MEET SUE HOME – ONE OF THE COMMITTEE MEMBERS FROM THE FRIENDS OF THE YEATMAN HOSPITAL
If you go walking with your dog in Purlieu Field or Lenthay Common, then you will have seen Sue Home and her two lurchers; if you were present at the Royal Wedding festivities back in June, then you would have seen Sue organising the children’s fancy dress parade; if you are involved in tourism in the town, then you will probably know Sue Home from in her Tourism Forum capacity when she published the last town guide. If you go to any of the increasing number of events run by The Friends of the Yeatman Hospital then you will also recognise Sue from her close involvement with these activities. Sue and her husband, Tony, have lived in Sherborne for more than 12 years and both play an active role in supporting local charities, often by creating fun events for the community.
Read the full interview with Sue Home below:
Q: It might be my imagination but the Friends of The Yeatman Hospital (FoTYH) seem to be involved in quite a few activities over the past year or so. They certainly seem to have heightened their profile – is more going on?
SH: Yes, it does reflect a deliberate strategy to build awareness of our group; even though we celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Friends of the Yeatman Hospital this year, there are still a lot of people who don’t know about us or what we do. We are so fortunate to have a community hospital in Sherborne that it’s important to make sure it is used to its full capacity and that the patients receive the best possible care and attention.
Q: Well can you summarise what FoTYH is all about?
SH: On the one hand we want to encourage interest in and support for the hospital, making sure it has the latest facilities and equipment, and in so doing we try to identify and respond to the needs of the patients, making them as comfortable as possible. For example, at the moment we are working to raise £50,000 to provide piped oxygen; this means that there is always oxygen available when needed and no-one has to handle the big canisters which is time-consuming and hard work actually!
Q: Does the Yeatman Hospital offer most services? Lots of people probably think of Yeovil when they think of going to the hospital
SH: Well, yes, but the Yeatman does offer so much and it deserves to be more top of mind. For example, there is an excellent Minor Injuries Unit which is able to attend to people very promptly, sooner than it would take to even get to Yeovil. The facilities cover a variety of needs: x-rays, physiotherapy, opthamology, pain management – minor operations can be carried out and there is an intermediate care ward as well as a terminal care wing.
Q: Well it’s certainly a good cause and you obviously have some creative people on your committee. You seem to get involved in all sorts of fund-raisers.
SH: We have been very busy but also very fortunate this year. FoTYH was picked by Charterhouse for their annual charity auction preview and now Sainsbury’s has chosen us as their charity of the year. Also, the Chamber of Commerce has chosen us as their charity of the day for their Festive Shopping Day in December.
Q: Does this involve a lot of work on your part?
SH: Yes, but we enjoy it and we hope that people in the town can have some fun from the things we are organising. This month we are organising a Dogs’ Coffee Morning with help from Sainsbury’s – it’s taking place in Purlieu Field, well known to dog walkers and there will be a choice of cake or dog biscuits with your coffee! Thinking ahead to the town’s Festive Shopping Day in early December, we are planning a vintage bus service between Sainsbury’s and Cheap Street, also miniature pony rides for the children to see Father Christmas and a lot of other seasonal ‘happenings’, still to be revealed.
Q: It sounds like fun. You obviously enjoy being in Sherborne; what attracted you here in the first place?
SH: Well my husband and I worked in London in the travel business and we realised that – thanks to the internet – we could live anywhere really, so in 1999 we chose to come down to Sherborne to set up our own business. I had known the town for many years and always liked it. Everyone is very friendly and we’ve really made a lot of friends in the town over the years.
Q: How have you seen Sherborne change over the past 12 years?
SH: The town has definitely grown and become busier. The Foster’s Field development brought a lot of new people and energy into the town. There are some exciting new developments too, such as the planned community arts centre and the plans for Sherborne House.
Q: What are your favourite pursuits in Sherborne?
SH: We have two lovely lurcher dogs and I really enjoy my walks with them; Sherborne has such easy access to lovely open fields and commons and it’s always good to get out into the fresh air. As you can imagine, I’m very busy with my work in the community, but also as a consultant for a tour planning business. When I do have spare time, I also enjoy quilting. You never know, we might base an event around that at some time!