Home » Celebrating 40 years of St Catherine’s Hospice

Celebrating 40 years of St Catherine’s Hospice

2023 is a big year! Not only are we opening our new hospice in the Autumn, but we are also celebrating 40 years since St Catherine’s first opened its doors on Malthouse Road to help care for our local community. 

From caring for people at home, in our Living Well Centre, and on our wards, our expert teams are on hand to support those facing death and loss. We not only care for those who are terminally ill, but offer bereavement and carer support to their loved ones, along with support for children and young adults through counselling.

The past 40 years has seen our hospice care for thousands across our community, host fundraising and remembrance events like the Midnight Walk and Tree of Light, and most recently the construction of our new home at Pease Pottage. Check out some of our key dates below!


  • February 1980 – Appeal for new hospice launched in Horsham and public meeting is held in Crawley to launch St Catherine’s Hospice
  • July 1980 –  Land at Malthouse Road donated by Sir Norman Longley for our hospice to be built on
  • November 1982 – Foundation stone laid by HRH The Queen Mother
  • June 1983 – Hospice building completed by WC Hilton & Sons
  • October 1983 – Hospice opens with two patients
  • January 1985 – Specialist community care service is established with the first home care sister supporting patients in their own homes, working with GPs and district nurses in the community
  • April 1986 – First charity shop opened in the Broadway Crawley
  • July 1987 – Hospice welcomes its 1000th admission
  • September 1988 – Princess Diana visited


  • August 1991 – The Friends of St Catherine’s enter the Guiness book of records for the largest knitted blanket
  • November 1991 – The Kleinwort Day Care Centre for Outpatients is opened by HRH the Duchess of Kent
  • November 1993 – The Education Centre is opened
  • December 1995 – First Tree of Light service held in Crawley, raising over £6,000
  • July 1997 – The first specialist nurse in palliative care is appointed at the Princess Royal Hospital
  • May 1998 – Hospice lottery launched by Jimmy Hill who became the first founder member


  • September 2003 – First Dragon Boat race at Tilgate Park took place with eight teams
  • 2005 – Nine community nurses made 3,777 home visits and 13,261 phone calls
  • 2006 – St Catherine’s became the first hospice to host the Gold Standards Framework programme in 2006
  • 2007 – Introduction of the new electronic record system; Crosscare
  • June 2008 – First Midnight Walk took place in Horsham – 850 participants raised £124,000


  • January 2011 – First Crawley Champions Awards where St Catherine’s was recognised as the Champion of Champions for its unwavering work in providing specialised end of life care and support to local people, their families, friends and carers
  • March 2013 – Notification received of legacy from John Shemeld
  • June 2014 – Initial meeting with Bill Bridges to discuss the land at Pease Pottage
  • February 2016 – Our hospice is rated as outstanding by CQC
  • 2019 – Community HeART to Heart Trail launched


  • September 2021 – Enabling works commence at Pease Pottage site
  • February 2022 – Barnes Construction commence work at Pease Pottage site
  • February 2023 – ‘Topping Out’ ceremony at Pease Pottage as the roof is completed and the building is watertight

Add something to our time capsule!

To mark our significant past and our exciting future, we will be burying a time capsule in the new hospice grounds in July. But we need your memories of the hospice to be included in our ‘Book of Memories’ that will going in the time capsule!

Whatever St Catherine’s means to you, we’d love to hear about it. We’re giving you the opportunity to share any fond memories that you have of our hospice, and send in photos, videos, or your own creative expression of what it’s meant to you.

Share your hospice memories!


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