2nd October 2021

Thieves target hospice elephant farewell events

Thieves have targeted a hospice fundraising event in Worcester, taking equipment and merchandise worth thousands of pounds and leaving organiser St Richard’s Hospice to step up existing security at huge cost to the Worcestershire-based charity.

Tricia Cavell, Fundraising Director at St Richard's Hospice, stands with a large blue elephant sculpture on a grassy pitch. She wears a long black coat, black trousers and jumper. She is not smiling. The sky is grey.
Tricia Cavell, Fundraising Director at St Richard’s Hospice, pictured at the Worcester’s Big Parade Farewell Event after the break in

Staff arriving at the Worcester’s Big Parade Farewell Events on Saturday morning (2 October) discovered their locked marquee broken into and audio-visual equipment and hospice merchandise missing.

Fundraising Director, Tricia Cavell, said: “We are devastated that our Worcester’s Big Parade Farewell Event venue was broken into over the weekend in what appears to be a calculated act that took place between overnight security patrols.

“We brought our elephant parade to the city to raise awareness of and funds for the care that we provide to local people, something we offer free of charge to those in need.  We are so sad that our event would be targeted in this way and that thieves have taken items which serve to raise funds for our care.

“Thankfully, our elephant sculptures remain safe and we look forward to welcoming supporters to our remaining events taking place this weekend and again from Thursday 7 to Sunday 10 October.  We will be stepping up the security provision we already had in place, something which will likely cost thousands for the remaining 10 days that the sculptures are in situ.

“If anyone saw anything in the early hours of Saturday morning which might help police with their enquiries we would urge you to get in touch with them.  Please call 101 and use the crime reference number: 00171_I_02102021”

St Richard’s Hospice cares for adults with a serious progressive illness, improving their quality of life from diagnosis, during treatment and to their last days. It also supports their loved ones.

Each year the hospice team supports more than 2,900 patients, family members and bereaved people in Worcestershire.

St Richard’s is an independent charity and relies on donations and gifts in Wills for the majority of its income with 20% funded by the NHS.

Worcester’s Big Parade is a Wild in Art project, brought to the city by St Richard’s Hospice.

It is supported by partners Crowngate, Worcester City Council, Worcester Business Improvement District (BID), DRPG, West Midland Safari Park, the Worcester News and BBC Hereford & Worcester.