SIGN UP for our newsletter ✉️ :

Get the latest stories delivered straight to you

Children in Need: DIY SOS hospice project gets under way

Nick Knowles on site
Presenter Nick Knowles said it was "amazing" that so many people had volunteered to help

Building work has begun on an extension to a Derbyshire hospice, as part of the BBC's DIY SOS and Children in Need.

The new children's wing at Treetops Hospice in Risley, Derbyshire, will provide care and support to bereaved children.

The show hopes to complete the project in just 10 days using professionals volunteering their time.

On Monday presenter Nick Knowles joined hospice staff and the build team to officially start the clock.

Volunteers on site
Managers said the hardest part was co-ordinating all the jobs and people

Planning permission was granted just days ago, with Erewash Borough Council bringing forward its September planning meeting so the green light for the Derby Road project could be granted in time.

For safety reasons some ground works have already got started but Monday was the first day with the tradespeople on site.

About 130 businesses have come forward to help in the project.

Project manager, Derby-based builder Ian Hodgkinson, said: "The first morning is usually intense.

"These guys know what they are doing, we need to make sure they have what they need as one missing bit of plasterboard can hold the whole thing up."

Skilled workforce

Mr Knowles said: "It is always amazing to me that people in the toughest of times will still come out, because they want to help people who are in an even tougher situation.

"What we are building is so important for the kids in Derbyshire, it is so good to see people turning out."

He admitted the nervousness at the start of a build never goes away.

"There is so much that is daunting. You are having to problem solve, you have to be mobile and quick-thinking," he said.

"But look around the site, these are amazing people - you might not want to make a calendar out of them - but they have amazing skills who will make this happen, and we always rely on that."

Follow BBC East Midlands on Facebook, on Twitter, or on Instagram. Send your story ideas to