Costa Coffee helps hospice treasure memories


One of the UK’s biggest High Street names is supporting a County Durham hospice which has helped patients and their families for more than 25 years.

Hayley Gaffney, who is the store manager of Costa Coffee at the Arnison Retail Park in Pity Me, presented a cheque for £400 to Willow Burn Hospice’s income generation and marketing manager Katherine Luke.

The money will be used to buy a camera to record activities in and around Willow Burn as well as events such as its charity ball. It is taking place on 16 September at the Beamish Hall Hotel and is being organised in partnership with The Sir Bobby Robson Foundation.

“When you visit Willow Burn you can’t fail to be impressed by the care shown by all of its members of staff and volunteers. We’re discussing other ways we can help,” said Hayley.

“Although we are a big UK and international brand, we want to make a positive impact in our local communities.”

Costa Coffee opened its store at the Arnison Centre nearly a year ago. The company has more than 2,000 coffee shops in the UK and employs more than 16,000 people. In 2007 it set up the Costa Foundation – an independent charity which aims to relieve poverty in coffee-growing communities – and here it supports a number of charities and community groups through fund-raising and providing free space for meetings and events.

“We also gave one of our customers the coffee grounds. Apparently they worked wonders for his allotment,” said Hayley.

Katherine Luke, from Willow Burn Hospice, said: “We are so grateful to Costa, Hayley and her colleagues. Without the generosity of local businesses, schools and individuals we wouldn’t exist.

“We are all about cherishing lives as well as treasuring memories – and something as simple as a camera helps us to do that.”