Terminally ill woman reunited with horse at Aylesbury hospice

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Hayley Golding with a horse outside a hospice in AylesburyImage source, All People Photography
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Passion, the two-year-old horse, came to visit her owner Hayley Golding at Florence Nightingale Hospice Charity, in Aylesbury

A woman who is receiving end of life care has been reunited with her beloved horse outside a hospice.

Hayley Golding, 50, is being cared for at Florence Nightingale Hospice Charity, in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire.

The "beautiful moment" meant she could kiss, stroke, pet and be nuzzled by Passion, her two-year-old horse, from her bed, the hospice said.

Ms Golding said it was an "amazing" experience and she did not believe it would be possible.

Image source, All People Photography
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Hayley's parents, Pam and Ken, were able to join in the special moment

"The whole day was awesome, to see Passion walking toward me was unbelievable," she added.

"I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone involved who made this happen, I didn't believe it would be possible."

Her family said: "From the moment the idea was suggested we didn't actually believe it was possible, however it did happen.

"To see the look on Hayley's face when she saw Passion was wonderful."

Image source, All People Photography
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Photographer and chaplain, Pete Griffith, said "everyone there was moved by the connection Hayley has with her horse and it certainly lifted everyone's day"

The hospice, in the grounds of Stoke Mandeville Hospital and run by Buckinghamshire NHS Healthcare Trust, is partly funded by Florence Nightingale Hospice Charity.

It said it was a "beautiful moment which encapsulates the personal, compassionate nature of hospice care".

It shows how care can be "tailored to the needs of each patient and their family", it added.

Image source, All People Photography
Image caption,
Healthcare assistant, Lynn Lawrence, smiled as she saw how happy Hayley was

Pete Griffith, the trust's chaplain, who took the photos, said: "It was great to be able to support Hayley and the family in capturing such a special moment.

"It shows what good, holistic spiritual care for our patients looks like and the hospice went above and beyond to ensure Hayley's reunion with Passion would be a special moment."

Liz Monaghan, matron for palliative and end of life care, said many staff members were left in tears.

"There was something so touching about the tenderness shown by such a large and beautiful animal towards Hayley - it really did feel like Passion was saying goodbye," she said.

She added that she felt "privileged" to have witnessed it.

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