MEET Simon Attwell, the new chief executive of Bury Hospice.

The former trustee brings a wealth of experience to his new role as the chief executive of the hospice — which cares for people with life-limiting illnesses and their families.

Mr Attwell, aged 68, lives just beyond Affetside on the Bury and Bolton border, with wife Ann. They have two daughters and two grandchildren.

The qualified chartered accountant has spent much of his working life abroad, living in Zambia and later Saudi Arabia, where the youngest of his two daughters was born.

His involvement in the charity sector spans the last 16 years, including becoming chair of the board of trustees at national health and social care charity Community Integrated Care, before his retirement in 2014.

Mr Attwell, who joined Bury Hospice as a trustee around two years ago, spoke to the Bury Times about his vision for the


He said: “Top of the agenda is that we are here to support people with life-shortening illnesses in their place of choice — that might be in the hospice or in their own homes.

“Our staff and the people we work with are specialists in care. The compassion we show every hour of every day is what separates us from an overstretched and under-resourced NHS.

“However, we also have to pay the bills. We have to be certain that we can continue to provide that help and support.

“Our vision is to put our clinical services at the heart of what we do, driven by the needs of the community.”

Another key aim of the former trustee is to open up two more beds at the site’s in-patient unit.

Bury Hospice has 12 beds available but, due to finances, there are currently only six in use.

Mr Attwell said: “We are hopeful that, with the help of the community and the support that is coming in, we will be able to open up two more beds within the next five to seven


There is generally a waiting list of three Bury residents at any one time.

Mr Attwell is also focused on raising additional funds for the hospice.

Bury CCG has increased the annual grant it gives the hospice, pledging £429,000 on April 1.

“All hospices are always under pressure regarding money and that is why we have been so pleased to see the support from the community," said Mr Attwell.

“There are a lot of events planned throughout the year to raise funds. Every little helps.”

The new CEO will undertake the role on a part-time basis, though he said: “My wife said I have never done anything part-time.

"This is a full-time commitment.”

In his spare time, Mr Attwell enjoys watching Lancashire County Cricket Club with friends.

He said: “I’m one of those boring guys who likes to watch it.

"We are an eclectic bunch of ex-prison governors, trade unionists and others with a mutual enjoyment of red wine.”