Piper leads walkers out of Caldicot Castle on hospice twilight memory walk in the country park

A lone piper was at the head of a gathering of Twilight Memory Walkers as they filed out of historic Caldicot Castle.

The walkers gathered at the castle to remember loved ones in a walk in the country park  around the grounds organised by Newport-based St David’s Hospice Care.

Harpist John Thomas, playing near the drawbridge, welcomed families and friends to the castle. Singer and organist Grace Curtis entertained as walkers signed stones of remembrance and heard moving poetry before a minute’s contemplation and a skirl of the pipes from piper Matthew Bartlett, sent them off on their walk.

Hospice minister, Andrew Webster, addressed walkers and Joanne Hume, of event sponsors, Ian Watts and Son, independent funeral directors and Gill Tanner, of St David’s Hospice Care, read remembrance poems before the near 200 people were invited to stand in silence for a minute’s contemplation.

Among the throng  and who took part in the walk were members of the family of former Gwent police constable father of one, Kyle Lewis Burns,  who was cared for by the hospice but died after a battle with bowel cancer. He was just 36.

Beth Harrington, who organised the event for St David’s Hospice Care, said: “It was a really moving and lovely event which was much appreciated by all who took part.

“The evening was bright and warm, perfect conditions for the circular, flat, mile-and-a-half walk completed by people of all ages and abilities. Caldicot castle and grounds is a perfect setting for the Twilight Memory Walk.

“We can’t thank the people who attended and Caldicot Castle staff enough for such a awesome evening of remembrance.”

Stones, which had been collected for the evening’s walk by Hermione and Imogen, decorated by walkers with the names of loved ones and carried on the walk, were left on a platform overlooking the lake while The Morganna String Quartet played.

The memory stones have now been taken back to St David’s Hospice in Newport where they will form the basis of a memorial cairn.

The Severn Tunnel Brass Band welcomed walkers, some with their dogs, others pushing buggies, some using walking sticks, back to the castle with a programme of music.

Beth said: “The stones decorated by the Twilight Memory Walkers have been taken back to Newport to live at the hospice gardens in Newport.

“The Twilight Memory Walk is open to everyone of all ages, anyone that would like to pay tribute to their loved ones. This does not have to be a patient of ours.

“We all have loved ones that we miss. Here at St David’s Hospice Care, we believe that everyone deserves bespoke, individual care which we endeavour to provide. We offer a free and comprehensive palliative care service of excellence throughout Caerphilly, Monmouthshire, Newport, Torfaen and within South and Mid Powys. We deliver support to over 3500 patients each year.

“By getting involved in the Twilight Memory Walk and raising vital sponsorship, you not only remembered your loved one but have helped our nurses to continue providing support to patients, their families and carers.”

For more information visit: https://stdavidshospicecare.org/eve…/twilight-memory-walk/