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QVH snubs Saint Hill

Title: QVH snubs Saint Hill
Date: Friday, 17 June 1994
Publisher: East Grinstead Courier (UK)
Author: David Thompson
Main source: link (173 KiB)

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A SUMMER fete has sparked controversy between the Queen Victoria Hospital and the Church of Scientology.

Hospital chiefs are seething over advertisements and flyers handed out to promote the event at the cult's Saint Hill headquarters which say money raised would go to the world-famous burns unit.

But chairman of the hospital's trust, Jeffrey Park, told the Courier: "We would not accept the money."

The hospital, he said, was "extremely annoyed" and "appalled" by the advertisements.

Mr Park added: "We discussed the issue of this particular organisation and we decided that it was one we did not wish to be associated with.

"It does seem to have peculiar habits. We have to do the right thing and we have to be seen to do the right thing.

"We would be delighted to hear from any other organisation raising money for us but we like to know before the event so any conflict of interest can be averted."

Liz Dalrymple, fete organiser for the Church of Scientology, told the Courier: "Last year's fete was a tremendous success and the hospital sent a gracious thank you letter for the proceeds we raised for the hospital.

"I spoke to Lorraine Clifton, the Unit General Manager, two weeks ago on the phone to let her know we had chosen the hospital as one of our charities again this year. I told her about the various activities we had lined up and how much we value the work they do at the hospital.

"The advertising is almost identical to last year's and had there been any change of policy or hint of objection I would have expected Mrs Clifton to mention this."

Promotions for the fete on June 25 say it is also in aid of the Great Ormond Street Hospital and St John Ambulance.

Mrs Clifton was on leave this week.

EDITORS NOTE: On Wednesday afternoon, The Church of Scientology requested that their advert for the fete on page 4 of this issue of the Courier be amended to remove reference to the hospital.

• See letters, page 8.