An inspirational couple who suffered a stillbirth say their efforts to help ease future parents’ pain are a poignant tribute to their son.
Spencer Davis and Rachael Marsden, from Euxton, launched a ground-breaking campaign to sound-proof the delivery rooms at the Royal Preston Hospital following their traumatic experience earlier this year.
“It won’t bring Thomas back, but this is his legacy.”Spencer Davis
They joined forces with the Baby Beat Appeal charity, based in the Sharoe Green Maternity Unit, to set up the Little Ted’s Room initiative, named after baby Thomas Edward Davis.
This week, they returned to the hospital to officially unveil the first two sound-proofed delivery rooms, which will minimise noise transfer from neighbouring rooms and the cries of healthy newborn babies.
The mammoth fund-raising mission saw them collect the £25,000 needed to reach the first milestone of the ambitious project in time for Christmas.
Spencer, a paramedic, said: “It’s a very worthwhile cause and it will benefit other families in the future.
“It was the first time Rachael had been back to the hospital after Thomas’s birth, so it was mixed feelings really, but something positive has come out of such a tragedy, and it will make a difference to other people. It won’t bring Thomas back, but this is his legacy.”
The couple, who are also parents to Samuel, aged five, launched the campaign in July following the tragedy in March, supported by Baby Beat and the Evening Post.
After an ‘overwhelming’ response from the community, Spencer and Rachael, a nurse at Chorley Hospital, managed to raise £12,000 in the first few weeks, and a decision was taken to expand the appeal.
The aim now is to sound-proof all 12 of the delivery suites at Sharoe Green, at a total cost of £93,000.
And Karen Entwistle, the charity’s manager, has revealed that thanks to an unexpected boost for the campaign, work on the next two rooms will start in the new year.
She said: “We are enormously grateful to Spencer and Rachael for their overwhelming support. To raise £27,000 in seven months is truly phenomenal and testament to all their hard work, which enabled work to commence on the first two rooms.
“But just before work started, we received news that the many contractors scheduled to carry out the work had heard Spencer’s story and they wanted to give their support by offering their services completely free of charge, which included design, materials and labour for the first two rooms.
“So FWP, D&G Builders, Ameon, CRT Flooring and B&Q collectively carried out the refurbishment in support of this appeal, which is totally overwhelming.
“This means that after Christmas we can start work on the next two rooms almost immediately thanks to their generosity.”
She added: “We are also truly grateful to the Evening Post for their wonderful support of this campaign and helping us to raise its profile, sending the message out to so many people who have equally supported our mission.
“We now need a further £68,000 to continue the good work to complete all of the 12 rooms on the unit.”
- To donate, visit www.justgiving.com/littletedsroom.