Legacy gift provides comfort for families at our Cambridge ‘Homes from Home’

46 brand new mattresses given to Acorn House and Chestnut House as Cambridge South Rotary Club direct local businessman's legacy gift to helping families with a seriously ill child in hospital

Our two ‘Homes from Home’ in Cambridge have received 46 brand new mattresses courtesy of a wonderfully generous legacy gift from a local businessman.

Thanks to the combined efforts of the Cambridge South Rotary Club and the Cambridge Fundraising Committee, every bed in our Acorn House and Chestnut House ‘Homes from Home’ has been fitted with a new mattress, providing much needed comfort for families during the most stressful of times.

L-R: Peter Miller (friend of Duncan Hannay-Robertson), David Ellis (President, Cambridge South Rotary Club), Mike Smith (Cambridge South Rotary Club), Patsy Glazebrook (Cambridge Fundraising Committee), Alan Edwards (Cambridge South Rotary Club), Rachael Chambers (Assistant House Manager, Acorn & Chestnut Houses), John & Pippa Bromell (friends of Duncan Hannay-Robertson).

Acorn House provides a warm, comfortable place to stay for families with seriously ill children being treated at Addenbrookes Hospital, Chestnut House serving families with a child being cared for at The Rosie.

The legacy gift was left to Cambridge South Rotary Club by its former President, Duncan Hannay-Robertson, who passed away in November 2020. Duncan was an admired and successful local businessman who started as a civil engineer before pursuing a new career in finance, culminating in the creation of financial planning company Hannay Robertson Ltd.

The Cambridge Fundraising Committee – which has been supporting The Sick Children’s Trust since 2000, raising over £976,000 for the charity – played a vital role in securing the legacy gift from Cambridge South Rotary Club, which donated nearly £8,000 to cover the cost of the 46 mattresses.

In recognition of the legacy gift, plaques were recently unveiled at both ‘Homes from Home’, with Cambridge South Rotary Club and the Cambridge Fundraising Committee members attending alongside some of Duncan’s many friends.

Speaking about the legacy gift, Cambridge Fundraising Committee treasurer Trevor Mawby said: “We are proud to have supported The Sick Children’s Trust’s ‘Homes from Home’ in Cambridge for the past two decades, doing our best to secure what they need to keep delivering for the families in the best way possible. We are so thankful to the Cambridge South Rotary Club for appreciating their important work and for providing Duncan’s wonderful, generous legacy gift, one that will benefit families that stay at Acorn House and Chestnut House for many years to come.”

Sandra Griggs, Head of House Operations (South) for The Sick Children’s Trust, said: “I really cannot thank Cambridge South Rotary Club enough for using Duncan’s legacy gift in such a wonderful way. The families who stay in our ‘Homes from Home’ tell us about the importance of a comfy bed, a place where they can get the rest they need to help them put all their energies on their child in hospital. Gifts like this make all the difference to our families, so a huge thank you to the Rotary Club and the Cambridge Fundraising Committee for making this happen.”

The Cambridge Fundraising Committee was formed by Patsy Glazebrook in 1999 to raise money for our first ‘Home from Home’ in Cambridge, with Acorn House being opened a year later by stage and screen legend Michael Crawford CBE, our President since 1987.

By hosting celebrity lunches, evening lectures, afternoon tea parties, garden tours, concerts and more, the Committee also supports Chestnut House, which opened in 2012. The two ‘Homes from Home’ having now supported almost 11,000 families with children being cared for at those Cambridge hospitals.

For further information about events organised by the Committee in Cambridge, please contact sctcambridge@gmail.com or TEL. 01799 541180.

David Ellis (President, Cambridge South Rotary Club), Patsy Glazebrook (Cambridge Fundraising Committee) and Mike Smith (Cambridge South Rotary Club) in front of Duncan’s plaque at Acorn House.

Email Newsletter

Every year we help families by giving them somewhere to stay near their seriously ill child’s hospital bedside. Sign up to receive our email newsletters to stay up to date with how your support is helping to keep families together.