TEN thousand lights will be switched on in memory of loved ones at Wirral Hospice St John's in two weeks' time.

Taking place on Sunday, December 6, this year's Light Up A Life switch-on it will have a very different feel because of the coronavirus pandemic.

For the past 24 years, the Globe-backed outdoor service has taken place in front of thousands in the hospice gardens and is the perfect way to remember loved ones in the run-up to Christmas.

Regrettably, due to the COVID-19 restrictions and to keep everyone safe, the hospice has made the difficult decision to cancel the outdoor service, which sadly includes the viewing of loved one’s names in the hospice Books of Honour.

So the hospice aims to reach out to even more families across Wirral with a pre-recorded service, taking place online that night 6pm.

Once switched on, the lights will shine out from trees around the hospice gardens in the run up to and during Christmas, offering people uplifting and meaningful way to remember family and friends no longer with us.

The online service will feature a short film capturing the spirit of the lights switch-on, interspersed with carols from a socially-distanced hospice choir featuring locally-renowned singer, Sarah Mullis.

It will also contain the recollections of people whose families have experienced the hospice’s dedicated care as well as heartfelt thoughts and readings from the hospice team, including some wonderful volunteers.

A Hospice spokesperson said: "Support is needed more than ever, which is why the hospice is inviting everyone, individuals and businesses, to sponsor a light to remember their loved ones and to help fund the hospice’s cherished medical and nursing services.

"People sponsoring a light will have the name of the person they are remembering entered into the specially produced books which, for this year, will be available to view online while a personal copy can be pre-ordered for viewing at home."

A Light up a Life card with a personalised greeting will be sent out to all who request one and there is also the opportunity to buy a metallic silver star tree decoration keepsake inscribed with the words Light up a Life.

Julia Evans, the hospice's fundraising development manager told the Globe: "For the past 24 years Light up a Life has brought people together to remember our loved ones and reflect the loss we all feel, especially around Christmas time.

"In these unique and challenging times we are so grateful that our Wirral community is continuing to support the hospice.

"We would normally have the company of around two thousand people at the lights switch-on and we're going to miss everyone so much this year.

"We really cannot thank people enough as they continue to make their kind and thoughtful donations for Light up a Life which makes a massive contribution to the specialist care the hospice provides to our patients and their family and friends."

To sponsor a light for Light up a Life call 0151 343 0778 or visit www.wirralhospice.org/light-up-a-life to make a donation online.