Parents of premature baby to thank West Suffolk Hospital through auction and race night

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A race night and raffle of Ipswich Town related goodies will be held as parents thank the hospital that cared for their prematurely born son.

George Gooderham weighed just 4.4lbs when he was born six weeks early in February last year.

He spent two and a half weeks in the neonatal unit building up his weight and strength before returning home.

Now his grateful parents Dave and Sarah Gooderham, both 33, have decided to raise money for the hospital to show their appreciation.

It will start with a charity auction with lots including an executive box at Portman Road for Ipswich Town’s game against Leeds United on March 30, a signed pair of Sunderland and former ITFC player Connor Wickham’s boots and gloves.

There are also boots signed by goalkeeper Scott Loach, ITFC captain Carlos Edwards signed boots, ITFC players Luke Chambers and Guirane N’Daw have donated signed photographs and David Sheepshanks has pledged a signed England shirt.

Further lots will be added during the next few days, including signed golf merchandise from two-time US Open champion Retief Goosen and an exclusive spa treatment. Former British number one tennis star Elena Baltacha, Olympic bronze medalist Anthony Ogogo and ex-ITFC skipper Matt Holland have also pledged items.

The auction will come to a close on March 2, to coincide with a race night and raffle the Gooderhams are holding at the Red Lion in Steeple Bumpstead, near Haverhill.

Dave, who is communications manager for the Ormiston Children and Families Trust, said: “We have been overwhelmed by the support we have already received for the race night and auction.

“The donations of items for auction are all fantastic but we have also been well-supported by the local community.”

The money raised will be put towards a new bereavement room at the hospital called the Jasmine Suite.

It will be Located between the labour suite, operating theatres andv neonatal unit, and will provide a calm and comfortable space where families will be able

to receive psychological and practical support following the loss of a baby.

The room will include a sitting area and en en-suite bedroom, where women who have had amiscarriage or medical termination, or whose baby are stillborn, can deliver without having the distress of transferring to the labour suite.

“We were so grateful for the support and care we received when George was born and wanted to do something to thank the hospital,” said Sarah, who is student support coach for Essential Nails.

“George is now doing really well and is a very happy, healthy baby.

“We are really pleased to be able to help raise money towards the Jasmine Suite, which will provide a calm, relaxing environment where parents who sadly don’t have

such a good outcome can receive special help and support.”

Patricia Davis, head of midwifery and general manager at West Suffolk, said: “We are very grateful to Dave and Sarah for raising funds for this important facility

which will help other parents who sadly lose their babies.

“The Jasmine Suite will be specially designed to be as homely and comfortable as possible so that bereaved

families can receive high quality support in a calm and relaxed environment.”

The race night takes place on March 2 at 7.30pm – everyone is welcome.

For more information about the items available for auction, please follow @davegoods on Twitter, email or read

Dave’s blog at

Anyone interested in raising funds for the bereavement suite should contact Claire Webb on 01284 712952.