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Our History

St Benedict’s Hospice began informally in 1980 at Havelock Hospital in Sunderland, following a lot of hard work and campaigning by Dr Roland Ramsay and his team and officially became a Hospice in 1984; it was the first Hospice in the North East of England. It was named after Benedict Biscop who founded a hospice (place of hospitality) and monastery on the banks of the River Wear in 674AD, where St Peter’s Church, Monkwearmouth now stands.

In 1993 the Hospice became a charity and in June 1994 the Hospice moved to much improved facilities at Monkwearmouth Hospital.

In 2004 we once again need to improve and expand our services. The estimated cost of this refurbishment was £1.5 million. As we had already raised £750,000, an appeal was launched to raise the remaining £750,000. With the support of North East Hospice Lottery, pubs, clubs and various other groups and individuals in the community, the work was completed in November 2005 and officially opened by our patron, the Duchess of Northumberland on 14th November 2005.

St Benedict’s Hospice and Centre for Specialist Palliative Care was relocated to its current site in Ryhope in 2013. This new facility has 14 single ensuite bedrooms which all have access to outside space. In June 2013 hundreds of people from across the region took the opportunity to visit the new Hospice during our open days, enjoying guided tours of the facilities and learning about the services available to our patients.

Patients, staff and volunteers are delighted with the facilities at the new St. Benedict’s Hospice and Centre for Specialist Palliative Care.  To see more take a virtual tour.