Daredevils 'zip' to boost baby unit


Staff reporter (Chester First)

A TOTAL of 70 people of all ages braved the rain and mist to ‘fly’ on the longest and fastest zip wire in Europe.

The team took on Zip World in Snowdonia to raise money for the Countess of Chester’s Babygrow Appeal.

The campaign, backed by the Leader’s sister paper, the Chester Standard, aims to raise enough money to create a new neonatal unit at the hospital.

 The team behind the appeal recently celebrated hitting the £1 million mark.

Countess corporate and events fundraising manager Lesley Woodhead said: “I ‘zipped’ in March and it was scary but fantastic. 

“It was great to see all our Babygrow supporters arriving and looking scared when they saw the height of the zip and then seeing them again after it was all over, feeling so proud of what they had achieved.”

Many people took part, including parents of babies who have been cared for in the neonatal unit, and they were joined by Countess staff and volunteers.

Teams representing Sainsbury’s and Bluestones also took part. The ‘High Fliers’ team from Ellesmere Port enjoyed the experience so much members are already looking forward to taking to the skies a second time for the Babygrow Appeal.

Victoria and David Hughes, of Runcorn, zipped together to celebrate the 10th anniversary of their twins, Carys and Keeley, being born at 29 weeks in August 2004 and cared for in the unit.

They were delighted to be reunited with Suzanne Brierley, a nurse there who looked after the twins as babies. Suzanne ‘zipped’ with her 12 year-old-son, Greg. 

She said: “It was a brilliant day, if a little scary. It was well worth it for the money that has been raised. 

“I thought it was a great idea and a fantastic challenge. Thanks to Lesley for organising it all.”

Another ‘zipper’, Caroline Davies, said: “It was amazing. I would definitely recommend doing it.”

Deputy manager of the neonatal unit Yvonne Griffiths said: “We had a lovely day watching all the wonderful ‘zippers’.

“Thank you to everybody. All the staff really appreciate everything you are doing to help us get nearer to our £3m target. You are all brilliant.”

The event is expected to raise more than £7,000 for the Babygrow Appeal once all the outstanding sponsorship money is collected.

See full story in the Chester Leader

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