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TCF news

Stories of grief, hope and resilience in feature documentary

Jane Harris (Trustee of The Compassionate Friends) and Jimmy Edmonds have recently completed production of a 75 minute feature documentary A LOVE THAT NEVER DIES. Following the death of their son Joshua in 2011, they set off on a road trip across the USA to find other bereaved parents with whom to share their story and find answers to some basic questions – why do we grieve, how do we grieve and why are we afraid of those who do grieve?

“Each of these families revealed stories of grief that confound social expectations about moving on and letting go” Jimmy

“We wanted to give a voice to grief that is not maudlin or morbid but full of hope and resilience” Jane

They now are delighted that they‘ve been invited to show the film at the The Compassionate Friends USA national conference in Orlando Florida at the end of July.

“TCF were very helpful as we planned our American trip so it’s important to us that we are able to screen the film to such a significant gathering.”

“We’ve been told that the film is beautiful and poetic and that will change the way the world sees grief. A big claim but we do hope that it contributes to a growing conversation about death, dying and bereavement in ways that will both move and inspire.”

The documentary will also be shown at this year's UK TCF National Gathering in Northamptonshire from 10-12 November in a special screening. It will be released to the general public early next year with a planned UK cinema tour followed by availability on the internet.

You can watch the trailer for A LOVE THAT NEVER DIES and find out more about Jane and Jimmy’s work here –


A LOVE THAT NEVER DIES is a Beyond Goodbye Media production for THE GOOD GRIEF PROJECT.

Royal mourners attend funeral of TCF President and Patron Countess Mountbatten

On Tuesday, 27th June the funeral of The Compassionate Friends' President and Patron, Countess Mountbatten of Burma, was held at St Paul's Church in Knightsbridge, London. The Countess wrote for us the story of the death of her son Nicky and here are a few of her thoughts and insights...

'"(losing a child) makes it very much easier to help other people because you share a common bond in your loss".

"I think the lesson I have learned from grief is principally to get your priorities right and to differentiate between the important and unimportant things in life in order not to waste time on the latter. The important aspects concern people and relationships-and not material things".

Death announced of Countess Mountbatten, passionate supporter of The Compassionate Friends

Countess Mountbatten of Burma

It is with deep sadness that we have learnt of the recent death, at age 93, of Countess Mountbatten of Burma, President of The Compassionate Friends in the UK. Countess Mountbatten was a passionate and loyal supporter of our charity. We will miss her enormously, and warmly thank her for her compassion and care for bereaved parents and their families over the many years she has been a Patron and President of our charity.

The Countess lost her fourteen year old son, Nicholas, in a terrorist attack in 1979. Her father, her mother-in-law and fifteen year old family friend Paul Maxwell were also killed in the attack. She, her husband, and their son Timothy Knatchbull (who is a Patron of The Compassionate Friends representing bereaved siblings) were injured but survived the attack. For more than 30 years she used her experience of the loss of her son to help other bereaved parents, through her support of The Compassionate Friends.

Our Chair of Trustees, Maria Ahern, commented "I didn't have the honour to meet the Countess, but I have spoken to others in our organisation who did and they spoke warmly of her compassion and her dedication to helping the bereaved. She was by all accounts, an inspiring lady and she will be missed by our organisation. Thank you Countess for all the help that you gave us."

The family have asked for donations in memory of the Countess to be made to The Compassionate Friends. Make a donation.

Our thoughts at The Compassionate Friends are with the family and friends of the Countess.

Charity place available in 2018 London Marathon

We are delighted to that The Compassionate Friends has secured a place in the 2018 LONDON MARATHON through the charities ballot. It is wonderful news for us and all the bereaved parents and their families to whom we try to offer friendship, support and hope after the death of a son or daughter, brother or sister.

If you, or someone you know, would like to run for us in this iconic event on 22 April 2018 please do contact our Fundraiser, Stephen at stephen@tcf.org.uk or 0345 120 3785 (Monday-Friday 9.30 am - 4.30 pm).


"Wonderful memories of a beautiful weekend filled with warmth, laughter and hope".

Our Gathering of bereaved parents, siblings and grandparents held in Perth, in beautiful Scotland, was held from 12-14 May. Parents from Scotland, England, Northern Ireland, South Africa and Australia came to the event, and many spent the first evening at a social drop in group to get to know each other and there was also a supportive meeting for first-timers attending the weekend - to help new parents get orientated and make the most of the 2 days together.

During our weekend together we heard a moving talk by Stewart Wilson, CEO of Cruse Bereavement Care Scotland. A bereaved father himself, he spoke about all his family and particularly his eldest daughter Anna who was born with a rare genetic disorder - 'crie de chat' syndrome - and sadly died when she a few days from her 17th birthday. Stewart's incredible honesty about family life with Anna and inspiring account of her life, death and the impact her short life has had on both him and his family was both heart-rending and inspiring to hear.

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Each year thousands of parents suffer the loss of a son or a daughter. Please help us to support families in their time of greatest need.

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