A beloved community hospice which works with the terminally ill has welcomed a new chief executive to lead them into a new era.
Robin Webb began work at St Luke's Hospice, based in Kenton Road, Kenton, two weeks ago after the charity last year said farewell to Mike Coward, who was in the role for 13 years.
Mr Webb said: “This is my eleventh day in the job but everywhere I go I meet passionate people, talking about the work St Luke’s does, and almost everybody has a personal story to tell about the hospice.”
No stranger to Harrow, Mr Webb's son and daughter both attended St John's Church of England School, a primary school in Stanmore Hill, Stanmore.
The 48-year-old, who lives in Hertfordshire, previously worked in finance for Barclays, eventually heading their community projects across the UK, before working for the health and fitness charity YMCA in Hertfordshire.
He said: “It was that experience that really showed me the incredible work charities can do in their communities.
“One of the key things for St Luke’s of course is our palliative care, because our approach isn't what many people think.
“When people hear the word ‘hospice’, they think about caring for people in the last few weeks of their lives, but it can be a year or more, so we work to ensure people lead fulfilling lives, and continue to enjoy their lives.”
The hospice, which serves both Brent and Harrow, was supported by the Observer in celebrating its 25th anniversary with a successful year-long fundraising campaign which generated £250,000, but for the charity the fundraising never stops.
Mr Webb said: “Because we get less than 30 per cent of our funding from the NHS, we rely on our 800 dedicated volunteers and all the fundraising events to support our work for those we care for and their families.
“So we owe a big thank you to those volunteers and to those who make it all happen.
“Our biggest regular events are usually the Midnight Walk, and the next one is on June 27, and it is an amazing event so we are hoping to make it even bigger this year and hopefully your readers will join us in doing that.”
In January, following Mr Coward’s departure, St Luke's appointed Robert Creighton as its interim chief executive and he played a role in appointing Mr Webb as his permanent successor before his fixed-term contract came to an end.