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Willow Suite

We know how helpful it can be for a family to spend time with their child after they have died, and to know that their child is continuing to receive exceptional care from us. We have a Willow Suite at our Guildford hospice where a child can lay at rest. They can be surrounded by their favourite items and their favourite people can visit to wish them (or say) goodbye. Our specialist care team will be able to support the family with the processes and paperwork necessary at this time, and to provide important advice about supporting brothers and sisters. They can spend time in our gardens or in our family-friendly corners full of toys. Our hospice is a home-from-home for all of our families. We make sure bereaved families are fed, cared for and have everything they need, so they can focus on being together as a family.

Cold blankets and cuddle cots

In some circumstances when parents request it, we can provide them with the use of a cold blanket, also called a cuddle cot. This is a device that chills a mattress or crib, allowing the body of a child who has died to be preserved so that parents can spend extra hours or days with them. This is especially important if parents would prefer a child to be with them at home in their final days, rather than at one of our hospices or a hospital.

Our care staff are trained in operating these devices, and giving instructions to parents in how to use them themselves.

Our bereavement suite

Being told your baby will not survive is an unimaginably painful moment, and having to make decisions at such a time can feel overwhelming.

This video, featuring information and the personal story of Rhodri’s parents, explains what coming to Christopher’s for end-of-life care would mean, and how we can help families say goodbye in their own time.


Charmaine – Rhodri's mum

“After Rhodri passed away we were able to have him here with us at the hospice in a cuddle cot so rather than sending him to a mortuary he was able to stay with us. It meant that we were able to come and visit him whenever we wanted to and come and say our goodbyes.”