A former prime minister was back on his old stomping ground today to open a newly refurbished centre at St Raphael's Hospice.

Sir John Major, Conservative prime minister between 1990 and 1997, officially opened in the new Jubilee wing in North Cheam for people who receive day care.

Speaking prior to his speech, Sir Major backed the Sutton Guardian's give us a quid campaign, to raise money for the hospice, saying it "sounded wonderful".

He said: "The hospice relies on the kind donations of the public every year. It needs to raise £3 million every year to offer the services it does. I will certainly back a campaign which helps."

Sir Major praised the work of the hospice's 600 volunteers who daily undertook "the noblest of human endeavours" to care for the sick.

He said: "The people who volunteer here ask for nothing, and give a great deal. It's a triumph of the human spirit that people do this with an open heart."

Sir Major spoke about his own experience with hospices, telling the audience how his brother spent his final days in one, which he said helped he and his family a great deal.

The former Cheam Common Primary School pupil was in good humour as he met nurses and patients and went for a tour of the hospice.

He wittily quipped to a round of laughter: "Just to show this is a state of the art facility, it has two pins which I will take out to reveal the plaque."

Refurbishment of the New Jubilee Centre has cost in the region of £150k to complete, and it is designed to make the service more flexible and available to all patients, as well as introducing new services.

Services include massage, reflexology and aromatherapy and arts and crafts. Once a month, on a Friday, patients can access free advice from a local solicitor, Citizen's Advice Bureau, social worker, occupational therapist, physiotherapist and clinical nurse specialist.