Man to run 14 hours for unit that saved his premature baby’s life

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A family have been so touched by the care given to their premature baby that her father will run for 14 hours to raise funds for the hospital she stayed at.

Holly, the daughter of Chris and Jo Hanson, of Exhall, in Warwickshire, was born three months early last September, and she had to stay in Kettering General Hospital’s special care baby unit because it was the nearest available bed.

Despite the family’s initial fears over a 70-mile commute, they were given use of a special bedsit to stay by their daughter’s side.

And because of the good care the hospital’s staff gave to the family, dad Chris, 40, has decided to run non-stop from Exhall to the unit at Kettering Hospital in Rothwell Road, to raise funds for it.

He said: “When we heard we were going all the way to Kettering we were gobsmacked because it’s so far away, but me and my wife had such fond memories, they were amazing.

“They saved our child’s life on several occasions.

“When we were told she would have to stay in there for four months we found ourselves somewhat bewildered and terribly worried for Holly.

“What we didn’t expect was the SCBU accommodating us within the unit so we could be close to Holly.”

While Holly was ill in the unit Chris, who works as a detective inspector for Warwickshire Police, had to commute every day to work.

He only returned to his Exhall home once a week to wash clothes, and when he was not working he would be with his wife at his baby’s side.

He added: “She had lots of problems, including bleeding on her brain, bleeding in her lungs and a hole in her heart and needed a blood transfusion.

“The thought of leaving her overnight was unbearable, but they gave us a family suite so we could stay by her side which I don’t think they have to do.

“Obviously the medical side of things was paramount, but the care they gave us was second to none, the nurses were so caring and compassionate.”

Mr Hanson intends to do the run on Sunday, September 16 – the day Holly was born – and will run for between 12 to 14 hours. He will get to Kettering via Stratford-Upon-Avon, Daventry, and Northampton.

Mr Hanson said he was taking part in a training programme to get himself fit for the big day.

So far he has raised £1,600 but hopes the final total will be closer to £10,000. To donate, visit