Great Cornard family so thankful for support

BIG SUCCESS: Gemma Holt and partner Sam Penny with two-year-old Ruby-Rose Penny.
BIG SUCCESS: Gemma Holt and partner Sam Penny with two-year-old Ruby-Rose Penny.
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MORE than 1,000 people came to a family fun day on Sunday to support a couple’s “thank you” fundraiser to a hospital for helping save their young daughter’s life.

Gemma Holt, of Kersey Avenue, Great Cornard, spent weeks organising the event in aid of the paediatric intensive care unit at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, in Cambridge, where her daughter, Ruby-Rose Penny, two, was treated for cellulitis – a tissue infection just below the skin – in April.

The event was a big success, raising almost £1,700 with £600 coming from a raffle of 35 prizes donated by local businesses and well-wishers.

Visitors to Great Cornard Football Club enjoyed donkey rides, face-painting, bouncy castles and a display of motorcycles.

Sadly, Ruby-Rose had to return to Addenbrooke’s Hospital on Monday as she was unwell.

“It was a great day and I have to say a massive thankyou to everyone who came and all those who donated prizes and helped,” said Gemma.

The 26-year-old mum was due to present hospital staff with a cheque for more than £2,500 on Wednesday – she has also raised £900 through car boot sales – but it has had to be put on hold while Ruby-Rose recovers.

The toddler spent nine days recovering from cellulitis, which sent her body into septic shock and shut down vital organs. The condition, which can spread to the blood, bone and other organs if left untreated, had been brought on by a bout of chicken pox.