ONE-year-old Remy Clarke took his first steps after recovering from potentially fatal meningitis just days before his mum topped the fundraising charts at the OX5 Run.

Team Remy and Ralph – assembled by two friends whose sons have both spent time in the Oxford Children’s Hospital – have raised just under £3,500, beating 70 other teams and businesses.

Remy was rushed to the John Radcliffe Hospital with a temperature in July last year where he was diagnosed with potentially fatal meningitis and sepsis.

After almost a month in intensive care and surgery for fluid on the brain, Remy has been receiving home treatment and took his first steps last week.

His mum, Rebecca Clarke, from Bicester, said: “It was great to raise that amount. It was only last year that Remy was in the hospital and he still receives treatment from them now. He took his first steps last week and he is catching up with his peers in terms of his development.

“When he was in intensive care we weren’t sure if he would ever be able to walk. Mainly down to the hospital staff, he is.”

The team initially set themselves a target of £1,000 but with a few donations left to come in it looks like they will end up raising £3,500.

Fellow team founder Rachel Payne’s two-year-old son Ralph spent a week in a special care baby unit at the John Radcliffe Hospital after being unable to breathe on his own after he was born.

The 31-year-old, from Bicester, said her son was now the picture of health and was “causing chaos”.

She said: “We all burst into tears.

We couldn’t even speak at the end of the race – it means so much to give back to everyone who did so much for Ralph and Remy.

“Having a poorly child and being completely and utterly helpless is the most hideous feeling and if we can make a family’s experience in the hospital more comfortable then it has to be worth it.

“I was very emotional when we hit £3,000 because I have seen what the staff do and what the money can do.”

More than 1,000 runners braved the wet and windy weather to complete the five-mile Blenheim Palace run.

The hospital’s charity hopes to have raised £100,000 from Sunday’s run and those who took part have until Monday, May 11, to get their sponsorship money in.

Oxford Children’s Hospital spokeswoman Sarah Vaccari said: “Rachel and Rebecca have worked incredibly hard with their fundraising for the Oxford Children’s Hospital and we are truly grateful.

“They understand so well why events like the OX5 Run make such a difference to the young children we look after – allowing us to purchase the very latest medical equipment and specialist play facilities.

“We hope Team Remy and Ralph will inspire other runners to keep pushing onwards with their fundraising and spreading the word.”