‘A Happy Hartford Christmas’ was held at housebuilder Redrow’s luxury development near Northwich on Thursday 8 December.
The evening supported our work and thanks to Redrow’s generosity Chris Hughes, our North West Support Officer (centre) was recently able to collect a cheque for £2,626 from Redrow area sales manager Anna Evans-Kerr and Redrow Homes North West sales director Jason Newton.
Jason said: “Meningitis Now was chosen as one of our sales consultants has a son who had the condition when he was just a baby.”
Amy Houlihan’s son Ashton was just 11 months old when he was struck down with meningitis. Quick thinking and prompt help by medics meant Ashton made a full recovery – but Amy and husband Paul, 39, have never forgotten the support we offered in helping them cope with the aftermath of such a traumatic event.
Amy, 33, a consultant at Weaver Park, also in Hartford, said: “Ashton’s illness progressed so quickly from him being a little off his milk to having a soaring temperature which I couldn’t bring down. I decided to take him to the walk-in centre at my GP’s surgery and by the time I had made the five-minute journey from home Ashton had a rash on his face which began to spread.”
Medics at the centre gave the tiny baby an antibiotic before rushing him to hospital.
“Ashton was in hospital for a week and had to have the antibiotics administered at home for 10 days after that. It was only due to prompt action that Ashton made a full recovery and has suffered no after effects. Meningitis comes on so quickly and other children are not so lucky. Some don’t survive and others need lifesaving and life-changing surgery.”
Amy, whose son Ashton is now seven, added: “It was afterwards when I felt guilty and worried I could have done more that I contacted Meningitis Now. They reassured me that there was nothing more I could have done. They offered counselling and just helped us through. That’s why Paul and I do what we can to raise money so Meningitis Now can do its fabulous work in supporting people like us and raising awareness for this terrible illness.”
All ages were catered for at the event at Hartford Grange, with mince pies aplenty and mulled wine for the adults. Children were able to have their faces painted as well as meet Santa and Redrow’s mascots Buster and Buddy.
Businesses, suppliers and tradesmen all generously donated prizes for the charity raffle.
Chris Hughes added: “It was amazing to see such a fantastic turnout at the event and we’re incredibly grateful that Redrow has supported us. Events like this are invaluable in helping to raise much-needed funds so we can carry on offering support to parents and making as many people as possible aware of this illness.”