HRH The Countess of Wessex GCVO visits Holy Cross Hospital

Her Royal Highness The Countess of Wessex has visited Holy Cross Hospital in Haslemere to mark the official opening of the Hospital’s sensory technology room.

HRH The Countess of Wessex in the Sensory Technology Room with a patient

The specialist hospital provides services for people with severe and complex disabilities. It is owned by the Congregation of the Daughters of the Cross, which is a registered charity that promotes healthcare and education.

The Countess of Wessex was greeted by the Lord Lieutenant of Surrey who introduced Sister Mary Agnes and Christopher Hinton, Holy Cross Hospital’s Chief Executive Officer. This was followed by a presentation of the Mayor of Waverley and Mayor of Haslemere.

The visit began with a tour of The Physiotherapy Centre, which is where patients are treated for a range of conditions caused by surgery, injury or disability. Her Royal Highness paused to observe an inpatient receiving treatment in the Centre’s hydrotherapy pool before visiting The Physiotherapy Centre’s first floor gym to observe an outpatient taking part in an exercise programme designed to improve her balance following a brain injury.

HRH The Countess of Wessex visits The Physiotherapy Centre gym

En route to the main hospital, The Countess of Wessex stopped to admire a display of artwork, which had been created by the inpatients’ art group. 

The Friends of Holy Cross Hospital raise a lot of money to fund projects and to buy additional items that help to improve patients’ lives. The Friends of Holy Cross, committee members and volunteers were proud to show Her Royal Highness the Senses Garden, which was created using money raised by the Friends.

The Countess of Wessex then visited St Anne’s sensory room and was given a demonstration of how modern technology, such as eye gaze software, is being used to enable very disabled patients to communicate and interact.

HRH The Countess of Wessex talks to a patient

The final part of the visit saw Her Royal Highness spend time meeting and talking with patients and their families and members of staff. To commemorate the official opening of St Anne’s sensory room, The Countess of Wessex was invited to unveil a plaque before receiving a posy of flowers and a picture painted by a patient.

Her Royal Highness thanked staff, sisters and volunteers for their love and kindness and for the trust this builds amongst patients and staff.

The visit ended with patients, family members and staff lining the hospital driveway to wave flags and to say goodbye to Her Royal Highness.

Speaking after the visit, Chief Executive, Christopher Hinton said: “We feel extremely honoured that Her Royal Highness, The Countess of Wessex was able to visit us today. We place a great emphasis on investing in technology and exploring the new opportunities it can provide for disabled patients and those who have a disorder of consciousness.

“We are extremely grateful for the generous amount of time The Countess of Wessex spent with us today and for the opportunity to discuss our work with Her Royal Highness. We have had a wonderful and most memorable day.” 

© Photos by Jake Darling, Gidden Darling Photography.