Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about our 'Homes from Home'

Before your stay

Is there a charge to stay in a ‘Home from Home’?

No, we never charge you to stay with us. Donations are very gratefully received but there is no obligation for you to give.

Can I book a room in advance?

Due to demand, our ‘Homes from Home’ do not take bookings and are unable to guarantee accommodation. Following our admissions criteria, rooms are allocated and reviewed on a daily basis so that we can help the families who are most in need.

How long can I stay for?

Length of stay in our houses is never guaranteed. House staff will review family stays on a regular basis and liaise with the hospital regarding certain factors: Is your child in intensive care? Is a parent bed available on the ward? How far away does your family live? Does your child have siblings? What is the expected length of treatment?

Can newly delivered mothers stay once discharged?

Newly delivered mothers are more than welcome to stay with us, however if they have given birth less than five days prior then they will need to have someone to stay with them until post five days.

I don`t have a partner, can someone else stay with me?

Different hospitals have different rules in place and we are currently mirroring the regulations set by them. If only one parent is allowed on the ward then only one parent will be able to stay in our ‘Home from Home’. Currently no siblings, friends or other relatives are able to stay with us.

What are the conditions for staying?

All of our houses are zero tolerance houses, meaning that illegal substances/legal highs and alcohol are prohibited and smoking has to be off premises. Abuse of the house facilities and threatening, disruptive or intimidating behaviour is also prohibited. Anyone under the age of 18 must be accompanied at all times by an adult. Families must not leave the room unused for more than one night in a week.

During your stay

My partner has to return to work, can I continue to stay?

Generally yes, as long as your child still meets our admission criteria and there is not a parent bed available on the ward. The only exception to this is that new mothers are required to be accompanied by an adult until five days after the birth. If siblings are also staying, please consider how practical it will be for one parent to stay and visit the hospital.

I have to return home to sort housing/business/siblings/pets/appointments etc. Can I keep my room?

Families can generally return home for one night at time. Please make house staff aware if you need to do this.

My child has been referred to another hospital for a second opinion/investigation/treatment but is expected to return here, can we keep our room?

Unfortunately we usually require you to return the keys if the child is no longer physically in the hospital linked to our ‘Home from Home’. We will of course do our best to re accommodate you on your return if possible.

House visitors

Are my family and friends allowed to visit me in the house?

For safety of all families and our staff no visitors are allowed to visit at present.

House facilities

Is there somewhere I can cook?

In line with hospital and infection control guidance, we are unable to offer the use of our kitchens at the moment. We will be working on procedures once we are able to reopen kitchens and ensure that we are Covid safe.

Are there laundry facilities?

All our houses have coin operated washing machines and tumble driers. Please ask house staff if you need change for the machines. We can also provide washing powder and fabric conditioner until you get a chance to buy some.

Is there WIFI available?

Eckersley, Acorn and Stevenson Houses ask for a suggested donation of £5.00 for the password, which lasts the duration of your stay.

Chestnut House does not currently have any WIFI.

Can I receive post at the house?

You are welcome to receive post at the house but remember we may not be able to forward items on to you if they arrive after your departure. Please check your House User Guide for the full address of the house.

Is there a TV in my room?

Some of our houses have televisions in the bedrooms but all of our houses have a communal lounge area with a television.

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