Mum’s appeal for daughter’s first birthday

Lee and Olwyn Thornley will celebrate their daughter Robyns birthday by raising money for the hospital unit
Lee and Olwyn Thornley will celebrate their daughter Robyns birthday by raising money for the hospital unit

A businesswoman will celebrate her daughter’s first birthday by raising money for the hospital where she was cared for.

Olwyn Thornley suffered several miscarriages before her daughter Robyn was born on November 18.

The unit was absolutely amazing and without them, we know that our daughter simply would not be here.

Olwyn Thornley

A scan at 36 weeks showed she had a heart problem so labour was induced at Royal Bolton Hospital.

Within hours, Robyn’s health deteriorated and she was taken to the neonatal intensive care unit.

She had severe jaundice, could not maintain her body temperature and had heart problems.

Mrs Thornley, of Denbigh Grove, Atherton, said: “We were told that she was in a critical condition and the next 72 hours were crucial for her.

“The doctors and nurses in the neonatal unit were absolutely amazing and spent time with us explaining everything that was happening with our daughter.

“She seemed to make good progress until the Sunday evening when she suddenly stopped breathing. There were concerns she would not make it through the night.”

Baby Robyn did pull through and despite stopping breathing again the next day, she then started to improve.

She made good progress and was allowed to go home, with her parents given life support training and advice on her medication.

The heart medication was withdrawn after eight weeks and Robyn has come on in leaps and bounds.

Mrs Thornley, 39, said: “The unit was absolutely amazing and without them, we know that our daughter simply would not be here.

“When you go into hospital to have a baby it is an exciting time and you imagine scenes of what it will be like when your baby is born, being a family and the joy that comes with all those thoughts. You do not ever imagine for a minute that your baby may not be coming home with you.”

To show her gratitude, Mrs Thornley is holding a raffle to raise money for the neonatal intensive care unit as Robyn approaches her first birthday.

She runs central heating business Eco Boilers Northwest Limited in Atherton and the first prize in the raffle is a boiler supplied and installed for the winner.

Neighbouring businesses at Victoria Mill have also donated prizes.

Mrs Thornley said: “The unit is heavily reliant on donations and contributions from fund-raising and both myself and my husband Lee feel passionately about trying to do what we can to help the unit.”

Former Wigan and Great Britain rugby league star Martin Gleeson will draw the raffle at 2pm on Saturday, November 19 at Victoria Mill.

Tickets cost £5 and are on sale from Eco Boilers Northwest Limited, Royal Bolton Hospital and Plumb Centre in Leigh.

Before the draw, £10 will be donated for every boiler serviced and customers entered into the draw, while the other businesses involved also have offers.