An Eltham hospice welcomed children it has supported for the past five years at its birthday celebrations last week.

Demelza Hospice Care for Children was opened in Wensley Close facility in 2009 by the charity's vice presidents Robin Cousins and Jayne Torvill. From just 37 when it first opened, it now helps support more than 200 children with life-threatening conditions from across the area.

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Staff and volunteers joined young people and families - some of whom have used the hospice since it opened - for the six-bed hospice's fifth birthday party. 

The festivities included a disco, entertainment from a dance group, a specially made 50-inch birthday cake, a tombola, a face painter, merchandise stalls a raffle and arts and crafts.

Head of care Sarah Carter said: "I’ve been privileged to be part of such a crucial service which has been helping more and more families across south east London over the past five years. 

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"We are enabling families to become families again rather than carers, we are empowering young people to experience normal activities and we are allowing families to access the care and support they need either in the hospice or in their community.

"It was great to be able to mark our fifth birthday by spoiling some of our families with a party and we hope to be able to support even more families who need our help over the next five years."

Also as part of the celebrations around 120 walkers took part in a 5k walk around Greenwich Park followed by a barbecue at Devonport House to raise money for the charity, which needs to generate £8m this year.

To find out more about Demelza, visit their website.