AN ACTRESS will stage an evening of poetry and performances for a hospice that offered 'refuge' during a tragic loss.

Anna Tolputt, who lives in Donnington in Oxford, has organised a packed night of entertainment in memory of her baby niece.

Called Parenthood, the production takes place at the Pegasus Theatre in East Oxford tomorrow night, and raises money for neighbouring Helen & Douglas House

ALSO READ: Stephen Fry to bring three-night show to Oxford

Ms Tolputt said: "It was inevitable that my fundraising efforts would straddle the two strands of my life - theatre and motherhood - but it also seemed beautifully apt that we should celebrate something that is really what Helen & Douglas House is all about.  

"Helen & Douglas House understands that sickness and loss radiates outwards. It is a refuge, as much for the parents of the local terminally ill children as for the children themselves.   

"Our fundraising evening is not just for people who are parents, but for people who have parents - that frustrating, hilarious, embarrassing, awe-inspiring species that somehow, horrifically, remind us of ourselves."

Ms Tolputt ran the London Marathon last week to support the hospice, and this fundraiser will be the final push to reach her £2,500 target.

ALSO READ: London Marathon runner from Didcot breaks world record

Her efforts are in tribute to her niece Martha, who was born at the John Radcliffe Hospital in May 2015, after a placental abruption.

She died just five days later, and Helen & Douglas House offered a peaceful place for her parents to say goodbye.

Mr Tolputt said: "Helen & Douglas has a special place in my family's heart.

"In the hazy confusion of grief my brother and sister-in-law were advised to take Martha to Helen & Douglas House to spend some time with her. 

"It was the most natural, clarifying and life-affirming thing they could have done.

"They hung out with her, talked and laughed and at the end of the day they strolled back over carefully maintained gardens to sleep before waking up to see her again.  They got to be new parents."

ALSO READ: Polo club raises £1,000 for Oxford hospice

Parenthood is described as 'an evening of entertainment celebrating the utterly baffling experience that is having parents or being one yourself.'

It includes new and original work by Mike Bartlett, who wrote Dr Foster, Press and Charles III.

The one-off performance takes place at 7.30pm tomorrow and tickets cost £15.

Entertainment includes poems, plays and songs, including new original material by Jonny Donahoe from Jonny & The Baptists, Jon Ouin from the band Stornoway and a performance from Ms Tolputt herself.

The actress has appeared in films and theatre shows around the UK and internationally, including a stint at the National Theatre. 

Other performers include Claire Moore, who has performed in Phantom of Opera in the West End, and performance poet Rowan Padmore. 

To book tickets for Parenthood visit or call 01865 812150, or to donate another way, visit