HRH Sophie the Countess of Wessex visited Kingswood charity the Jessie May Trust this afternoon.
The charity provides hospice at home services to terminally ill children in South Gloucestershire, Bristol, Bath and North Somerset.
The smiling Countess attended a reception at the charity’s headquarters on the Kingswood Estate in Britannia Road where she met nurses, volunteers, trustees, supporters and families cared for by the charity.
The occasion marked what would have been the 21st birthday of Jessica May Purrington, who died in 1994 aged four and a half months after being born with the genetic condition Spinal Muscular Atrophy.
The charity was subsequently established by Jessica’s parents, Chris and Philippa, who wanted to support other families in caring for their terminally ill child at home.
It costs around £1m for the charity to provide this care yearly and as it is almost entirely dependent on public support.
Before coming to Kingswood the Countess visited Marshfield Bakery and the National Trust’s Dyrham Park.
And after leaving the Jessie May Trust by Range Rover, Sophie was taken round the corner to the John Cabot Academy in Woodside Road where a helicopter was waiting for her on the playing fields.
She had a chat to students and the principal Kate Willis before taking off.