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Hospital guarantees a bright welcome, thanks to florists

​Visitors to a hospital unit in Ipswich are guaranteed a bright and cheery welcome thanks to a generous gesture by a popular town florists.

Each week, Bedwells Florists in Foxhall Road are donating flowers for the reception of the Woodlands unit on the site of Ipswich Hospital.

Lesley Bradshaw, a nurse on the unit, which is run by Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT), said the flowers had made a real difference.

"The entrance to the Woodlands unit is quite dark and the flowers have helped to brighten it up and make it more welcoming for patients, visitors and staff," she said.

"Members of the public visiting friends and relatives have remarked that the flowers make them feel welcome at what is often a difficult time in their lives.

"On behalf of all the staff based at Woodlands, I'd like to offer Bedwells a heartfelt thank you for their amazing generosity."

The tie-up with Bedwells came about after Mrs Bradshaw popped in to buy some flowers for a colleague and got talking with staff there.

She said the florists have been giving flowers such as gerbras, carnations, statice, alstromeria and chrysanthemums.

The florists was founded in Ipswich town centre by Doug and Joyce Bedwell in 1947 and last September moved to its current location at 97 Foxhall Road. The Bedwells' daughter, Ann Burtenshaw, is now one of its three co-owners.

Ann said: "We provide an arrangement every week using different flowers in order to keep things fresh."

Before Bedwells stepped in, Beth Clayton, Lead Nurse, ECT Team, who works on the unit and is a "Wellbeing Champion" for Woodlands staff, would regularly bring in flowers from her own garden or, in winter, purchase them herself for the reception area.

Caption: Sam Pisaturo, a partner in Bedwells Florists, presents a flower arrangement to Beth Clayton.

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