THE family of a little boy who was born prematurely has raised more than £1,500 for Arrowe Park Hospital to thank staff who cared for him. 

Jude Price spent the first seven weeks of his life on the Neonatal Unit with a collapsed lung and problems with breathing and feeding.

He is now a happy, healthy three-year-old, full of personality and mum Natalie couldn't be more proud of the progress he has made.

The family has spent a year fundraising for the hospital. Challenges included climbing Mount Snowdon and completing the Wirral Coastal Walk.

Natalie also organised numerous activities through her workplace, Hays Travel in Birkenhead.

Colleagues and customers supported her fundraising and when company Directors heard about her efforts, they offered to match the amount she'd raised, bringing the fundraising total to almost £1700!

Natalie said: "I had a scan 28 weeks into my pregnancy, which showed that Jude was not growing as he should be.

Wirral Globe:

Little Jude has come a long way since he was born prematurely at Wirral Women and Children’s Hospital

"I was monitored very closely until I reached a point where doctors thought it was safest for Jude to be born early.

"It was a very challenging time, as you presume that everything will go smoothly and you will take your baby home with you.

"The hardest part for me was that he needed urgent medical care as soon as he was born so I was unable to hold him.

"It was very difficult leaving hospital without our baby and not being able to hold him whenever we wanted to, however we knew that he was in the best place and was getting the best possible care from all of the doctors and nurses." 

Reflecting on their journey, Natalie continued: "As Jude has got a bit older, I have started thinking a lot more about the experience I had when he was born.

"The support provided to our whole family was amazing and I really wanted to give something back to say thank you for everything that the team did for us."

Managing Director, Don Bircham said: "This is, of course, a cause very close to Natalie's heart.

"She and the team at Hays Travel in Birkenhead have worked so hard fundraising (and had a lot of fun along the way)! It was my absolute pleasure to write a cheque to match the amount raised.”

Victoria Burrows, head of fundraising for Wirral University Teaching Hospital Trust said: "We'd like to say a huge thank you to the Price family and everyone at Hays Travel for their generosity, which will make a big difference!"

To find out more about fundraising for Wirral hospitals visit WUTH Charity’s website: