The first Tree of Tranquility in England, which was funded by Aidan's Elephants (with heartfelt thanks to the many families who have made donations and supported us over the last six years), was placed within the grounds of Airedale Hospital at the end of May this year. The Sunbeam Support Group midwives and parents continued their tireless and dedicated work in fundraising for and creating the beautiful Sunbeam Garden, which provides a tranquil, secure space for this very special sculpture, a meaningful place where families can visit to remember and honour their children.
The Sunbeam Team are hosting a launch event of The Sunbeam Garden on Sunday the 14th of October at 12 noon, and warmly welcome everyone to gather in the garden to celebrate the joint achievements of so many generous families, the Sunbeam Team, Aidan's Elephants and SiMBA.
This is a family event which children are very welcome to attend and refreshments will be provided. If you plan to attend, please kindly email Beverley Beaumont (Airedale NHSFT Bereavement Midwife) with the number of people. There is also a Facebook Event page you can respond to.
Free parking has been arranged by the hospital for this event. Parking is situated at the back of the hospital. When you enter the hospital grounds, pass A&E and follow the perimeter road round to pass the old staff accommodation on the right. The parking, called 'The Beach', is situated on the furthest point to the right before the road bends to the left and up towards the West Car Park and Sunbeam Garden. If you need further assistance with where to park, please contact Beverley Beaumont.
If you have ordered a copper leaf from SiMBA that you have yet to return, please ensure it reaches SiMBA before the 9th of October to ensure that it is attached to the Tree before the launch event. Leaves returned after the 9th will be bonded to the Tree at a later date.
Click here for further information about the Tree of Tranquility, or to order a copper leaf.
Today was a very special day, which we have been working towards, along with Beverly Beaumont (Bereavement Midwife at Airedale NHSFT) and Grant & Sara Fitzsimmons from the Scottish Charity SiMBA, for over five years.
The Tree of Tranquility was installed within Airedale Hospital's Grounds today, in a secure, beautiful space which is being transformed into The Sunbeam Garden. The Sunbeam Support Group midwives and parents are working tirelessly to create a tranquil, meaningful surrounding for this very special sculpture.
On behalf of the Sunbeam Support Group, we are delighted to announce that the stunning Sunbeam Gates are now in place to secure the Sunbeam Baby Remembrance Garden at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust. The wrought iron gates were lovingly hand made by Colin Whittaker at Iron by Design in Steeton, based on designs put together by the Sunbeam Group midwives and Sunbeam Group families. The funding for the Sunbeam Gates has been provided by the Sunbeam Support Group, acquired through kind donations from families and many fundraising efforts.
We would like to say an enormous thank you to everyone who has been involved in designing and funding this beautiful entry point to the Garden. Special thank yous from ourselves and many other families go out to Colin Whittaker for his care and attention to detail in making the gates, to Steve Marshall (ANHSFT's Gardener) who has been a source of constant inspiration throughout the planning of the Sunbeam Garden as a whole. We can not thank him enough for his tireless support, guidance and hard work on the Sunbeam Garden project. And a very special thank you to Bev Beaumont (ANHSFT's Bereavement Midwife) for her endless communication with Colin Whittaker, for ensuring that every parent who is part of the Sunbeam Group was able to contribute their ideas to the gates, and for working so hard to ensure that the gates to the Sunbeam Garden were a perfect representation of what the Garden means to so many people. There is an incredible team of people working very hard to bring the Sunbeam Garden together, and we are honoured to be a part of that.
One of the conditions of a Tree of Tranquility being placed within Airedale Hospital's grounds, was that the Tree must be secured in a space with locked entry. The production of the Sunbeam Gates was a key factor in Airedale Hospital being approved as the site for the first Tree of Tranquility in England. So much thought has gone into the Sunbeam Garden, from the choices of plants and paving stones, right down to the gate which protects this safe haven for families. The hands and feet represent the little loved ones who are remembered within the Garden's walls. The little elephant represents Aidan's Elephants and the Sunbeam Support Group. And the beautiful vines and leaves represent the Tree of Tranquility and the many families who will gather around it to remember their children. These gates are a true piece of heart work, carefully thought out by those who know and feel their significance.
The Sunbeam Gates are currently in place in the entry way of the Sunbeam Garden. However they will need to be temporarily removed once heavy machinery is needed in the garden to build the raised flower beds and new paths. Some of the paintwork will be given it's final touches when they are removed. They are a welcome and inspiring replacement to the original gates shown below.
The first discussions and plans for Airedale NHS Foundation Trust's Baby Remembrance Garden began many years ago, and this incredible project is now in it's final stages of completion.
