CHARITY volunteers who fundraise Arrowe Park Hospital for Romanian orphans and cancer sufferers fear their efforts will be curtailed as refurbishment plans threaten their kiosk.
Delphine Hughes, from Wallasey, is among fundraisers who sell items in aid of charities in the hospital foyer and is concerned plans to move their kiosk to the basement will put their project in jeopardy.
Hospital bosses reassured patients last year the kiosks would stay after dozens of Globe readers got in touch to express their anger about losing them.
At the time, a spokesman said that volunteers should “keep their activity to the confines of the kiosk” to ensure the corridor was kept clear.
It comes as £1.6m plans to revamp the front entrance of the hospital get underway.
But Delphine, 73, who fundraises for orphan charity Ecce-Homo, said she has now been told the kiosks will be relocated in the hospital’s basement restaurant, Bowman’s.
She said: “A table in the restaurant down in the basement is not a kiosk. When it was first decided to improve the entrance to the hospital, they wanted to get rid of the charity shop and just have us standing with a collection bucket and a poster in the foyer area, but as we pointed out to him we would not raise very much doing that.
“People do not have money to just give away these days, they want something in return and with the charity shop we gave them that so it was agreed we could continue to sell items in the foyer area and renovated a decent sized wall cupboard for us on a temporary basis while the work was being done.
“We were told we would eventually have a new kiosk but now it seems we’re being moved downstairs. People usually buy from us on their way out after visiting times but they are not going to go out of their way to the basement.
“This could put people off fundraising at the hospital and therefore lead to a detrimental effect on the charities.”
However the hospital said volunteers will be able to give out leaflets in the foyer on a pre-bookable basis although goods should be sold in Bowman’s.
A spokesman said: “The Trust is making a number of changes over the coming months to refurbish and improve the quality of our facilities within the main public areas at Arrowe Park Hospital.
“The next phase of our First Impressions Programme involves a full refurbishment of the hospitals main foyer. This covers the area from the main entrance doors through to the lift lobby.
“As access and public flow will be reduced during these improvement works, all charitable organisations we work with have been written to about these forthcoming changes and about alternative arrangements we are putting in place.
“From July 1, all charitable organisations will be placed within our busy hospital restaurant. On completion of the new main entrance foyer, the Trust has allocated a designated area in which charitable organisations can pre-book.
“This area will be for collections and the display of promotional materials only due to the floor space available and to keep the main entrance area as free flowing as possible.
“Charitable organisations wishing to sell items of goods, or require a larger floor space, will still be able to book a stand in our busy hospital restaurant.”