Care centre’s name chosen

The new Palliative Care East Centre will be named after Gorleston woman Louise Hamilton, who tragically died aged 28 after a battle with breast cancer.

A public consultation asking for suitable names for the new centre, currently being built at the James Paget University Hospital, revealed the popular choice.

Louise was born in Gorleston in 1969 and was a pupil at Wroughton and Lynn Grove schools before she went to Bristol University and graduated with a degree in languages.

At the age of just 26, Louise found she had breast cancer. She sadly passed away aged 28.

While Louise was living with her cancer, she had found the help offered to her by the Bristol Cancer Help Centre to be enormously beneficial.

Her mother, Roberta Lovick, of Potter Heigham, was inspired by Louise's experience of a supportive care and information centre in Bristol to start fundraising for a similar centre for people in Great Yarmouth and Waveney.

And Mrs Lovick's experience with her daughter Louise helped inspire the launch of the Palliative Care East appeal back in 2006.

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The new Palliative Care East funded-centre will be called the Louise Hamilton Centre and will open in December this year.

It is expected to be used by 10,000 people a year.

Mrs Lovick said: 'It was just so emotional finding out the centre would be named after Louise. I'm very touched that so many people put her name forward. It was my dream to have this kind of service locally and now it's almost hard to believe it's actually happening.

'This type of centre has been needed for so long and I'd like to thank people from the bottom of my heart for donating and helping make it happen. We still need donations to make it all happen and keep it running.'

The Palliative Care East appeal was launched in 2006 and the latest round of local fundraising has brought the total to within just �100,000 of its �1.5 million target.

The Palliative Care East-funded Louise Hamilton Centre is being designed by Norwich-based LSI Architects who have designed the central space as a dramatic curving shape resembling an upturned boat –a reminder of the scheme's seaside context and of the notion of an 'ark' as a place of refuge.

The centre and outreach service is a partnership between NHS Norfolk and Waveney, local county councils and the voluntary sector; including funds from the Palliative Care East appeal.

It will bring together a wide range of organisations that can help support patients who are living with a life-limiting illness and also help their loved ones.