NEW Year celebrations started early for two charities after they were handed thousands of pounds towards their good work, thanks to the Gannett Foundation Fund.

St Richard’s Hospice and Sight Concern Worcestershire have both managed to get a large slice of the funding from the owner of Newsquest Media Group, which publishes your Worcester News.

The hospice, in Wildwood Drive, Worcester, will use its £5,720 grant to buy syringe pumps.

June Patel, care director at St Richard’s, said: “We are extremely grateful for the donation.

“The syringe pumps are very patient-friendly, small and lightweight making them ideal for helping symptom control.

As an independent charity we rely on donations from our community such as this to enable us to continue offering care, comfort and compassion to our patients and families.”

St Richard’s Hospice announced earlier this year its ambitious expansion plans to help care for a third more patients.

Sight Concern Worcestershire, which operates out of The Bradbury Centre, Sansome Walk, Worcester, is planning to use its £7,200 grant toward the design, layout, printing and Braille copies of its relaunched newsletter.

The first edition of the Sightlines newsletter will be ready to be distributed in January.

Newsletters will be sent out every two months to blind and partially sighted people living in the county to keep them informed of their rights entitlements and support available to them as well as keep them engaged with the community.