Compton Hall was built in 1845 for a local hardware merchant Thomas Elwell. It is a grade II listed building with decorative wrought iron gates, a lodge, and a stable block.
On the death of his father in 1890 Laurence Hodson inherited Compton Hall. Laurence was a great patron of the Arts and Crafts movement and had an important collection of artworks and furniture. He employed William Morris to decorate the interior of Compton Hall, which retains many of its original features today. Morris designed his last wallpaper in 1896 for Compton Hall which is called Compton, a modern scaled-down version still retails today.
During the Second World War, Compton Hall housed evacuees. In 1946 it was bought by the Wolverhampton and Midlands Counties Eye Infirmary and was used as a nurses’ home for the next thirty years.
Councillor Stephen Morton with a group of supporters petitioned for Compton Hall to be used as a care facility for patients with terminal illnesses. With the help of the National Society for Cancer Relief, the Regional Health Authority and Wolverhampton Rotary sufficient funds were raised to construct and fit out new buildings and convert the Hall. The hospice doors were opened on 1 February 1982 to the first six patients. Within two months all sixteen beds were full.
On 9 November 1982 HRH the Duchess of Kent visited Compton Hall to perform the official opening.
Following a public appeal, the ward was extended to provide additional beds and a day centre was built. This new wing was named ‘The Norman Dixon Wing’ in honour of one of the founders of the hospice. It was officially opened on 26 April 1989 by HRH the Duchess of Kent.
A special appeal plus a room sponsorship scheme enabled Compton Hall’s Inpatient Unit to undergo significant refurbishment, turning the then 22-bed facility into an 18 private bedroom ward, each with an ensuite. The ward was decanted to the nearby private hospital for the duration of the works. The extensive upgrade ensured privacy and dignity for patients in a modern and energy efficient building.
In November 2016 it was announced that the charity would be funding the development of an extensive buildings project at Compton Hall to enhance the services offered to families living with the effects of life limiting illnesses in Wolverhampton and the surrounding areas. The project would see the development of a large purpose-built Care Coordination Centre part funded by a generous donation from the former 5/344 Transport and General Workers Sick and Distress Fund.
2018 saw a large patient and public consultation exercise which demonstrated that the word ‘hospice’ sometimes instilled fear and uncertainty with many people associating the term with death. To remove this stigma and to assist in redefining end of life care the charity changed its name to Compton Care
Covid-19 hits and Compton Care steps up to support local health services by opening extra beds and supporting thousands more people in the local community. Technology is utilised widely, and staff and volunteers go the extra mile. Retail and fundraising services are closed for large periods of time. Compton receives, in recognition of its work, government financial support.
The Care Coordination Centre is opened with a low-key socially distanced ceremony under COVID restrictions.
Compton celebrates 40 years of providing specialist palliative and end of life care for local people and their families living with the effects of life limiting illnesses. The Board gratefully acknowledges the magnificent support the charity has received from so many people, organisations and authorities during the last 40 years.
It is pleasing to note that 40 years on Compton Care still had three members who had been involved from its very early days; Mr D Berriman, Mr J Hobbs, and Mr M Domoney, without whose foresight and energy, Compton would not exist.
Compton Care launched its Virtual Ward in April 2023 which aims to keep people in their own home receiving hospital level care.
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