Our History

St Peter's Hospice has been serving the community across the wider Bristol area since 1978.

The concept of hospice care was developed in the late 1960s by Dame Cicely Saunders. In 1969, a working party was formed to look at the feasibility of having a hospice in Bristol. The group included medical consultants, GPs, a surgeon, a solicitor, nurses and various others. 

When the great Dame Cicely came to Bristol to speak at a public meetings, enthusiasm for the project increased. Fundraising for a Bristol hospice began in earnest in 1977. 

Our Name 

The Hospice was named after St Peter's Hospital that had once stood in the Castle Park area of the city until it was destroyed during the Blitz in 1940.

1978: Public meeting held - 'Why a Hospice?'

1978: Olive Martel was the first community nurse appointed, with four on the team by the end of the year

1980: St Peter's Lodge took in its first patient, with beds for a further six patients

1981: First shop opened on Wells Road in Knowle

1986: Official opening of new building at Knowle

1988: Education centre opened

1990: 600 patients treated per year

1992: Fundraising office was set up by Mrs Pat Davis

1995: Hospice at Home service starts

1998: 20 shops across Bristol

1998: New purpose-built hospice at Brentry opened by John Pool MBE

1999: First occupational therapist appointed

2002: Appointment of additional community nurse specialists

2004: 25th Anniversary marked by a visit from HRH The Earl of Wessex

2011: Department of Health grant awarded and used to create new reception, coffee shop and ambulance entrance

2012: 2,675 patients treated per year

2013: Department of Health grant awarded for the building of the Garden Rooms

2016: Room to Care Appeal launched by actress Caroline Quentin to fund a new Hospice building fit for the 21st century. Major support secured from the John James Foundation

2017: Public fundraising appeal launched and building work starts

2018: New Hospice building complete, with 15 individual inpatient rooms. Actress Caroline Quentin announces the success of the appeal. Patients move in

2019: HRH The Duke of Kent officially opens the new Inpatient Unit 

2019: 50 shops open across the Bristol area

2020: The Hospice responds rapidly to the COVID-19 pandemic to continue caring for patients and families across the Bristol area 

2021: 40th Anniversary of our charity shops 

2022: Day services delivered in the community at The Park Centre in Knowle

2024: Our first superstore opens on the Clifton Triangle

Technical update

Due to global IT issues we are currently unable to access our electronic patient record system,  this issue is also affecting GP surgeries and district nurses. We are continuing to operate our services, using our business continuity plans.  As always, patient care and safety remain our absolute priority. We are actively monitoring and managing the situation and will provide updates here when we have them.