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Welcome To Willowbrook

Willowbrook Hospice

Willowbrook Hospice is an independent UK charity formed in 1993 to establish and create a local, specialist palliative care unit for our community. With all the positive encouragement and generous contributions from our community we opened the doors to our hospice in 1997 and, to date, have provided care, compassion, comfort, love, laughter and warmth to over 10,000 patients. 

And how we’ve grown: our increase in knowledge, ability, resources, capability and services mean we now receive over a thousand referrals each year. 

Located in the borough of Knowsley, Merseyside, we proudly give everything we can back to the community that supports us so incredibly well.

How we work


Willowbrook Hospice is a Specialist Palliative Care Unit. We offer short term care, usually a couple of weeks, for patients with complex needs and referrals are accepted  on this basis. Patients admitted to our specialist ward will have the benefit of care from a highly skilled team, including complex discharge planning support. We are unable to offer long term nursing care or care at end of life where the person does not have complex needs.

A Hospice isn’t just a building, it’s a culture. A hospice is a compassionate place that aims to improve the quality of life for people who have a life limiting or terminal illness; helping them to live their life well.

In line with our new strategy Willowbrook instils a holistic approach to the care we provide to our patients and their families. We don’t just care for a person’s physical needs but also for their emotional, spiritual and social needs too.

It is imperative to us to ensure that our patients are cared for in the best possible way in their preferred place of care, wherever that may be.

Who provides your care

Opened in 1997, the Hospice is governed by a Board of Trustees, led by the current chairman, Ian Craig. Day to day management of Willowbrook is carried out by our Executive Management Team: Lynda Finney, Clinical Director, Dr Paula Powell, Medical Director and Alun Owen, Corporate Director.  They in turn, are supported by our committed 125 staff and over 530 dedicated volunteers.

The  Executive Management Team together, with their Medical, Nursing and Allied Healthcare Professional teams, are responsible for delivering the Hospice’s five main services:

  • In-patient
  • Outreach
  • Outpatient
  • Therapy services 
  • Education (via the Advance Care Planning Service who focus on education for those in Care Homes, GPs and District Nurses)

Our mission

Care, Educate and Engage.

Quality of Care

At Willowbrook we’re constantly adapting and evolving to create the best possible culture of care for those both within as well as outside of our walls. The first step of in this evolution was to listen. The people that we care for impressed upon us how valuable Willowbrook is to them. 

They also told us that we should help others “see in” to create greater understanding, not just of what we do in the hospice but also the support, fun, warmth and laughter that they find in our care. They also told us to “reach out” more: to deliver our service beyond the hospice walls wherever we can, so that they can continue to benefit from our care in the comfort of their own home or other preferred place of care.

This insight prompted a complete review of our Inpatient and, most significantly, our Outreach Services. Our Vision, that we continue to give ‘The best care, delivered with compassion for our community’ has never been more important. We now (Covid-19 restrictions dependant) provide all of our services virtually, residentially or at our outpatient clinics here at the hospice. We continue to develop and grow our relationships with other community organisations, seeking opportunities to provide our services to the wider community. This will enhance and improve our current provision for patients living with life-limiting illnesses.


2023/24 Quality Accounts – view this report here.

COVID-19 Risk Assessment please click on the links to read the Hospice and Living Well risk assessments.

Our aim is to enhance the quality of life for every individual throughout all stages of their illness.

What is Palliative Care?

Palliative care is the holistic and total care of someone who is approaching their end of life. It aims to maintain and improve the quality of their life, whilst offering support for their family and friends during the course of the illness and following the death of the patient.

Our Services?

We have 10 in-patient beds, hold regular out-patient clinics and are able to provide a variety of face to face, individual and group sessions within our Hospice, Monday to Friday.  

We have also implemented a virtual online support service since the disruption of Covid-19. Although approximately three-quarters of our patients have cancer we treat other life-limiting diseases such as motor neurone disease, end-stage heart failure, lung disease.

We work in partnership with the local health care community to improve the quality of life for those people living with their illness and beyond. We liaise with the Hospital Specialist Palliative Care Team, the Community Specialist Palliative Care Team and the local Primary Care Teams, including local GPs and district nurses.

Although we provide care for patients at the end of their life, our statistics show that many of our inpatients are discharged back to their preferred place of care, usually home, dispelling the myth that a Hospice is just a place where you go to die.


The Hospice has an important remit in leading and delivering an integrated Palliative Care Education programme to all healthcare professionals across the locality. This ensures that patients are cared for in the best possible way in their preferred place of care, wherever that setting may be.


As a Charity, we make no charge for our services but rely on our own fundraising efforts and a modest contribution from the NHS. This enables us to provide support to patients and their families according to their individual needs.

Our care is free to patients but is not free to provide. In 2021, it cost £4.8m to run the Hospice Organisation. We are part-funded by the NHS who make a significant contribution but, unfortunately it still leaves us to generate more than half of the costs with generous donations from the public and our own fundraising efforts to raise the remainder.


Our Fundraising team, which includes our Hospice Lottery, based at The Living Well building on Borough Road, St Helens.

We also have a separate Trading company to run our retail business that raises the necessary income from charity shops – A charity superstore in St Mary’s arcade plus other shops in Rainford, Rainhill, Billinge, Fouracre, Stockbridge Village, Sutton, The Living Well and Prescot. Our largest shop is in Prescot shopping centre which is over two floors.

We also have a large 7500 square feet donation warehouse and distribution centre in Sutton, St Helens – opposite Morrison’s supermarket.

To read more about shops please view this here

Due to the current situation with Coronavirus and for the wellbeing of our patients, we kindly ask that all monetary donations are paid direct to our bank account, via online access to Nat West Bank: 

Alternatively, use the DONATE NOW button that appears on each page of our website.

To donate £5, text HELPWILLOWBROOK to 70450.