Barnstaple dad runs for baby unit

Local man takes up running for the first time to help the unit that helped his daughter.

A Barnstaple man has taken up running for the first time in his life to help raise money for a charity close to his heart.

Almost a year ago, Richard Parker’s daughter Hope was born three months prematurely and was looked after at the Special care Baby Unit in North Devon District Hospital, as well as in Plymouth and Exeter.

Richard and his wife Judy have already raised �1,500 for POPSI, the unit’s support group charity, but wanted to do more and so three months ago he decided to enter the great west Run and pulled running shoes for the first time ever.

A strict training regime followed and so yesterday (Sunday) the Ilfracombe Golf Club head green keeper joined a group of eight, including his and Judy’s brothers, to take part in the annual Exeter event.


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Hope weighed just one kilo (two pounds, three and a quarter ounces) when she was born on May 24 last year. She had to be transferred to Plymouth and then to Exeter, before returning to Barnstaple, spending a total of 107 days in hospital.

Her parents would like to thank all the staff at Ilfracombe Golf Club plus Judy’s work colleagues at Boots Barnstaple for all their support and sponsorship.

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The money they are raising is to buy a brain scanner for the special care baby unit at Barnstaple.

Anyone who would like to donate can do so via www.popsi.org.uk

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