Three of Liverpool’s hospitals have signed up to a national initiative aimed at providing additional support following the death of a loved one.

Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (LUHFT) – which runs Aintree, Broadgreen and the Royal Liverpool hospitals – has unveiled the first of 50 ‘Sit With Hope’ benches which will be located across its hospital sites to support those dealing with grief and loss. 

The benches are part of an initiative by The Good Grief Trust, a bereavement charity that launched its national Sit With Hope campaign at the Royal Windsor Flower last month with a film featuring the actors Dame Penelope Wilton DBE, Patron, and Greg Wise, Ambassador of the charity.

Each of the benches involved in the campaign will feature a plaque with a QR code, which directly connects to the charity’s website and signposts users to online advice and resources as well as local support services available to them.

To mark the launch of the initiative at LUHFT, the first bench in the garden of the Royal Liverpool University Hospital was unveiled by the Trust’ Director of Corporate Nursing, Fiona Murphy MBE, who works in collaboration with The Good Grief Trust. She was joined by Natalie Hudson, Royal Liverpool University Hospital Executive Managing Director, David Melia, Chief Nurse, Dr Jim Gardner, Chief Medical Officer and Stewart Crowe, Assistant Director of Health and Safety.

Fiona Murphy MBE said: “We understand that grief is a very personal emotion and that everyone deals with it differently. Our goal is that these benches will provide an opportunity for anyone in our hospitals who is dealing with loss – whether patients, visitors or staff – a place to sit and reflect and also seek further help during a difficult time.”


The benches are intended as an additional resource to the support already offered by the SWAN Model of Care at LUHFT. The model allows the Trust to provide immediate support to families from a SWAN nurse who supports and guides the care of patients and their loved ones at the end of life and after they have died.

Linda Magistris, Founder of the Good Grief Trust, said: “It’s amazing that LUHFT has pledged to support the Sit with Hope initiative. We hope that those who make use of the benches will know that they are not alone and that access to a wealth of services such as local charities, grief cafes and online resources are readily available to them in their time of need.”

View a short clip of Fiona explaining more about the initiative here.