You have done it once again – you wonderful people. Around 600 of you answered the called to put on your shoes and boots and take part in Manorlands’ first ever Starlight Hike. The result was an incredible £52,000 being raised to help maintain the Sue Ryder hospice at Oxenhope.

Despite the tough economic times, people are still prepared to dig as deep as they can to contribute to the needs of Manorlands. It seems more and more people’s lives are being affected by life-threatening illnesses and want to raise money to pay for care services.

The incredible aspect is that hospices and similar centres through the country have to rely on voluntary contributions for most of their income. In the case of Manorlands it costs more than £1.5 million to provide palliative care for more than 1,300 people a year.

Over the years there have been many calls for successive governments to play a part in helping these services. Earlier this year a major campaign began to raise awareness about the problem of irrecoverable VAT for charities providing health care services. All the hospices – like Manorlands – wanted was equality with the NHS which is able to recover VAT on certain non-business supplies that charities are not. What is for certain is that with current reform and other agendas more services are being provided by the charity sector.

Thankfully the charities are not holding their breath for a magic financial wand to be waved. Instead they are constantly looking forward and coming up with new ideas to hit the revenue targets. As the team at Manorlands says, there’s no time like the present to sign up for next year’s hike so they can make it even bigger and better.