materials to refresh baby garden

Bolton NHS Foundation Trust is to host a special candle-lit service for families across Bolton to remember the lives of babies who sadly died too soon.

On Sunday 15 October, the annual ‘Wave of Light’ event will take place at Royal Bolton Hospital’s Baby Memorial Garden, where people are being invited to light a candle and take a moment to reflect with poems and music.

People will gather from 6.45pm ahead of the service starting at 7pm.

Battery lit candles will be provided which can be left to glow in the garden, in a poignant tribute to all the babies who shined brightly in people’s lives.

For those who can’t attend , people are being encouraged to take part wherever they are by lighting a candle at 7pm.

Reverend Catherine Binns, Deputy Head Chaplain at Bolton NHS Foundation Trust, said:

Wave of Light is an opportunity for us all to come together and remember babies’ lives in a special way.

“Experiencing the loss of a baby or child is incredibly painful so by hosting our Wave of Light we want parents and families to know that they are not alone and that we are here for you.

“Every year families tell us how much this service means to them, and we’ll have staff there on the night to provide support or to be a listening ear.

Baby Loss Awareness Week is an opportunity to bring people together as a community and give anyone touched by pregnancy and baby loss a safe and supportive space to share their experiences and feel that they are not alone.

In preparation for this year’s service, colleagues from iFM Bolton, the Trust’s estates and facilities provider, have received more than £25,000 worth of materials, which were donated from local businesses to refresh the baby garden to create a reflective space for families.

Keely Barlow, Customer Services Team Leader at iFM Bolton, said:

A good friend of mine, who often uses the garden to remember her son, came to me and mentioned how the garden could be improved so that it’s more appropriate for families to spend time in.

“With the backing of the iFM team, our Head Groundsman, Jon Lever, and I reached out to businesses across Bolton to source everything from wood, soil, plants – the list is endless thanks to their incredible generosity.

“I’m very passionate about fundraising and my goal is to create a beautiful space for bereaved parents to reflect and remember within the baby garden.

Keely then drew up landscaping plans with building contractor, Overbury, who are working with the Trust to create a brand new Community Diagnostic Centre (CDC) at Royal Bolton Hospital.

Overbury offered their staff as volunteers to carry out the groundwork, supported with project management, and kindly fitted a new carpet for the hospital’s chapel.

Gennaro Sarno, Senior Project Manager for Overbury, said:

We know how much this space means to families here in Bolton, and whilst we’re at the hospital to create the Community Diagnostic Centre we thought it would be fitting to volunteer and help transform the garden to create a meaningful space that people can use for years to come.

The purchasing of baby memorial plaques and other generous donations from bereaved families through Our Bolton NHS Charity and fundraising by Morrisons in Leigh has helped to fund new and improved lighting for the garden.

A ceremony to re-open the Baby Memorial Garden will take place at 6pm on Friday 13 November.

With thanks to the following businesses in Bolton for their generous donation of supplies:

North West Turf, Farnworth

Bolton Builders Merchants, Atherton

Beech Hall Farm, Westhoughton

Anthony Axford, Farnworth

Focus Group (CNS), Monton

Cheshire Soils-Grabs r Us

SJH Landscaping, Worsley

Giants Seat Garden Centre, Ringley

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