Bear-Patrol Bring & Buy Community Sale raises £800 for The Sussex Beacon

On Saturday 19 September Bear-Patrol held their annual Community Bring & Buy Sale at The Queens Arms in support of The Sussex Beacon. After a year of collecting donations from the community they were able to fill the pub with a treasure trove of items for the sale.

Outside the Queen's Arms credit SB

It was a fantastic day all round with lots of people attending creating an extremely sociable atmosphere, full of conversations and laughter; this meant that they managed to raise £800 for The Sussex Beacon.

All of the stock that was unsold has been donated to The Sussex Beacon community shop for them to sell on and raise further funding for the charity.

Unpacking stock 2 credit SB

Bear-Patrol and The Sussex Beacon would like to say a massive thank you to Barry Nelson & Andy Dunton from The Queens Arms for allowing them to use the pub, and to everyone that volunteered, supported, donated items, made cakes, made a purchase & donated funds on the day. Bear-Patrol look forward to collecting items for next years sale.

Unpacking stock 3 credit SB

For further information & photos from the sale there is a story posted on Gscene; in the meantime, if you have any items you would like to donate to next years sale please contact Bear-Patrol via email.

Bear-Patrol receive The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service

LGBT community fundraising and social networking group Bear-Patrol, were honoured this Saturday with the highest award that is given out in the United Kingdom to voluntary groups, The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.

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Founded in May 2008 by Danny Dwyer, Bear-Patrol has raised tens of thousands of pounds for The Sussex Beacon alone. From the start of 2011 to the end of 2014 they raised £88,847.26 for causes in Brighton including: The Sussex Beacon, The Rainbow Fund, Macmillan Cancer Research, and Brighton Pride.

Bearpatrol banner

Over the years Bear-Patrol has organised many fundraising events, including: entering a team every year into the Vitality Brighton Half Marathon, which is organised by The Sussex Beacon; their annual Hibernation Luncheon, complete with a four-course lunch, live cabaret, a charity raffle and auction; a yearly bring and buy sale, which this year will be held at The Queens Arms on Saturday the 19th of September; and group skydives.

The money raised by Bear-Patrol has gone towards many different projects within The Sussex Beacon centre, including: replacing our ancient fridge and freezer, enabling our kitchen staff to provide high quality nutritious food for our inpatients; replacing out garden pond’s liner and rescuing the central feature of our beautiful, relaxing garden; supporting the refurbishment of our inpatient unit by helping us to replace fire doors and upgrade corridor flooring and redecoration; and the upcoming refurbishment of our reception area, which will create a more welcoming, inviting space with an improved work area for our reception volunteers.


The Sussex Beacon would like to congratulate Bear-Patrol on their well-deserved award, and thank them once again for all of the hard work that they have put in over the years, raising for us the funds that we need to provide our vital services to the community. We wish Bear-Patrol all the best in the future, and hope that they will continue to keep up the brilliant work that they have undertaken in the past, both in building links within the LGBT community, and in fundraising for charitable causes.

The Sussex Beacon awarded £4,350 at The Rainbow Fund Awards

Certificate Credit Sussex Beacon

We applied for funds to buy essential equipment for the treatment room in our inpatient unit. The treatment room is where the medicine and specialist equipment that patients will need during their stay at The Sussex Beacon is stored.

The room is used on a daily basis by nurses to do activities such as preparing a trolley for doing a patient’s dressing or preparing controlled drugs to administer to patients. It also acts as a central storage area for emergency equipment.

The equipment that we will be able to purchase with this grant money will help to improve patient care in three key areas:

1. It will allow us to fully access patients’ mobility and independence and utilize the skills and knowledge of our occupational therapy and physiotherapy services.

2. It will enhance the standard of care provided to our patients by giving nurses the equipment they need to administer specialist procedures such as IV medications and fluids. This will allow patients to return to independent living. It will also provide patients with the care and comfort they deserve during end of life care.

3. Finally, the equipment will make sure that we have a treatment room that is fit for purpose, meets clinical standards and allows for the delivery of safe care in a modern environment.

The current treatment room is functional but not fit for purpose. Some of the equipment has broken over time and there has not been the funding to replace it. Other items have not been needed until now, for example, drip stands so that nurses can administer IV medications and fluids.

Patients who are being admitted to The Sussex Beacon have very different needs to when the centre first opened. Their treatment is becoming increasingly complex and many are highly dependent. This is mainly due to the progression of their HIV, the impact of ageing and changes in our patients’ health and social status.

In thanks for this grant, a plaque will be put on the door of the treatment room and it will be named ‘The Rainbow Fund Treatment Room’. Receiving the award on the night were an assortment of volunteers and staff from The Sussex Beacon, including Chief Executive, Simon Dowe, and newly appointed Lead Nurse, Jason Warriner.

Recipients Credit Sussex Beacon

The Sussex Beacon would like to say a very big thank you to all those at The Rainbow Fund and Pride who made the awarding of these funds possible. This money is a vital part of the over £2 million that we need to raise every year in order to continue providing our much-needed services to the community.

Lorraine Chase and Robin Cousins meet staff and patients at our centre

Actress Lorraine Chase and sports personality Robin Cousins took a tour and met staff and patients at The Sussex Beacon centre on Monday 7 September. The pair have recently pledged their support of us by offering to host their upcoming ‘The Halloween Horror Show’ fundraising ball.


The tour included a look around our centre’s ten-bedded inpatient unit and day service facilities. Our charity, which supported over 866 people living with HIV last year, needs to raise over £2 million to keep our vital services running.

Co-host Robin Cousins said:_RF_8777

“The Sussex Beacon are a huge part of the Brighton and Hove landscape, and as a local I am very happy to co-host this years The Halloween Horror Show with the fabulous Lorraine Chase. The charity does incredible work in and around our community and annual events like this support and celebrate their continuing efforts”.

Hosting ‘The Halloween Horror Show’

Lorraine and Robin will be hosting ‘The Halloween Horror Show’ at the Grand Hotel, Brighton on Saturday 31 October 2015. They will narrate the show which will include live song and dance performances, with a cast from the Brighton Academy. Guests will enjoy a sparkling wine reception, three-course meal, silent auction, main auction and best-‘fancy’- dressed competition._RF_8774_1

Co-host Lorraine Chase said:

“l was chuffed to be asked to take part in The Halloween Horror Show for The Sussex Beacon. Co-hosting with the amazing Robin Cousins will be a treat indeed! I look forward to seeing you all there. We need your support”.

Simon Dowe, CEO at The Sussex Beacon, says:Simon Dowe

“We are delighted to host Lorraine and Robin’s visit today and even more delighted for them to offer to host our fundraising ball. This will be the second year of ‘The Halloween Horror Show’ and after last year’s success, we hope to raise a significant amount of money to support people living with HIV”.

City Cabs to sponsor the event

Joining Lorraine and Robin on their visit was Andy Cheeseman, Managing Director of City Cabs, who is sponsoring ‘The Halloween Horror Show’. Andy said:

“City Cabs is proud to be sponsoring The Halloween Horror Show to raise funds to support people living with HIV. The Sussex Beacon is an important charity for the community of Brighton and Hove and, as a local business, we feel it is important to support charities who support our local community.”

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Please note: There will be a small charge for online ticket sales.

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