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Donation made to bereavement charity The Compassionate Friends

Cheque presentation at mintlyn crematorium
Cllr Kathy Mellish, David Clayton, Cllr Carol Bower, Jane Heatrick, Warren Heatrick, Bev Mitchell

Published: Thursday, 15th June 2017

The Mayor of King’s Lynn & West Norfolk, Cllr Carol Bower, presented Jane Heatrick of The Compassionate Friends with a cheque for £5,000 on Thursday 15 June at Mintlyn Crematorium.

The donation has been raised through a charitable scheme, operated by the Institute of Cemetery and Crematorium Management (ICCM), of which Mintlyn Crematorium is a member. Under the scheme metal from medical implants is recycled after cremation, with the consent of the family of the deceased. Twice a year the institute asks its scheme members to nominate local charities, which help to support people to cope with the death of loved ones, to receive a donation.

In the six years that Mintlyn Crematorium has been part of the scheme, just over £47,000 has been donated to local charities. This year, staff at Mintlyn Crematorium have chosen to support the fundraising work of The Compassionate Friends.

Cllr Kathy Mellish, borough council cabinet member for Human Resources, Facilities and Shared Services, said: “I am very proud that the Borough Council of King's Lynn & West Norfolk continues, through this scheme, to be able to support such deserving causes. Organisations like The Compassionate Friends provide support to people at a time when they need it most, and I’m so glad that the borough council can contribute to their wonderful work in this way”.

Jane Heatrick, of the King’s Lynn branch of The Compassionate Friends, said: "This huge amount of money will make such a difference to our local group: until now we had survived on small donations and proceeds from a quiz we had organised. This donation will enable us to do so many things such as pay our meeting room rent, and publicise our group to a wider audience.

"Compassionate Friends was such a comfort to our family when we lost our son Joe and daughter-in-law Vera in 2004. Nobody understands the grief and pain of losing a child like someone who has had the same devastating loss. That is what we offer at TCF: a place to talk about our children, compassion, and kindness.

"We meet at The Friends' Meeting House, 38 Bridge Street, Kings Lynn PE30 5AB on the first Monday of each month at 7:30pm. Call us on 01366 387953 or email"

The Compassionate Friends (TCF) is a charitable organisation of bereaved parents, siblings and grandparents dedicated to the support and care of other similarly bereaved family members who have suffered the death of a child or children of any age and from any cause.

TCF was founded in 1969 by Joe and Iris Lawley, whose son Kenneth was killed in a road traffic accident, and Bill and Joan Henderson, whose son Billy died from cancer, both in May 1968. The two families found comfort and support from sharing their grief, and decided to offer this to others similarly bereaved.

Today, TCF is a national organisation with dozens of support groups and contacts. TCF also offers online and telephone support, and a programme of support events throughout the year. To find out more, visit

Mintlyn Crematorium is owned and operated by the Borough Council of King’s Lynn & West Norfolk. Previously, the crematorium used money raised through the Institute of Cemetery and Crematorium Management (ICCM) scheme to support EACH, Scotty’s Little Soldiers, SANDS (Stillborn and Neonatal Death Society), Friends in Bereavement, Nelson’s Journey, The Norfolk Hospice, Tapping House, and SOBS (Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide).

Also see