25th Oct, 2016

'Brilliant' Ben dives in to say thanks

Evesham Editorial 19th Dec, 2014 Updated: 20th Oct, 2016

A ‘MARVELLOUS’ Evesham youngster took the plunge and raised more than £1,000 for the Worcestershire Royal Hospital.

Nine-year-old Ben Chadwick made a splash and swam 50km to collect a staggering £1,210 to donate to the hospital’s neonatal unit which cares for premature, small or sick babies.

The kind-hearted youngster was himself cared for both at the Worcestershire Royal and Heartlands Hospital in Birmingham when he was born in 2005 with a lung condition.

But after five weeks of care, the nine-year-old has gone from strength to strength and completed his challenge over a six week period at various local swimming pools.

Ben said: “I am really grateful to everyone working in neonatal units. I wanted to do something different to say thank you to the people who looked after me when I was born.”

His 50km effort was completed in more than 2,000 lengths and matches the distance between the two hospitals.

Craig Burchell, fund-raiser for Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS trust charitable fund, said: “Ben is amazing, for someone so young to raise so much is absolutely brilliant.

“I am already lining him up for a London Marathon place when he turns ten!.

“Joking aside, he has done remarkably well and we are all so grateful for his support.”

Dr Andrew Gallagher, consultant paediatrician, added: “Ben is a marvellous individual.

“To take on a challenge like this at such a young age is a real testament to him. I don’t know many people that could swim 50km in three months let alone six weeks.

“We are all very grateful for his efforts.” he added.