Along with Airedale's Bereavement Midwife (Bev Beaumont) and Bereavement Team, we fell in love with the idea of providing a permanent sculpture in the Baby Remembrance Garden, which could bear the names or special dates of babies and children who were held in their parents hearts. We found that SiMBA (a Scottish charity which supports bereaved parents) already provided/funded unique baby memorial trees in Scotland, and we aspired to fund SiMBA to place one of their trees in Airedale's Baby Remembrance Garden.
We are honoured to formally announce that Aidan's Elephants, working in partnership with Airedale NHS Foundation Trust (ANHSFT)'s Bereavement Team and SiMBA, have been able to secure and fully fund the placement of a Tree of Tranquility within the Sunbeam Baby Remembrance Garden (situated at ANHSFT). The tree is a beautifully hand crafted, life size sculpture made from recycled metals. It will bear individual leaves which can be engraved with personal messages, each one representing a forever loved and missed baby or child.
Parents will be able to order copper leaves (at no cost) to have engraved with their baby's name/date or a special message. The engraving can be done at anywhere that parents wish, but we will provide a list of local, approved engravers who have agreed a set fee for engraving and will be aware of the emotional significance of the leaves. Parents can hold on to their leaves for as long as they wish. When they feel ready, the leaves can be posted back to SiMBA, who will bond each one to the tree. Initially all returned leaves will be bonded when the Tree is first placed. From then on, leaves will be bonded to the tree periodically (we estimate once or twice a year). The leaves are individually photographed when they are bonded to the tree by SiMBA, and each parent will receive a beautiful photograph of their child's leaf once it has been bonded onto the tree.
Five Trees of Tranquility (in Borders, Edinburgh & Lothians, Glasgow, Inverness and Orkney) exist in Scotland, each one funded and placed by SiMBA. Airedale's Tree of Tranquility will be the first to be placed in the UK. The funding that Aidan's Elephants has released for this tree (a total of £11,640) has been contributed to by every family who has supported the Non-Profit Organisation. The Tree is part of the legacy of every baby and child who has inspired people to donate, fundraise or provide any kind of support for Aidan's Elephants. Because of those treasured children and their families, we have the privilege of being able to fund a unique and invaluable addition to the Sunbeam Baby Remembrance Garden.
To the families who have helped make the purchase of this tree possible, through donations large and small, thank you from the bottom of our hearts, for all your support in making this aspiration become a reality. We would also like to say a special thank you to Bev Beaumont (Airedale's Bereavement Midwife) for all her hard work and dedication in helping to bring the Tree of Tranquility to Airedale. The Tree being placed in Airedale's Baby Remembrance Garden is something that Bev has dreamed of for a long time, and she has been instrumental in it's placement. The Tree of Tranquility is a breathtaking piece of artwork, which we feel will bring so much comfort to both newly bereaved families and those who sadly lost their children many, many years ago. It is an honour to have been trusted with the memorial funds of so many little loved ones over the years, and a privilege for us to be able to use those funds to create something so special for a whole community of parents and their families.
Work on producing the Tree of Tranquility will begin in the next few weeks, and the Tree is estimated to be placed within the Hospital's Sunbeam Baby Remembrance Garden in Spring 2018. Within the next few weeks, we look forward to being able to provide order forms for parents to order their leaves in advance, so that the leaves can be attached to the Tree as soon as it is in place.
If anyone would like any further information about the Tree of Tranquility, please get in touch with us.
* Images of the five existing Trees of Tranquility and leaves shared with permission from SiMBA.
For many years, the staff at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust (ANHSFT) have been exploring the idea of creating a baby memorial garden within the hospital grounds.
In July this year, with the help of David Moss (Deputy Director of Strategy, Business Development, Estates and Facilities at ANHSFT), a secure area within the hospital grounds was approved by The Airedale Foundation Trust Board. Finding a secure, private area was particularly important, as the garden has been planned around the concept of a memorial statue which parents can attach their babies' names to.
Airedale NHS Foundation Trust's Head Gardener, Steve Marshall has worked closely with the Bereavement Team and local families, to drawn up designs for the garden.
The Baby Memorial Garden will be named 'The Sunbeam Garden', due to it's vast support from families who attend the local bereaved parents support group which is run by Airedale Midwives.
The Bereavement team and supporting co-workers at Airedale NHS Foundation Trust have worked (and are working) incredibly hard to create a safe, special place for bereaved families in the local area to visit and remember their children. We look forward to sharing progress with you as this beautiful project continues. If you would like to help with the Sunbeam Garden in any way, please get in touch.