Gail and Lawrence Robinson's volunteering journey - East Cheshire Hospice

Gail and Lawrence Robinson’s volunteering journey

Gardening, baking cakes, singing, flower arranging and moving furniture…all to help East Cheshire Hospice.

That is a typical week for volunteers Lawrence and Gail Robinson whose vocation in life is to help others.

The Macclesfield couple are continuing a family tradition.

Lawrence, a retired solicitor, said: “It’s inbred and we’re carrying on from how our parents lived their lives.

“They were very involved in the community and that’s how we see life, helping others, or doing things for them.”

Wife Gail will garden at the Hospice every Wednesday from March 1, as part of the 12-strong group who have already been out planting snowdrops in the new courtyard.

Gail is also a stand-by flower arranger, bakes cakes for coffee mornings and sings in Claritas Choir, which supports the Hospice.

Their next concert is at Packhorse Bowling Club on March 23.

Gail Robinson (second right) with fellow volunteer gardeners in 2021. From left, Mark Reddiough, Pat Dawson, Nev Wardle, Gail and Lindsay Taylor.

Gail also encourages visitors to buy Hospice items at the library charity card shop, while volunteering for Hearing Dogs for Deaf People and The Children’s Society at Christmas.

She is a church warden at St John the Evangelist Church, where Lawrence is treasurer and ‘general dogsbody.’ Gail is also a governor at St John’s School.

Gail said: “It’s a full week, especially as I look after my elderly mother and I’m also a guider and advise on diversity and inclusion for Cheshire Border Girlguides.

“We’ve a Brownie and Rainbow arts day coming up and have a deaf Brownie, so I’ll go along and make sure her provision is sufficient.

“I’m also a signer. I was Lay Chaplain for Deaf and Disabled People in Chester Diocese for 18 years, signing at weddings, baptisms, funerals and regular communion services. I also advised churches on accessibility.”

Meanwhile, Lawrence drives furniture vans. He said: “We volunteer to support the work of the Hospice. We’re fortunate we’ve never had a close relative in need of its services, but we’ve lost several friends whose families really appreciated the care.”

Their daughter Nancy was born with arthrogryposis, a rare muscle disorder, though Gail’s interest in disability began as a schoolgirl.

She lived near Seashell Trust, in Cheadle Hulme, when it was a school for the Deaf.

She said: “That got me interested in signing. I wanted to communicate with the kids on swings in the park.

“I learned to finger spell in the brownies and that started my interest in communication with the Deaf.”

* If you are interested in donating a small amount of time to support the Hospice visit to find out more.

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