Princess Royal Hospital overwhelmed by appeal toys.

PUBLISHED: 11:23 23 December 2010

Luis Sanchez, Sian Spencer Little, Demi Kendall and Sister Tracy Bull at Princes Royal University Hospital

Luis Sanchez, Sian Spencer Little, Demi Kendall and Sister Tracy Bull at Princes Royal University Hospital


Our annual Times Toy Appeal has ensured hundreds of your gifts have been handed to children forced to spend the Christmas season in hospital.

Luis Sanchez and Demi Kendall

Despite heavy snow and even an outbreak of the highly contagious Norovirus at the Princess Royal University Hospital in Farnborough, our team managed to complete the handover to sick children in time for Christmas.

The appeal, now in its fourth year, has had support from celebrities including Peter Andre, Len Goodman, Melinda Messenger, comedian Bobby Davro and the hundreds of residents and businesses across Bromley.

During the festive hand over on Tuesday, children stuck on the Children’s Ward at the PRUH gathered in the play room as your donations were handed out.

Luis Sanchez, 8, from St Pauls Cray, was admitted to hospital with pneumonia. He said: “It is so nice that everybody has given us these toys, and for people to think of us in here.

“I am really looking forward to opening my presents on Christmas day now. Thank you to everyone that sent in the toys. It is so nice!”

His mother said the toys already on the ward had helped speed his recovery. She said: “Luis has been in for nine days with pneumonia and he has missed so much fun at school.

“It is so lovely that people care so much about the children in hospital over Christmas. People have bee so generous! Luis has missed the end of term but his teachers came in with a card from his class.

“The toys in the play centre and Sian (the play specialist) have really helped him get better. All of the staff have been amazing, they have been angels, and there is nothing more he could need.”

The cast of Aladdin, including Melinda Messenger and former EastEnder Don Gilet had been due to present the gifts to children at the Princess Royal last Friday, but because of the Norovirus outbreak, the hand over was cancelled at the last minute.

But after the hospital was given the all clear this week, our team of reporters visited the hospital on Tuesday to spread the Christmas cheer.

Claire Sinfield, 28, from Orpington, was with her daughter Miia, 6, who had been admitted to hospital with flu.She said: “This is such an amazing idea, it is very kind, and thank you to everyone who donated.

“It just makes the children in hospital very happy, and kids really love it. Miia is so appreciative of it. For the children in hospital over Christmas it can make their stay that bit more enjoyable.”

Nurses on the ward said some of the toys will be given out by Father Christmas to children on Christmas eve. Others will be used to stock the play room for the rest of the year and some will be given to the siblings of babies in the maternity unit.

Colin Knox, father of murdered Harry Potter actor Rob Knox, a former pupil at Bromley D&B Performing Arts contacted the Kentish Times to donate a £200 flat screen television and DVD player to Willow Ward at Darent Valley Hospital.

He said: ““We are delighted to contribute to this wonderful appeal, it is such a worthwhile cause. We support a variety of good things in the community and this is the perfect example of this.”

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