Meet the latest Sue Ryder hospice volunteer – therapy pony Harry

Categories: Care.

Staff and volunteers from Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice in Peterborough had the pleasure of meeting their new team member yesterday (December 2023) – therapy pony Harry.  

The loveable Falabella miniature horse and his therapy volunteer handler, Summer Roberts, made a surprise entrance at the hospices’ annual volunteer Christmas party, which celebrates the dedication and commitment of both two and four legged volunteers who help the hospice to be there when it matters.

The 28-years-young Pets as Therapy pony will make regular visits to the hospice bringing joy, comfort and emotional support to patients and their families at the most difficult times of their lives.


Antonia Dowell, Volunteer Coordinator at Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice said how “surprised and delighted” volunteers and staff were to welcome the newest member of the team.

Summer added: “Harry is incredibly gentle and knows when he needs to give space and when he can get right up and close for a cuddle. He has an instinct to detect sadness and will be extra attentive, following people around and doing silly things like he almost wants to make you smile. Speaking from personal experience Harry makes you feel better in impossible times. We want to share that with other people and also let Harry do what he loves.”

Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice is currently looking to increase the numbers of volunteers to support our hospice and for fundraising volunteers to support their events and help raise vital funds for families needing their care. To find out more contact Volunteers Coordinator Antonia Dowell via email on or by calling 01733 225927.



About Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice 

At Sue Ryder, we can’t make life’s most difficult moments easy, but we can carry some of the load. For more than 70 years we have been a source of strength and support for anyone living with a life-limiting illness or grief. 

Dying and grief are universal experiences, but too many people face them alone. Here at Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice located in Peterborough we provide a safe and reassuring hand for the people of Peterborough, Stamford and parts of Lincolnshire to reach for. Our expert support is available from our specialist inpatient unit, offering both specialist and medically-light beds, hospice at home service, family support team, complementary therapy and palliative rehabilitation.  

From giving care and support for someone at the end of their life to helping someone manage their grief, we know there is no one size fits all when it comes to how we cope and the help we need. We campaign for everyone who is approaching the end of their life or grieving to have access to the right support, at the right time. And we seek to break down the barriers to talking about dying and grief – so we can all be better prepared and better equipped to be there for each other. 

We can make a positive difference during even the darkest of times. Whether in the last months, weeks or days of life, or living with grief, we help people live the best life they possibly can. We are there when it matters.

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