PEOPLE can now send special parcels and messages to their loved ones at Airedale Hospital.

Visitors are currently banned from the Steeton hospital due to the coronavirus pandemic.

But Airedale NHS Foundation Trust has launched three services to enable relatives to deliver items to patients.

People can drop off a bag of essentials – such as clothes, nightwear, books and toiletries – at the site, for delivery by a volunteer to the patient’s bedside. Items can also be collected to be taken away for washing.

The service will run weekdays, between 10am and 4pm.

A timeslot must be arranged in advance and the bag – with the patient's name, date of birth and ward marked on it – taken to Building 15, Child Development Centre, where a volunteer will receive it.

Requests from households where there are any coronavirus symptoms can't be accepted, but if someone is unable to visit the hospital due to self-isolating, arrangements may be made for a volunteer to collect.

The trust has also set-up a free 'sending hugs' initiative, enabling relatives and friends to send a letter, photos or card to a patient.

There is even a facility, at, to design a card.

Items should then be emailed with the patient's details.

People without email can phone the trust.

And a 'care parcels' service has been launched so people who are self-isolating can send their loved one in hospital a package of basic items such as toiletries, a magazine, sweets and a pen and note cards.

Parcels will be delivered, in about 24 to 48 hours, with a personalised card.

The contact details for all the services are or 01535 294027.

Lynsey Nicholson, the trust''s patient experience lead, said: "We appreciate that this is a very difficult time for families not able to visit their loved ones in hospital.

"It’s not easy to be apart from someone you love when they’re unwell and we’re very grateful to people for their support to keep our hospital safe.

"We wanted to set-up a service that would help families maintain a sense of connection at this time. We hope that what we’ve put into place will help give them peace of mind that their loved one has their own things around them, to remind them of home and help them feel more comfortable."

Whilst there is no charge for the services, the trust says people are welcome to support the Care for Airedale campaign at