CHRISTMAS has come early for Dr Kershaw's Hospice as their £2.1m new in-patient unit got the blessing from planners.

The hospice, based in Turf Lane, Royton, was given formal planning permission for their ambitious bid to turn its 12-bed in-patient unit into individual en-suite rooms which will all have views of the newly-landscaped garden.

The design image of how the new wing will look has also been revealed.

Dr Paul Cook, hospice board member new-build lead, said: “We are delighted that planning permission has come through.

“We are looking at the conditions which include building additional car parking spaces before we bring in the temporary in-patient unit and we will soon be completing the tendering process with our managing architects Nichol Thomas and hope construction will commence around March.

“We have been very grateful to all the local residents and local politicians for their help in making this process as smooth as possible.

“We look forward to upgrading the quality of our surroundings and to continue to offer compassionate and dignified care for our patients and those dear to them.”