Great-grandma helps recoup hospice cash with Easter ‘chick knit’

A GREAT-GRANDMOTHER from Denton has helped to mend more than 1,000 chicks in time for Easter to raise funds for a children’s hospice. 

Beryl Wood made a daily 15-mile round trip to Francis House in Didsbury to collect the occupants of ‘chick hospital’.

She was one of many knitters who picked up their needles after the hospice’s appeal to send in characterful knitted Easter chicks and bunnies.

Hospice staff were ‘egg-static’ when a final count revealed a w-hopping 35,000 chicks had flown through their doors. 

Beryl Wood chick knit volunteer at Francis House Children’s Hospice

The cute creations – donated by schools, supermarkets and other local businesses – are filled with a small chocolate egg, before being sold for £2 each.

Beryl was among the band of dedicated volunteers who set to work repairing crooked beaks, missing eyes and saggy bottoms that couldn’t hold a chocolate egg.

“When they showed me the chick hospital, I picked out two chicks which were beautifully knitted but one had an eye on the side of its head – I couldn’t believe it,” she said.

“When they showed me the chick hospital, I picked out other knitters I think are using an old pattern from when the eggs were bigger, now they’re smaller, the eggs fall out. I’m happy to do the repairs as they bring a smile to your face.

Thousands of knitted chicks and bunnies donated to Francis House Children’s Hospice

“If I’m not knitting chicks for Francis House, I’m making hats for premature babies or homeless people. My mum taught me to knit when I was seven and I love it. I can watch the television and talk to people when I knit, my hands need to be doing something.”

Beryl’s house is so packed full of craft materials that she can ‘hardly move’ and she even took her knitting on holiday to Australia.

“There’s no point sitting and not knitting,” she said.

Anyone hoping to buy a chick while stocks last can visit a Google map of 70 vendors:

Francis House provides care to the families of children and young adults with life-limiting and life-threatening conditions – services include respite care, homecare, sibling support, end of life care and bereavement support.

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