Dame Angela Watkinson showed her support for Universal Children’s Day by visiting Haven House and opening our new refurbished playground on Friday 20 November.

The Hornchurch and Upminster MP toured the hospice and met with staff, children, parents and Chief Executive, Mike Palfreman.

She formally opened our playground which has been given a £20,000 makeover courtesy of generous grants from DHL UK Foundation and the Property Professionals Breakfast Club.

The playground has a new all-weather surface which means it can be used for longer periods in late spring and early autumn. It also features a new wheelchair swing which was generously funded by the Property Professionals Breakfast Club.

Getting outdoors and playing in the fresh air is important for our children who use Haven House as it can help with their development and enjoyment. There is often a lack of suitable disability space in urban areas where many of our children live and very few playgrounds will have a wheelchair swing.

Dame Angela’s visit coincided with Universal Children's Day. Established in 1954, the event held each year on 20 November is designed to promote international togetherness and awareness among children worldwide.

Dame Angela Watkinson CBE MP said: “I was delighted to visit Haven House on Universal Children's Day and open its new refurbished playground. The hospice does fantastic work in supporting life-limited children and their families in some of the most difficult circumstances imaginable.”

Mike Palfreman, Chief Executive of Haven House said: “We were delighted that Dame Angela opened our new playground on Universal Children’s Day. It was an opportunity to mark the vital role of hospices in supporting life-limited children throughout the United Kingdom.

“We would also like to thank DHL UK Foundation and the Property Professionals Breakfast Club for their fantastic work in transforming our playground. We couldn’t have done this without their help.”