A big donation from an anonymous benefactor has allowed Princess Alice Hospice to start £1m improvement works. 

The donation has been added to the £482,639 grant handed out by the Department of Health earlier this year and grants from trusts and foundations.

The project will see the Esher hospice’s reception, coffee and dining areas extended, redesigned and refurbished to create a more open and welcoming area.

After the refurbishments, the area will be used for group activities, private meetings and it will create a space for families to enjoy a meal together.

A new treatment room will also be created on the ground floor to allow patient and careers to receive therapies in a non-clinical environment and the current children’s area will be refurbished.

Nicki Shaw, chief executive of Princess Alice Hospice, said: “The reception project puts the needs of our patients and their loved ones at the forefront, making sure that their experience of the hospice is a positive one.

“Whether it is a patient who can receive therapeutic care in a more relaxing and comfortable setting, or a patient’s loved one who needs a quiet moment to privately come to terms with upsetting news, we have worked hard to make sure that this project can benefit the experience and quality of life of all those affected.”

Princess Alice Hospice was one of 176 hospices from across the country to benefit from government funding to improve care environments and settings.

The project will begin on Monday, October 7, and is expected to take six months, finishing in March 2014.