WATCHED by her supporters, Doris Dibble pulled down the shutters for the last time on the League of Friends' shop in the foyer of North Devon District Hospital. The League's hundreds of volunteers walked away on new year's eve from the services which have

WATCHED by her supporters, Doris Dibble pulled down the shutters for the last time on the League of Friends' shop in the foyer of North Devon District Hospital.The League's hundreds of volunteers walked away on new year's eve from the services which have raised £2.6 million for the hospital over the last 30 years.It left the hospital temporarily with no foyer tea bar or shop and the patients without the convenience of ward sweet and newspaper trolleys. These services have now been taken over for the time being by hospital caterer Sodexo. It follows a management decision to seek tenders for an improved cafe bar with bigger menu and longer opening hours in conjunction with plans for a new outpatient suite and redevelopment of the foyer.The League of Friends was given notice to leave the tea bar by May, but decided to go at the end of the year because it could not meet the management's increased requirements of the service.At the time chairwoman Doris Dibble said the management decision had made it impossible for the League and its 400-plus volunteers to carry on.But on New Year's Eve, as she was thanked for all the League had done by a constant stream of hospital staff, patients and visitors, she had little more to say."I want to go out with dignity," she told the Gazette. Ref: DT0201