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Festive lights display in aid of babies

PUBLISHED: 09:43 29 November 2008 | UPDATED: 12:25 03 July 2010

LIGHTS FANTASTIC: Tim Long with his family, Kirsty, Frankie, Kian (front left) and Charlie (front right) outside their Christmas lights- festooned house. They are looking for donations for the James Paget University Hospital neo-natal unit.

LIGHTS FANTASTIC: Tim Long with his family, Kirsty, Frankie, Kian (front left) and Charlie (front right) outside their Christmas lights- festooned house. They are looking for donations for the James Paget University Hospital neo-natal unit.

Dominic Bareham

A GORLESTON family will be hoping their Christmas lights display helps a hospital neo-natal unit have a brighter future.

Timothy and Kirsty Long have spent more than £500 on lighting up the front of their home in St Antony's Avenue, and they are hoping generous residents will donate to help the James Paget University Hospital continue their good work caring for premature babies.

A GORLESTON family will be hoping their Christmas lights display helps a hospital neo-natal unit have a brighter future.

Timothy and Kirsty Long have spent more than £500 on lighting up the front of their home in St Antony's Avenue, and they are hoping generous residents will donate to help the James Paget University Hospital continue their good work caring for premature babies.

Timothy, 27, and 24 year old Kirsty, know at first hand the work done by the unit's staff because their son Frankie had to be rushed to the hospital's special care baby unit to be treated after being born 11 weeks premature last December.

Sadly, Frankie's twin sister, died inside at around 20 weeks.

Frankie weighed only 2lb 15oz and was rushed into the neo-natal unit where he stayed until dioscharge on January 6 when he topped the scales at 5lb 10oz.

The extensive display features a “curly wurly” Christmas tree, a flashing tree, a snowman and a Santa figure climbing up a ladder.

Timothy said: “I don't care about the electric bill as long as I am raising money for a good cause. I decided to do it for the neo-natal unit because the staff there were so fantastic in helping Frankie.” Kirsty had thought she was only about 10 weeks pregnant when a routine scan revealed that she had been carrying twins for twice that long. Then came the devastating news that one of the twins would be dead within two weeks and she was offered a termination of both babies or tests on the healthy one which could bring on a miscarriage.

The couple opted to continue the pregnancy with close monitoring.

The unborn girl died soon after and Mrs Long faced an anxious few months fearing for Frankie.

When the Mercury spoke to her just weeks after she had gone home with Frankie, in February, she said: “Every day I woke up and waited for him to move. It was such a mix of emotions but I had a lot of support.”

The couple's two older sons, Kiam, aged eight, and six-year-old Charlie, are absolutely delighted with dad's festive work - as well as their little brother.

To make a donation to the Long family's appeal, call 07982 734182.


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