Lisa's story

Lisa Radcliffe Full Story Quote

I wish you knew that a children’s hospice isn’t a place to be scared of but a haven of peace – somewhere joy can be found and cherished memories created. I speak from experience, after my son, George, was diagnosed with a soft tissue tumour, rhabdomyosarcoma, in May 2022 and we became part of the East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) family. George had surgery that summer and then radiotherapy but, unfortunately, neither was successful. Sadly, he died in October.

At the end, an EACH nurse pulled me to one side and explained there was no right or wrong way to deal with things. It put me at ease, as though a blanket of care, love and professional support had been wrapped around the three of us – myself, George and my husband, David.


People deal with grief differently. Some skirt round the subject and others come into our house, see a photo and start talking about George. If there's anything I've learned when someone loses a child it’s don't pretend it didn't happen. We love nothing more than talking about George and, likewise, EACH.

A measure of the impact it’s had on us is the fact we love coming back to Milton. I know some parents struggle in that respect, because of the memories it holds. However, we feel differently because George enjoyed it so much. Milton was his adventure playground and he felt joy and excitement every time he visited. In fact, he said it was his fourth favourite place after Legoland, the Latitude festival, where he saw George Ezra, his favourite singer, and Dinosaur World! It beat the Isle of Wight, where we had our family holiday last year, and going to see Arsenal play at the Emirates. An awful lot of other things came below EACH, which is incredible!

My shoulders dropped every time we entered the hospice. It gave me a moment of calm and time to breathe, while the staff stepped in and allowed me to step back. George and I did lots of self-care days and it was lovely sitting on the sofa, having a cup of tea and watching him play. We did art and music activities and, when he needed medical care, there was always someone on hand to help.

We’ll always feel a connection with EACH. Our time there was seamless, because we knew and trusted everyone. The staff felt like family and it’s such a well-oiled machine, with all cogs working together to make a family’s experience as positive as possible. George was made to feel like number one and I can guarantee every other child felt the same way. It was a happy, safe space for the three of us.

At the moment, my focus is on volunteering for EACH and I helped collect Christmas trees as part of the recycling fundraiser in January. I'm not working at the moment, so, while I've got a bit of time, I'd like to give something back. We'll see what the future holds but I feel confident we'll always have a very special, lifelong relationship with EACH.

Lisa Radcliffe, George’s mum

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