Mirfield’s mum is raising money for the hospital that saved her baby’s life

Clockwise from front, Chester Smithson, 11 months, Stanley Smithson, three, Guy Smithson and Amy Smithson.

Amy Smithson, from Mirfield, is hosting an event on Saturday May 7 at The Spangled Bull pub, Dewsbury, to raise money for the charity.

Amy’s son, Chester, was just six weeks old when he contracted three viruses – RSV-positive bronchiolitis, parainfluenza and rhinovirus – which put him in an induced coma.

Chester was admitted to the intensive care unit at Sheffield Children’s Hospital, where he received treatment for a month.

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Chester was admitted to the intensive care unit at Sheffield Children’s Hospital, where he received treatment for a month.

While Chester was in the intensive care unit, he suffered a collapsed lung and required a blood transfusion.

Amy said: ‘It was horrible but we were very lucky because at the end of May my husband Guy was due to have an MRI at Pinderfields Hospital but they called to say the scanner was broken and sent him asked if he could go June 26 instead – which we said was fine.

“Fast forward to June 25, the Friday before we went to the doctors because Chester wasn’t well and they sent us to A&E.

“A&E looked at him and said he had bronchiolitis and could be treated at home.

“Chester is now doing great and a really happy baby,” said Amy Smithson.

“We took him home and two hours later he wasn’t well, so I phoned an ambulance who took us to Pinderfields, who looked at him and said ‘It’s a bronchiolitis, go home’.

“But he wasn’t well overnight, and then on Saturday June 26, Guy had his appointment for his MRI at 8am in Pinderfields.

“I decided to go with Guy to the hospital so I could take Chester back to A&E while he had his CT scan.

“When we got there we pulled up outside A&E and Guy pulled out the car seat and passed it to me. That’s when I noticed Chester’s hood had fallen over his eyes.

“I took his hood off and he was dark blue, not breathing and had foam in his mouth.

“We came across A&E screaming ‘our baby isn’t breathing’.

“People immediately came and they had to put him to sleep and ventilate him.

“Someone was really looking down on us and broke the scanner that day because they knew we had to be there.

“If we had been two minutes later he would have gone into cardiac arrest and that would have been a whole different story.

“The odds of us being in Pinderfields on June 26 at 8am – we were supposed to be there 100 per cent.”

When Chester was released from the hospital, Amy knew she wanted to raise money for the Children’s Hospital Charity – to give something back – and she has been fundraising ever since.

Amy said: ‘In July 2021, while we were still in hospital, my dad, Steven Palmer, cycled coast to coast and we raised just over £3,000 .

“We also held a massive raffle which has raised £1,250 so far.

“Chester will be one year old on May 14 so we wanted to do a birthday party/big party which also turned into a charity event.

“The charity event is a festival theme and we have decided to call it ‘Chestfest’.

“All sorts of things will be happening during the day, like bouncy castles, face painting, balloon modeling, Ibiza classics will be playing and a live saxophonist.

“We want to raise this money for the children’s hospital charity to thank them for all they have done for us – they saved his life.

“Thank you to everyone who has donated so far, for all the support – we really appreciate it.”

So far over £5,000 has been raised.

The Children’s Hospital Charity supports specialist treatment by funding vital equipment, new facilities, a comfortable environment and vital research that is changing pediatric care for thousands of children around the world.

The charity event takes place on Saturday May 7 from 1pm at The Spangled Bull pub, Earlsheaton, Dewsbury, WF12 8BQ.

Fundraising donations can be made to:



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