New Life Appeal fundraiser is Gok Wan inspired

A MUM whose son was born more than two months early is staging a fundraiser inspired by fashion guru Gok Wan in aid of The Hunts Post’s New Life Appeal.

Thomas Peters spent nearly two months receiving round-the-clock care at Hinchingbrooke Special Care Baby Unit (SCBU). The youngster, now aged 18 months, was born 11 weeks premature.

He needed breathing support for two weeks, and had to be fed via a tube into his veins for six weeks.

It was only down to the instincts of the nursing team that he survived a potentially fatal infection. They sensed there was a problem when he was one week old, even though at the time the tests were all-clear.

Mum Sarah Thompson, 34, believes it is because of their care and attention, Thomas is alive and well today. As a means of saying thank you she has organised a fundraising frock exchange at Great Paxton School Hall on Friday, June 17.

Sarah, who lives in the village, said: “I did not see Thomas for 24 hours after he was born. He was attached to all different bits of equipment. The staff just kept bringing me pictures of him.

“They were amazing. To be honest, they saved his life through pure instinct. A week after he was born, he all of a sudden started going downhill. But nothing showed up on any of the medical tests.

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“The nurses said there was something wrong with him, and it turned out he was brewing a nasty infection. They knew, before even the doctors knew.”

Sarah, who also has a four-year-old son William, has been keen to give something back since Thomas left hospital on January 31 last year.

A fan of style guru Gok Wan, she came up with the idea of a frock exchange, after a similar event was held at her workplace - Arthur Rank Hospice in Cambridge.

Neighbours and friends have already donated a large amount of clothing, and Sarah is expecting to be inundated on the day. Any items left over half-an-hour into the exchange can be snapped up for �1.

The Hunts Post’s New Life Appeal raises funds for SCBU and the maternity unit at Hinchingbrooke. In April, a black and white ball raised �7,000 for the appeal.

Sarah said: “What we want are good quality items. As many things as you bring, you can take. And you do not have to bring a necklace and take a necklace, you can take what you like.

“I have got rails full of beautiful clothes, and where people haven’t given clothes they have given clothes hangers. It is impossible to thank everyone. All I can say is I have had a lot of support.”

INFORMATION: Doors open at 7.30pm for donations and viewing. The exchange starts at 8.15pm. Entry fee is �5. To donate clothes please leave them at 85 High Street, Great Paxton or contact Sarah on

n Mums Filomena Liuna Cox and Nikki Layhe Tatham are holding a ladies and children clothing sale on Saturday, June 25 at Eastfield Infant School in St Ives. The event will also be in aid of Hinchingbrooke SCBU. All donations of ladies and children’s clothing, shoes, accessories and clothes rails will be accepted. There will also be a cake sale on the day. The event will run from 2pm to 4pm.