'Princess Diana sat on the end of Mum's bed at Loros, and we chatted about Danielle Steel' @ 18 September 2015 09:24 AM
Photo: Charles and Diana arrive at Loros in 1986.
Angela Hardwicke's mother, Mary, was one of the very first patients at Loros hospice 30 years ago.
"I was trying to look after her but she was in Oadby and I was in Clarendon Park, plus I had two young children – it was hard and I was struggling. I didn't know I could get any help but then I heard about Loros," Angela recalls.
Her mum, Mary Crew, 76, was diagnosed with lung cancer in 1982 and Angela soon became her full-time carer.
Mary went to Loros just before Christmas, 1985.
"I used to enjoy coming to Loros," said Angela. "It was a small ward back then, with six or eight beds. I'd come over most days while the kids were at school.
"Mum was very well looked after. The nurses were brilliant, they were so happy and they were always singing.
"Mum was so stubborn, but all of the nurses were so patient with her.
"I remember she would only eat ice cream. Then one day, she refused to eat that as well but she said she fancied a gin and tonic, so we compromised and said she could have the gin if it was poured over the ice cream.
"I don't think she ate anything other than ice-cream covered with gin after that!"
In 1986, Prince Charles and Princess Diana officially opened the hospice – a day Angela said she would never forget.
"I was thrilled to bits when mum hung on to meet Prince Charles and Princess Diana," she said.
Angela said she brought a "new frock" especially – a red one, like the bright-coloured ones the nurses used to wear.
"We all had to sit around the ward and we were told what to do, but by the time they had come in, I had forgotten everything, she said.
"Princess Diana – well she was the most beautiful woman I have ever seen and she was so elegant.
"Mum was holding a Danielle Steel book when Princess Diana sat on the end of her bed and said, 'oh my favourite author' and we just chatted about the book, I forgot all the protocol.
"It was such an important visit for everyone. It made all of the hard work so worthwhile. It was just the most amazing day."
Mary died at Loros in July 1986.
"Loros will always have a special place in my heart," added Angela.
Throughout September, Loros is celebrating three decades of caring. To get involved and help the hospice turn 30, visit
Soure: Leicester Mercury
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